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CLAS220 - Lecture Notes for January 12, 2012
CLAS220 - Lecture Notes for January 12, 2012
CLAS220 - Lecture Notes for January 12, 2012
CLAS220 - Lecture Notes for January 12, 2012
CLAS220 - Lecture Notes for January 12, 2012
CLAS220 - Lecture Notes for January 12, 2012
CLAS220 - Lecture Notes for January 12, 2012
CLAS220 - Lecture Notes for January 12, 2012
CLAS220 - Lecture Notes for January 12, 2012
CLAS220 - Lecture Notes for January 12, 2012
CLAS220 - Lecture Notes for January 12, 2012
CLAS220 - Lecture Notes for January 12, 2012
CLAS220 - Lecture Notes for January 12, 2012
CLAS220 - Lecture Notes for January 12, 2012
CLAS220 - Lecture Notes for January 12, 2012
CLAS220 - Lecture Notes for January 12, 2012
CLAS220 - Lecture Notes for January 12, 2012
CLAS220 - Lecture Notes for January 12, 2012
CLAS220 - Lecture Notes for January 12, 2012
CLAS220 - Lecture Notes for January 12, 2012
CLAS220 - Lecture Notes for January 12, 2012
CLAS220 - Lecture Notes for January 12, 2012
CLAS220 - Lecture Notes for January 12, 2012
CLAS220 - Lecture Notes for January 12, 2012
CLAS220 - Lecture Notes for January 12, 2012
CLAS220 - Lecture Notes for January 12, 2012
CLAS220 - Lecture Notes for January 12, 2012
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CLAS220 - Lecture Notes for January 12, 2012

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  • 1. Introduction to Classical Mythology Dr. Michael Broder University of South Carolina January 12, 2012
  • 2. Daily Write <ul><li>What is your reaction to reading Hesiod’s Theogony (love it, hate it, don’t understand it?) and what would you like to learn about it in the next 75 minutes? </li></ul>
  • 3. Myth and the Social Imaginary <ul><li>The social imaginary is the way people living in any time and place think of themselves and their society </li></ul><ul><li>Mythology is a part of the social imaginary </li></ul><ul><li>In this class, we will consider how mythology functions as a part of the ancient Greek and Roman social imaginary </li></ul>
  • 4. “ Good to Think” <ul><li>Anthropologist Claude Lévi-Strauss said that certain animals have symbolic meaning in certain cultures “not because they are good to eat, but because they are good to think ” </li></ul><ul><li>We might say that “apple pie” has symbolic meaning in the American social imaginary not because it is good to eat, but because it is good to think </li></ul>
  • 5. Mythology Is Good for Thinking <ul><li>The Greek poet Homer describes a plague: </li></ul><ul><li>“Apollo came down furious from the summits of Olympus, with his bow and his quiver upon his shoulder, and the arrows rattled on his back with the rage that trembled within him. He sat himself down away from the ships with a face as dark as night, and his silver bow rang death as he shot his arrow in the midst of them.” </li></ul><ul><li>Translated by Samuel Butler </li></ul>
  • 6. Identifying a Text <ul><li>For every text that we study, I want us to identify it by three main categories </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Author </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Nationality </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Dates </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Title </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Genre </li></ul></ul>
  • 7. Some Literary Genres <ul><li>Poem </li></ul><ul><li>Story </li></ul><ul><li>Play </li></ul><ul><li>Novel </li></ul><ul><li>Essay </li></ul>
  • 8. Theogony : Identification <ul><li>Author = Hesiod </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Greek </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>c. 700 BCE </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Title = Theogony </li></ul><ul><li>Genre = Epic poem </li></ul>
  • 9. Words: Theogony <ul><li>theo- (prefix) &lt; G theos = god </li></ul><ul><li>-gony (suffix) &lt; G gonos = birth, reproduction </li></ul><ul><li>theogony = birth of the gods </li></ul>
  • 10. Words: Epic <ul><li>Epic = long, narrative poem </li></ul><ul><ul><li>From G epos , word, story, poem </li></ul></ul>
  • 11. Words: Narrative <ul><li>Narrative = tells a story about characters and events </li></ul><ul><ul><li>From L narrare , to tell a story or give an account </li></ul></ul>
