CLSC 231

Greek and Roman Epic: Genre and Meaning

This course introduces the epic genre in Greece and Rome. The course concentrates on a selection of ancient epic poems including Homer's <em>Iliad</em> and <em>Odyssey</em> and Vergil's <em>Aeneid</em>. Students consider each epic as an individual cultural and artistic product, but also how later epics draw upon and respond to earlier ones. The gradually more complex understanding of the epic genre built into the class allows students to investigate how the Greek and Roman epics combine cosmology and human narratives in order to explore the place of human beings in the universe; the relationship between gods and mortals; and the connection between moral, social, or historical order and cosmological order.