Roman Self-Fashioning: Poets and Philosophers, Lovers and Friends|
Fall 2009 not offered
With the descent into chaos of the Roman Republic and the emergence of the emperor as autocratic ruler at the head of the state, Roman social order and its system of personal relationships experienced a crisis. These circumstances are reflected in the literature of the period, which shows a fascination with unconventional styles of life and codes of behavior and a constant recourse to those situations in public and private life where the individual's relationship to the social order was negotiated and exhibited. Among the topics we will examine in the writings of some of the major authors of the period will be the literature of love and the role of the lover; parasites, patronage, and friendship; banquets and dining; the good life and personal contentment (and discontent); and the struggle for individual integrity.
Ethical Reasoning, Writing
Ethical Reasoning: The course deals with the pressure put on Roman traditional moral values during a time of social and political change. Among the readings are works on ethics by Cicero, Horace, and Seneca. In class we will discuss the shaping of persona identity and the exploration of various moral stances in the texts we study.
Writing: Students write five papers. Four are brief essays on the texts we have been reading in which they are expected to argue for a particular point of view and present arguments to support that position. The fifth is a longer final paper, more traditional in form. My comments on the papers include issues of composition, writing style, and the construction of arguments. Students having difficulty with the assignments have the option of submitting a draft or a rewrite of their essays.
||Gen Ed Area Dept:
|Course Format: Seminar||Grading Mode: Graded|
||Fulfills a Major Requirement for: None
Cicero, ON FRIENDSHIP
Catullus, Personal and love POEMS
Horace, SATIRES, EPISTLES, book 1; selected ODES and EPODES
Tibullus and Propertius, selected love POEMS
Ovid, ART OF LOVE, books 1 and 2; selected AMORES
Juvenal, selected SATIRES
Seneca, selected philosophical DIALOGUES and LETTERS
|Examinations and Assignments: |
Regular reading assignments; four short papers and a longer final paper; in-class reports.
|Additional Requirements and/or Comments: |
Regular class attendance is expected.
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