- Satisfies the Arts and Literature or the Philosophy and Values breadth requirements of the College of Letters and Science.
- The course counts as the equivalent of a Classics 130 within the various Classics majors
An introduction to some of the most important works of classical antiquity that theorize about literature. We will also read some influential works by post-classical authors who wrote on similar themes under the influence of their classical predecessors. The bulk of the course, however, will be given to the study, in translation, of ancient texts, including selections from Plato, Aristotle (Poetics), Horace (The Art of Poetry), Longinus (On Sublimity), and Augustine (Confessions Book 12). The post-classical authors will include Sidney, Pope, Corneille, Hume, and Lessing. The general structure of the course will be chronological, but we will also consider thematic links between works, including the distinctiveness of the literary from other arts (esp. the graphic) and from other uses of language (esp. the rhetorical); the theory of imitation (mimesis); the concepts of the beautiful and the sublime; the relation between literature and truth; the appeal to rules and canons.
Requirements: regular participation in class (including groupwork and debates); one midterm; final exam.
The course has no formal prerequisites, although it would be an asset to have completed an introductory course in Greek culture such as Classics 10A or Classics 44 or an introductory course in Greek philosophy such as Classics 36 or Philosophy 25A.