Text and Context: Writing Women in Ancient Literature (CLA2410)
|Staff||Professor Sharon Marshall - Convenor|
|Duration of Module||Term 1: 11 weeks;|
- To explore the ways in which women were given voice and expression in the literature of the ancient Greek and Roman world, the subversive quality of the female voice and female sexuality, and the insights which feminist criticism can offer the modern reader of these ancient texts.
- To analyse texts both within their ancient literary-cultural context, and from the perspective of modern feminist criticism, and to evaluate these approaches critically.
ILO: Module-specific skills
- 1. Demonstrate a broad and detailed knowledge of a wide selection of primary texts relating to or written by women (in English translation)
- 2. Demonstrate a detailed knowledge of the realities of women's lives in ancient Greek and Roman society
- 3. Analyse the representation of women in ancient Greek and Latin literature and evaluate critically the role of the female voice in the text from a range of theoretical perspectives
ILO: Discipline-specific skills
- 4. Demonstrate advanced skills in the analysis and critical evaluation of ancient texts
- 5. Demonstrate advanced academic and library skills specific to Classics and Ancient History
- 6. Demonstrate an advanced understanding of and critical engagement with different approaches to classical literature, including New Historicism and feminist literary criticism
ILO: Personal and key skills
- 7. Demonstrate advanced study skills in research and the presentation of findings
- 8. Demonstrate advanced skills in the selection and organisation of relevant material
- 9. Demonstrate an ability to produce a strong and convincing argument
Whilst the content may vary from year to year, it is envisioned that it will cover some or all of the following topics:
- Women in medical texts (various)
- Women in epic (Homer, Ovid, Virgil)
- Women in elegy (Ovid)
- Women in lyric (Sappho)
- Women in the Greek novel (Achilles Tatius and Lucian)
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||Lectures (11 x 2 hours)|
|Scheduled Learning and Teaching||4||Seminars (4 x 1 hour)|
|Guided Independent Study||124||Private study|
|Form of assessment||Size of the assessment (eg length / duration)||ILOs assessed||Feedback method|
|Participation in seminars||Ongoing||1-9||Oral feedback|
|Gobbet exercise||1 hour||1-9||Written 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||2500 words||1-9||Mark and written comments|
|Gobbet test||40||1 hour||1-9||Mark and written comments|
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|
|Gobbet test||Gobbet test||1-9||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
All texts and material to be confirmed. A detailed list of prescribed texts and editions will be supplied by the lecturer.
Selected secondary reading:
- Bulter, J. (2006) Gender Trouble: Feminism and the Subversion of Identity. London: Routledge.
- Disch, L and Hawkesworth, M. eds. (2016) The Oxford Handbook of Feminist Theory. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
- Fantham, E. et al. eds. (1995) Women in the Classical World: Image and Text. New York: Oxford University Press.
- Hooks, b. (2014) Feminist Theory: From Margin to Center. London: Routledge.
- James, S. L. and Dillon, S. eds. (2012) A Companion to Women in the Ancient World. Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell.
- Lardinois, A. and McClure, L. eds. (2001) Making Silence Speak: Women's Voices in Greek Literature and Society. Princeton: Princeton University Press.
- McManus, B. F. (1997) Classics and Feminism: Gendering the Classics. New York: Twayne Publishers.
- Richlin, A. (2014) Arguments with Silence: Writing the History of Roman Women. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press.
- Robbins, R. (1999) ‘Will the Real Feminist Theory Please Stand Up?’ in J. Wolfreys, ed. Literary Theories: A Reader and Guide. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press. 49-58.
- Rooney, E. ed. (2006) The Cambridge Companion to Feminist Literary Theory. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
- Schmitz, T. A. (2007) ‘Feminist Approaches/Gender Studies’ in Modern Literary Theory and Ancient Texts: An Introduction. Oxford: Blackwell. 176-194.
- Skinner, M. B. (1996) ‘Woman and language in Archaic Greece, or, Why is Sappho a woman?’ in E. Greene, ed. Reading Sappho. Contemporary Approaches. Berkeley: University of California Press, 175-192.
- Sorkin Rabinowitz, N. and Richlin, A. eds. (1993) Feminist Theory and the Classics. London: Routledge.
- Whitmarsh, T., (2004) ‘A woman's place’ in Ancient Greek Literature. Cambridge: Polity Press. 177-195.
Module has an active ELE page?
Indicative learning resources - Web based and electronic resources
Available as distance learning?
Last revision date
Key words search
Women, literature, Greek, Roman, gender, sexuality