College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

What is Classics?

Classics is the integrated study of ancient Greek and Roman civilization through its languages, literature, and artistic and material remains. This broad field includes the study of the great texts of classical antiquity, such as Vergil's Aeneid, Homer's Iliad and Odyssey, Plato's Symposium, Sophocles' Antigone, and the love poems of Sappho and Catullus, but also encompasses research into everyday life in the societies that produced those great works. In addition to training in the classical languages (Greek and Latin), the department introduces students to a range of work in literary criticism and cultural studies. Topics include Greek and Roman archaeology and art history, ancient theater, mythology, women's history, humor, cultural exchange across the Mediterranean, the translation of Greek and Latin poetry, the history of slavery, sexuality, and ethnicity in ancient society, film studies, and the reception of classical antiquity in the modern era.

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