WGSS 241 Spring 2015 Sex and Gender in Ancient Greece and Rome (D) (W)

Cross Listed as CLAS241, COMP241
In the ancient Mediterranean world, sexuality and gender shaped a broad range of attitudes and actions. These categories created and reinforced difference in virtually every aspect of life, from the household to the political arena. This course examines the diverse discourses and practices around sexuality and gender in the cultures of ancient Greece and Rome, while also dismantling false assumptions about the continuity of the "classical" past with our own contemporary norms and values. We will carefully analyze, contextualize, and compare a variety of texts, including selections from tragedy and comedy (Euripides, Terence), epic (Homer, Ovid) and lyric poetry (Sappho, Catullus), novels, epitaphs, and early saints' lives, in order to gain a deeper and more complex understanding of how gender and sexuality were expressed, experienced, and regulated in Greece and Rome. Our emphasis will be on ancient texts, but selections from contemporary criticism and theory will enrich the methodological framework through which we approach those primary sources. The course fulfills the EDI requirement by providing sufficient context for students to make independent investigations of how literary and religious texts and practices engaged with political and social institutions to maintain different life courses and different systems of reckoning for the value of men's lives, women's lives, and the lives of individuals who didn't fit easily into either category. Additionally, the course will promote students' capacity to critically evaluate two past cultures that have long been important sources for intellectual and cultural traditions in the West, and which are still invoked today, sometimes misleadingly, to explain or justify positions and practices of privilege or oppression.
Class Format: tutorial
Requirements/Evaluation: five to six weekly tutorial papers, five to six responses, a midterm self-evaluation and conference with instructor, a mid-length final paper (approximately eight pages) consisting of a revision and expansion of a previously written paper
Additional Info: may not be taken on a pass/fail basis
Additional Info2:
Prerequisites: none
Enrollment Preference: majors or intended majors in Classics, WGSS, and Comparative Literature
Department Notes: meets Division 1 requirement if registration is under CLAS or COMP; meets Division 2 requirement if registration is under WGSS
Material and Lab Fees:
Distribution Notes:
Divisional Attributes: Division II,Exploring Diversity,Writing Intensive
Other Attributes:
Enrollment Limit: 10
Expected Enrollment: 10
Class Number: 3356
CLASSES ATTR INSTRUCTORS TIMES CLASS NUMBER
WGSS 241 - T1 (S) TUT Sex/Gender in Greece and Rome (D) (W) Division 2: Social StudiesExploring Diversity InitiativeWriting Intensive Amanda R. Wilcox
TBA 3356
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