Comparative Literature 30A:
Major Works of European Literature: Classical and Medieval

The Walls of Uruk, built by Gilgamesh

The Walls of Uruk, built by Gilgamesh


Time and location: MW 12:30-3:20pm, Girvetz 1119
Enroll code: 01172
Instructor: James Donelan

Homer, The Odyssey
Sophocles, The Three Theban Plays
Plato, Symposium
Virgil, Aeneid
The Poem of the Cid
Dante, Inferno
A reader available at Graphikart.

Course Requirements:

Students must attend all lectures and discussion sections. Discussion sections will be held during the last hour of each class. The course also requires two five-page essays, a take-home midterm, and a final, along with a brief prospectus and an outline for each essay. Grades will be determined as follows: first essay, 20%; take-home midterm, 20%; second essay, 25%, final, 30%, participation, 5%. The essays will be critical interpretations of a work or works examined in the course, with scholarly secondary sources and proper MLA citation style. The take-home midterm will be an open-book synthesis of ideas from the works studied in the first half of the course. The final will be a standard comprehensive examination of all works in the course (with emphasis on the second half).†

Course Policies:


6/23 Introduction: Literature in the Ancient World† Notes More Notes

6/25 Gilgamesh, The Exaltation of Innana (reader) Notes More Notes

6/30 Homer, Odyssey I-XII, Parry essays (reader) Notes More Notes

7/2 Homer, Odyssey XIII-XXIV, Auerbach, "Odysseusí Scar" (reader)† Notes

7/7 First paper due ; Sophocles, Oedipus Rex, Antigone Notes More Notes

7/9 Aristotle, excerpts from Poetics (reader); Plato, Symposium† Notes

7/14 Take-home midterm due ; Virgil, Aeneid I-VI†Notes

7/16 Aeneid, VII-XII Notes

7/21 Beowulf Notes

7/23 Second essay due ; The Poem of the Cid Notes

7/28 Dante, Inferno, Freccero, "Medusa" (reader)

7/30 Final examination.

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