Instructor: Cindy Benton, firstname.lastname@example.org
Office: 312 College Hall; x4126
Office Hours: M W 11:00 - 12 and by appointment.
Class Meetings: T-F 9-11 & M-Th 1-3 in College Hall 118
- Fantham, Foley, Kampen, Pomeroy, and Shapiro Women in the Classical
- Lefkowitz and Fant, Women's Life in Greece and Rome
- Snyder, The Woman and the Lyre:Women Writers in Classical Greece
- Xeroxed Course Packet
Course Goals: The purpose of this course is to introduce you to
the Classical sources, methodologies, and the current debates focusing
on women in antiquity. We will explore the representations of women in
Classical literature and art as well as the place of women in ancient
Greek and Roman culture. By analyzing textual, visual and archaeological
evidence we will also investigate the legal and social status of women
in the ancient world with particular attention to issues of class and
ethnicity. Ancient Greece and Rome have often been considered as the origins
of Western attitudes toward women. Thus, we will also explore the similarities
and differences between ancient and contemporary notions of female identity
and the position of women in society.
Response Papers: 1 page discussions of your
reactions to the assigned readings. These papers are designed to
help you prepare for class discussions and to give you practice
in analyzing primary sources before you have to tackle the final
project.. They will be graded on the depth to which you actively
engage the readings and the level of thought you put into your reflections.
Due in the morning sessions on each Wed. and Fri.
- Short Essay: 4-6 pages based on the assigned reading and class
discussions. These essays provide an opportunity to examine the course
material in more depth. A choice of topics will be handed out in advance
or you can write on a topic of your choice after consultation with me.
Due Feb. 23.
- Panel Presentation: Each person will be part of a group panel
on one of the following topics:
- Greek Prostitution
- Women & Greek Religion
- Marriage & Women's Sexuality in Ancient Rome
- Elite Roman Women
Each panel will give a presentation on the topic and then lead a
discussion on it for the rest of the morning. The panel should not
be a series of separate unconnected reviews, but should be a coherent,
well-organized presentation and discussion centering on the topic
at hand. The group will need to turn in an outline of their presentation
detailing which areas will be covered and how the presentation will
be divided among panel members along with a list of discussion questions.
In addition, each person will turn in an article review from the list
of recommended readings. I will also schedule a meeting with each
group on the day before the presentation. Individual grades for the
panels will be based on your article review, your ability to collaborate
with your group (peer evaluations), the amount of effort you put into
the panel, and the success of the panel and following discussion as
a whole. Factors that will determine the success of the panel include:
preparation and organization, how well the topic is covered, integration
of individual discussions into the group presentation, visual aids,
how well the group generates and facilitates discussion.
- Final Project: The final project is an exercise in recovering
women's history and trying to see life from the perspective of women
in other cultures and time periods. Each person will choose a woman
from antiquity and try to reconstruct an account of her life from her
perspective. This will involve:
- Research on the particular woman and other women of her class and
- Writing a historical profile of this person that details her life
and accomplishments that are representative of her class and status.
- Creating a first person narrative based on the historical profile.
This narrative should be based on factual material, but add a sense
of personality and attitude that the group thinks she might have had.
It should also discuss the cultural constraints she might have dealt
- The creation of a web site devoted to this woman as part of the
larger class webpage devoted to recovering women's history and women's
voices. This site will include the profile, any images we may have
of the woman, the first person narrative, and further links to documentary
sources and related materials that illustrate the life of this woman.
On the last day of class, I will also ask you to submit a one or two
page report summarizing what you accomplished, what you wished you had
done but were not able to do, and what you learned from the experience.
- Feb. 9 - Topic Due
- Feb. 12 - Bibliography Due
- Feb. 19 - Historical Profile Due
- Feb. 27 - Final Draft & Website Due
- Class Participation: This includes coming to class prepared
and participating actively in discussion. This will be a seminar course,
and thus requires you to not only to do the reading before class, but
to contribute actively to discussion. Do not be shy. The success of
the discussions will depend on each person contributing thoughtfully
to the class. By the same token, we all bring different backgrounds
and perspectives to the course - this is what makes class interesting.
It is, therefore, crucial to the success of the course that everyone
show respect and courtesy to everyone else in the class, and a willingness
to help each other learn and approach the material from new perspectives.
- 15% response papers
- 20% short essay
- 20% panel presentation
- 35% final project
- 10% class participation