Studying The Greek World
This wide-ranging module introduces you to the history, literature and art of the Greek World from 1600BC-31BC, from the Bronze Age to a point when Greece had become part of the Roman Empire; no prior knowledge of the Greek world is required. You will consider major chapters of Greece’s history, such as the Mycenean Period, the Dark Ages, and the rise of the city-state in the Archaic period. You will also explore developments in Greek literary and artistic culture and consider aspects of the reception of ancient Greece in modern western culture. For this module you will have one 2-hour lecture each week over the course of 10 weeks.
Studying The Roman World
This module introduces you to the history, literature and art of the Roman world from the beginnings of the city of Rome to the fall of the Roman Empire in the West. You will examine all many important aspects of Rome’s history such as the Roman Republic, the rise of the empire, the establishment of the Principate, and the fall of Rome. At the same time you will explore developments in Roman literary and artistic culture, and consider aspects of the reception of ancient Rome in modern western culture. In addition, you will examine the relationship of the Roman world to the Greek world which complements the Autumn semester module ‘Studying the Greek World'. For this module you will have one 2-hour lecture each week.
Latin Texts: 1
This module is targeted at those students who have a good A-level pass in Latin. This module studies a Latin literary text and begins the systematic revision of grammar to be completed in 'Latin Texts: 2'. This module will reinforce your knowledge of the Latin language and develop your ability to read Latin with fluency and understanding. Examples of texts read: Lucretius 1, Virgil's Eclogues, Propertius 4, Tacitus' Agricola. For this module you will have one 2-hour class and three 1-hour classes each week.
Interpreting Ancient Literature
Ancient literature from Homer to late antiquity is studied in this module by focusing on a representative theme. Recent themes have been ‘Performance and Persuasion’ and 'Love and War'. Issues treated have included: the relationship of literature and society, oral culture, performance, genre, gender, religion and literature and analysis of style. For this module you will have eight 1-hour seminars over the year and two 1-hour lectures each week.
Beginner's Greek 1
In this module you will be provided with an introduction to the grammar and vocabulary of classical Greek; no previous knowledge is assumed. Emphasis is placed on acquiring the ability to read Greek; the course is intensive and takes you to a high level of knowledge in a short period of time. Language learning requires regular and frequent reinforcement which can be hard work but is very rewarding. For this module you will have four 1-hr classes every week, enabling you to keep working steadily over the course of 10 weeks.
Extended Source Study
This module is designed to develop your skills of research, analysis and written presentation as preparation for your third year dissertation. You will write a 5,000 word essay chosen from a range of topics, each focusing on a single piece of ancient source material. You will be provided with a topic for investigation, starter bibliography and tips on how to approach the question. The questions will suggest a range of possible approaches from evaluation of historical source material to exploration of literary effects, relationships with other material, discussion of context, or reception. For this module you will have a mixture of lectures and four 2-hour seminars over a period of 10 weeks.
Classics and Popular Culture
This module explores the reception of ancient Greek and Roman culture in modern popular media such as films, theatre, novels, museums, architecture, children's literature and comics, and sets out to reach an understanding of how these receptions influence the way Greek and Roman culture is approached, used, and questioned. Lectures may focus on any of the following: classical education from the 19th century to the present, the influences of the Classics on the production and content of modern literature, the establishment of museums, use and abuse of the Classics in political and philosophical debate, their role on the theatre stage as well as in film and other visual media (television, computer, games, comics, pop music). Lectures are interspersed with weekly events based around a film, documentary, guest speaker or theatrical performances, and seminars to allow focussed group discussion of those events. For this module you will have two 2-hour sessions a week, comprising 15 lectures and workshops and five seminars.
Studying Classical Scholarship
This module focuses on the history and development of the scholarship on ancient Greece and Rome and on specific theories, approaches and methods used by modern scholarship. The aim is to sharpen your engagement with and understanding of scholarship, and to give a deeper appreciation of the ways the ancient world has been appropriated. Studying the history of scholarship in its socio-political context will show you how the questions we ask depend on the situations we live in; it will also allow you to judge the merits and limitations of scholarly approaches and will develop your skills of research and analysis, as preparation for your 3rd-year dissertation. You will have a combination of lectures and four two-hour seminars. As with the Extended Source Study, you will choose a work-sheet relating to an area of the ancient world which particularly interests you; the module is assessed by an oral presentation and a 4500-word essay.
Latin Texts: 3
This module examines, in the original Latin, a text representative of an author, genre, period or theme of Latin literature, paying close attention to matters of language and style. In recent years, themes have included: Flavian personal poetry (Martial and Statius); Roman comedy (Plautus and Terence); the emperor Claudius (Suetonius and Tacitus). Literary appreciation and linguistic skills are developed through detailed analysis of original Latin. The module will not just be about literature: you will also explore the text's relationship with its social, political and cultural context. For this module you will have one 2-hour class and one 1-hour class each week.
