LIT 406 - Classical Drama (Spring 2013)

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It is a dream! I will dream on!

                             -  Nietzsche, The Birth of Tragedy

Dr. Joel M. Dodson | MW 3:25-4:40 | Engleman B304 

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Course Schedule

Reading and Lecture Guides


Essay Assignments

This course is an introduction to classical drama in the ancient Greek and Roman theatre. Its purpose is two-fold: (i) to survey the development of tragedy and comedy from their origins in the City Dionysia of 5th century Athens, and (ii) to understand the influence of the classical stage on our modern ideas of dramatic performance and criticism. We will pursue the first goal by reading carefully a handful of works by the three great Attic tragedians, Aeschylus, Sophocles, and Euripides (including their variations of the Electra myth), and then tracing the transformation of dramatic convention through the Old Comedy of Aristophanes and the New Comedy of later Greek and Roman playwrights. We will pursue the second goal by placing these works in conversation with other writers, critics, and philosophers, from Aristotle to Nietzsche as well as modern adaptations in film, music, and theatre. Assignments will include a series of mini-essays, reading quizzes, a presentation, and a final exam.


 © Joel Dodson 2014