Text and Context: Roman Laughter (CLA1405)
|Staff||Professor Sharon Marshall - Convenor|
|Duration of Module||Term 2: 11 weeks;|
You will learn how to analyse, evaluate and use texts from a range of genres and how to relate their style and content to the wider context of Roman literary culture and society. In considering what we can learn about the Romans from their use of humour, you will also be encouraged to think about uses of humour in the modern world and the socio-cultural insights that can be gleaned from thinking about what makes us laugh.
ILO: Module-specific skills
- 1. Analyse texts and other sources which put Roman humour on display
- 2. Understand a variety of critical approaches to the study of classical humour and current trends in criticism
ILO: Discipline-specific skills
- 3. Use, analyse and evaluate ancient texts in relation to other sources and their socio-historical context
- 4. Understand and apply different theoretical approaches to classical literature and material culture
ILO: Personal and key skills
- 5. Develop basic academic and library skills as well as a critical ability in assessing published literature
- 6. Demonstrate independent study skills in guided research and presentation of findings
- 7. Select and organise relevant material and to present this in oral and/or written form
Whilst the content may vary from year to year, it is envisioned that it will cover some or all of the following topics:
- Introduction: Theories of laughter
- Comedy and rhetoric: Cicero’s In Pisonem
- Epigram: Catullus and Martial
- Phaedrus’ Fables
- Satire: Horace, Juvenal and Persius
- Laughter in visual material
Learning activities and teaching methods (given in hours of study time)
|Scheduled Learning and Teaching Activities||Guided independent study||Placement / study abroad|
Details of learning activities and teaching methods
|Category||Hours of study time||Description|
|Scheduled learning and teaching||22||11 x 2 hour lectures|
|Scheduled learning and teaching||5||5 x 1 hour seminars|
|Guided independent study||123||Independent study|
|Form of assessment||Size of the assessment (eg length / duration)||ILOs assessed||Feedback method|
|Oral presentation||10-15 minutes per group||1-7||Written and oral feedback|
Summative assessment (% of credit)
|Coursework||Written exams||Practical exams|
Details of summative assessment
|Form of assessment||% of credit||Size of the assessment (eg length / duration)||ILOs assessed||Feedback method|
|Essay||60||2000 words||1-7||Mark, written and oral feedback|
|Written OR oral source analysis||40||1000 words (written) OR 10 mins (oral)||1-7||Mark, written and oral feedback|
Details of re-assessment (where required by referral or deferral)
|Original form of assessment||Form of re-assessment||ILOs re-assessed||Timescale for re-assessment|
|Written OR oral source analysis||Written or oral source analysis||1-7||Referral/Deferral period|
Deferral – if you miss an assessment for certificated reasons judged acceptable by the Mitigation Committee, you will normally be either deferred in the assessment or an extension may be granted. The mark given for a re-assessment taken as a result of deferral will not be capped and will be treated as it would be if it were your first attempt at the assessment.
Referral – if you have failed the module overall (i.e. a final overall module mark of less than 40%) you will be required to submit a further assessment as necessary. If you are successful on referral, your overall module mark will be capped at 40%.
Indicative learning resources - Basic reading
- Catullus (a selection)
- Phaedrus (Book 5)
- Horace, Satires
- Juvenal, Satires
- Martial, Epigrams
- Cicero, In Pisonem
- Recommended Reading:
- Fitzgerald, W. Martial: The World of the Epigram. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
- Freudenburg, K. ed. (2005) The Cambridge Companion to Roman Satire. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
- Henderson, J. (2001) Telling Tales on Caesar: Roman Stories from Phaedrus. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
- Jäkel, S. and A. Timonen. eds. (1997) Laughter Down the Centuries. Turku: Turun Yliopisto.
- Sullivan, J. P. (1991) Martial: The Unexpected Classic. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Module has an active ELE page?
Indicative learning resources - Web based and electronic resources
Available as distance learning?
Last revision date
Key words search
Roman, Classics, humour, literature, material culture