Department of Classics

Joshua Renfro

Assistant Instructor


CTI 350 • Masterworks Of World Drama

30035 • Spring 2021
Meets MWF 9:00AM-10:00AM UTC 1.130

What are we humans doing when we go about our human business?  What happens when love goes wrong?  Is justice possible and what does injustice look like?  In what ways do our families define us?  Are we able to choose our own destiny even when dealt a tragic hand?  These are just some of the questions that the masterworks of theater have posed.  Theater poses these vital questions in gripping, spectacular ways, and the way a question is posed is likely meaningful to how we answer it.  Using three loose themes—Fate & Freedom, Love & Lineage, Justice & Judgment—we will uncover significant questions plays ask (and answers they provide) while paying attention to theater's form.  This form, drama, is almost universal across world cultures.  Better acquaintance with Sophocles, Euripides, Terence, Shakespeare, Molière, Goethe, Chekhov and other great playwrights might even help explain why during the pandemic, Americans with the relevant subscriptions stream eight hours of "content" per day.  More importantly, encounters with these plays will challenge us to think, feel, and perhaps even act (pun intended) more spectacularly.   




Anonymous, Everyman; Aristotle, Poetics (selections); Chekhov, The Seagull; Euripides, Bacchae; Goethe, Egmont; Marlowe, Dr. Faustus; Molière, Psyché; Nottage, Sweat; Terence, Adelphoe; Shakespeare, A Midsummer Night's Dream, Hamlet, Richard II; Sophocles, Oedipus at Colonus; Wilson, The Piano Lesson


Grading scheme:


5 short papers: 30%; 2 longer essays (plus re-writes): 25%; recitation of monologue: 10%; group performance: 10%; final exam: 15%; active participation and attendance: 10% 

LAT 511K • Accelerated Intermediate Latin

33230 • Fall 2020
Meets MWF 2:00PM-3:00PM WAG 201

Intermediate Latin

This course is a a continuation of Latin 507 (or 601C) and is the final course in the beginning-intermediate Latin sequence.

Latin 511K fulfills the foreign language requirement. A grade of C or higher is required to advance to Latin 322.

C C S348 • Sport/Spectacle Anc World-Wb

79089 • Summer 2020
Internet; Asynchronous

This summer the globe is disappointed: the Olympics are postponed.  Sport fascinates Everyfan. It does so in a literal way. It fixates the eyes, attracts, and implies no explanation for its attraction. It doesn't seem to need one. Understanding may even damage the viewer's fascination. But Everyfan should, as this class will, keep open the possibility that understanding would intensify pleasure and perhaps allow for more apt praise of athleticism.

Moreover, sport (and spectacle) is interwoven intricately into every civilization. Hence it tells us, or can, about society, human nature, culture. Conversely, to understand sport we must look not just at its own athletic threads but to try to view other relevant surrounding threads in the culture and maybe even get a fragmentary picture of the whole tapestry. Therefore, this class will not be a sports history but a sport history. We won't learn about individual sports as ends-in-themselves but will rather try to make sport tell us about ancient Greece and Rome, and occasionally vice versa. Along the way, there will be time to reflect on how ancient sport and spectacle illuminates us today.

C C 302 • Intro To Ancient Rome-Wb

32905 • Fall 2019
Internet; Asynchronous

This introductory-level course covers the cultural and political history of Ancient Rome, from the city’s origins in the Iron Age (c. 800 BCE) to the rise of Augustus and the rule of emperors in the 1st century CE/AD. Students will have the opportunity to learn about Rome’s evolution from a small, hilltop settlement to the head of a world empire. By the end of the course, students will be familiar with the most important buildings, artistic works, events and historical figures of Ancient Rome.

Fulfills the Visual and Performing Arts requirement.

Carries the Global Cultures flag.

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