Course Description: This course will start from the world and poetry of Catullus, one of the most spontaneous and personal of all ancient poets. Our attempt to reconstruct the Catullus that his friends and admirers knew in the mid-first century B.C. will lead us into several basic forms of inquiry: first, what exactly Catullus was expressing in his poems; then what artifice he used to express himself; and finally how he would have performed his poetry when he read to an audience (as probably would have been the standard mode of dissemination). We will also look at the tradition of Latin Lyric in broader perspective, reading a series of authors in the medieval, renaissance and modern periods. In these we will see the rise of rhymed, stressed poetry, and then the rebirth of ancient forms. The goal will be to gain an appreciation of one of the world's most influential and long-lived literary languages.
Requirements: For each week's reading, students will be required to read the selections carefully enough to be able to:
Texts: all texts are found on the official course web site.
Attendance: Since class participation is a significant graded percentage of this course, each class a student misses will detract from this grade. Several absences will not do permanent damage, but more than 8 (out of 42 meetings -- i.e. almost 20%) will be serious.
Honor Policy: Like any academic work at UR all work done for this course falls under the honor code. If you have any doubt what constitutes "unauthorized assistance," please come and talk to the instructor before trying it.
N.B. The Department of Classical Studies does not allow make up tests under any circumstances, nor does it accept late work. This is an unswerving policy of the instructor also.