Intermediate Latin: 1
This module builds on your experience of Beginners Latin 1-2, if you are starting Latin at university. As well as continuing to revise and consolidate grammar and syntax, you will read a text such as Cicero Pro Archia or Virgil Aeneid 1 in some depth, and practise close reading of Latin and other exercises that you will take further in Advanced Latin.
What can a face tell us? This module explores Greek and Roman portrait sculptures, how and why they were made, where they stood, and what they stood for. Topics covered include: the features necessary to call a depiction of a face a portrait; the relationship of face and body in the shaping of a portrait; the emergence of the portrait in Greek art, portraits of Greek generals and statesmen, Hellenistic female portraiture, and how to analyse marble portraits by means of 3D technology. For this module you will have three hours of lectures and a 1-hour seminar every fortnight over the semester.
Independent Second-Year Project
This module is your opportunity to expand your knowledge of the Classical world in an area which interests you, and to experiment with a method of communicating that knowledge which is different from the usual assessment practices of essay-writing, exam-writing and seminar -presentation. You might undertake research that leads to (for example) the construction of a database, or to the reconstruction of some ancient Greco-Roman artefact. You might acquire experience of a communication method which could be of use to you in a future career, e.g. by constructing a teaching plan, writing in a journalistic style, planning a museum exhibit. You might choose to experiment with a different medium of communication, e.g. a video or a website. A supporting portfolio documenting your research forms part of the assessment, alongside the project itself. For this module you will have a combination of lectures, seminars, computing training and workshops.
Love in Augustan Rome
In this module you will undertake a detailed study, in translation, of the Latin elegiac poet Propertius, with reference to other poets of the same genre (Catullus, Gallus, Tibullus, Ovid). The module takes a cross-cultural perspective on writing love poetry: what does it mean to say ‘I love you’ and how do different cultures do it? You will also be looking at real women and imaginary mistresses, masculinity and counter-cultural posturing, allusion and literary credibility, poetry and politics. For this module you will have three hours of lectures and a 1-hour seminar every fortnight over the semester.
The emperor Constantine (306-337) had a significant impact on the Roman Empire and on European history in the longer-term, above all through his support for Christianity, but also through his foundation of the city of Constantinople. This module aims to place his reign in its wider context - the turmoil experienced by the Roman Empire during the third century, the recovery of stability under Diocletian and the Tetrarchy, the emergence of the Christian church as a significant feature of the empire's religious landscape, and the new military challenges which the empire faced in the form of Persia and northern barbarian groups – and to assess Constantine’s policies on a range of fronts: religious, military and social. This semester-long 10 credit module involves one 1-hour lecture each week and a fortnightly 1-hour seminar, and is assessed by an exam.
Latin Texts 5
This module examines, in the original Latin, a range of texts representative of an author, genre, period or theme of Latin literature, paying special attention to matters of language and style. Literary appreciation and linguistic skills are developed through detailed analysis of the original Latin. The position of the texts in the development of the genre will be explored, as well as their relationship with their social context. A recent example would be to focus on a selection of Martial’s epigrams and Statius Silvae
2, studying the poems as part of life in Flavian Rome. Themes included: the emperor, patronage, daily life, gender and sexuality, genre, satire, the city of Rome.
In this module you will be able to carry out an in-depth investigation of a chosen area, to be agreed with your supervisor in advance. You will use the skills that your degree has equipped you with thus far to plan, research and complete a 10,000-word essay There will be a mix of contact to achieve this, including one-to-one tutorials with a supervisor, workshops and lectures
The year-long Special Subject module involves three hours of seminars per week, and provides an opportunity for intensive study of one of the most influential figures in Roman history. The module examines the ways in which, after his victory in the civil wars, Augustus established his rule over the Roman world on a secure and generally acceptable basis. Attention is paid to the ancient sources (studied in translation): these include not only historical and literary texts, but inscriptions, coins, art and architecture. This module covers not only political aspects of the theme but also Augustus' impact on society, religion, culture, and ideology. It is assessed through a combination of coursework essays, formal presentation and exam.
This module considers the genre of literature known as Imperial Biography: that is, biographies written about the Roman Emperors. In particular, it will focus on Suetonius' Lives of the Caesars and the anonymous text known as the Historia Augusta. The module will not only look at the limitations of the genre as a whole in relation to its structure and sources, but it will also look at major themes within the lives and key case studies of specific examples - ranging from physiognomics and appearance, to gender and sexuality, omens and portents, religion and philosophy, administration and empire-building, birth and death scenes and so on - all in relation to specific emperors such as Augustus, Caligula, Claudius, Nero, Vespasian, Domitian, Hadrian, Marcus Aurelius, Commodus and Elagabalus. This semester-long 10-credit module has one 1-hour lecture per week and one 1-hour seminar every two weeks, and is assessed by an exam.
The modules we offer are inspired by the research interests of our staff and as a result may change for reasons of, for example, research developments or legislation changes. The above list is a sample of typical modules we offer, not a definitive list.