- The final project will be a combination of individual essays and group
presentations which will trace the transformations of specific mythic
figures from antiquity through the present. Each group will choose a
mythic figure and each member will be responsible for writing a 5-7
page essay discussing this figure in a particular piece of literature,
art, music, theater, or film. At least one essay from each group should
address an ancient version of the mythic figure and one a contemporary
representation. Each group will then use the individual essays to create
a presentation on the transformation of their mythic figure from antiquity
to the present. Details of the various components are as follows:
1. Each group will need to turn in proposal including a brief description
of the mythic figure, a list of its members and each person's project
(the specific text, film, painting, opera etc. each person is researching),
and a request for any technical equipment needed for the group presentation
(video/tv, cd player, computer & projector, etc) Proposals will
be due on October 15th.
2. Each person will turn in a 5-7 page essay discussing how their group's
mythic figure is represented in a particular piece of literature,
art, music, theater, or film. Questions to consider: How is this author,
painter, director, etc. using or adapting ancient mythic traditions?
Which version or aspect of the myth does it highlight? Does it differ
from the ancient version? If so, how and why? How might this myth be
relevant to the culture in which it was (re)told? In what ways has it
been adapted to make it more relevant? (e.g. How do you take a violent,
womanizing warrior like Hercules and make him appealing to a Disney
audience? Why would Disney even want to create a film about Hercules?
What relevance does he have to a 20th century audience?)Who is the target
audience? Is their any sort of cultural capital to be gained by using
such mythic figures? What parallels or contrasts are being drawn between
the culture in which your piece is created and ancient Greece or Rome?
Individual essays are due on October 24th.
3. Group presentations: Each group will meet to share their projects
with each other and work together to create a presentation for the class
which shows how their mythic figure has transformed from antiquity to
the present. Presentations should be well integrated and present a coherent
argument based on the individual projects of each member. The mode of
presentation/performance is an important element of this part of the
project (i.e. I don't want a series of individual, unconnected reports.
This is an opportunity to display your creativity and hone your collaboration
skills). The final two days of the course will be reserved for presentations.
4. Each person will turn in a 1-2 page critique of their group's project
including an evaluation of each member's efforts and contributions to
the project (including a self evaluation). This critique will be considered
when grades are calculated. Critiques are due on October 24th.