  • 12. Words: Poem <ul><li>Verbal composition like speech in some ways and like song in other ways, often with a distinctive rhythm </li></ul><ul><ul><li>From L poema , poem </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>From G poi ē ma , poem or any other result of creative activity </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>From G verb poiein , to make </li></ul></ul></ul>
  • 13. Outline of the Theogony <ul><li>Invocation to the Muses </li></ul><ul><li>The first gods </li></ul><ul><li>Castration of Ouranos </li></ul><ul><li>Birth of Aphrodite </li></ul><ul><li>Other early gods </li></ul><ul><li>Hecate </li></ul><ul><li>Birth of the Olympians </li></ul><ul><li>Prometheus </li></ul><ul><li>Pandora </li></ul><ul><li>The Titanomachy </li></ul><ul><li>Tartaros </li></ul><ul><li>Typhaios </li></ul><ul><li>Wives of Zeus </li></ul><ul><li>Unions of goddesses and heroes </li></ul>
  • 14. Invocation to the Muses <ul><li>“ Begin our singing with the Heloconian Muses” </li></ul><ul><li>Greek poetry sung not spoken </li></ul><ul><li>Greek poetry had rhythm but not rhyme </li></ul><ul><li>The rhythm of epic poetry = “dactylic hexameter,” a line with 6 beats ( hex = 6) </li></ul>
  • 15. Truth, Lies, and the Muses <ul><li>The Muses teach Hesiod to sing, and they tell him that they can tell both truths and convincing lies </li></ul><ul><li>How does the Muses’ capacity for falsehood affect the way we understand the Theogony ? </li></ul><ul><li>Do the Muses teach Hesiod to sing the truth, to sing lies, or both? </li></ul>
  • 16. The First Gods <ul><li>Four beings come into existence ex nihilo </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Chaos = nothingness, an empty abyss, a void </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Gaia = Earth </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Eros = Desire (usually translated “Love”) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Tartaros = the underworld, associated with death and darkness </li></ul></ul>
  • 17. The Birth of the Titans <ul><li>Gaia produces several children via asexual reproduction </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Ouranos = Sky </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Mountains </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Pontos = Sea </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Gaia and Ouranos produce the Titans via sexual reproduction </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Cronos and Rhea, who become the parents of the Olympians </li></ul></ul>
  • 18. Castration of Ouranos <ul><li>Instigated by Gaia </li></ul><ul><li>Carried out by Cronos </li></ul><ul><li>Results in the birth of Aphrodite </li></ul>
  • 19. Aphrodite <ul><li>Goddess of sex and sexual reproduction </li></ul><ul><li>Associated with the gods Eros and Himeros, synonyms for sexual desire </li></ul>
  • 20. Other Early Gods The Hundred-handers Force Strength Victory Styx Stars Hecate Winds Dawn Moon Sun Rivers Monsters Sphinx Chimaira Hydra Cerberus Nymphs Lies Quarrels Murders Battles Pains Famine Toil Strife Old Age Friendship Deception Fates Grief Blame Dreams Sleep Death Fate Doom
  • 21. Powers of Hecate <ul><li>Makes men prominent in the assembly </li></ul><ul><li>Sits beside kings in judgment </li></ul><ul><li>Assists men in war, athletic competition, and fishing </li></ul><ul><li>Increases livestock (sheep, goats, cattle) </li></ul><ul><li>Nurses the young </li></ul>
  • 22. Hecate and Masculine Virtue <ul><li>Her powers correspond to the four types of achievement that were most highly valued for ancient Greek men </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Bravery in battle </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Eloquence in the assembly </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Athletic competition </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Hunting </li></ul></ul><ul><li>These activities are associated with glory ( kleos ) in Homer and other sources </li></ul>
  • 23. The Birth of the Olympians <ul><li>Note that Cronos “forced himself upon Rheia” = sexual assault </li></ul><ul><li>Cronos devours his children so that no child will challenge his authority </li></ul><ul><li>Rheia deceives Cronos to protect Zeus, the youngest </li></ul><ul><li>Zeus frees the Cyclopes, who give him thunder and lightening in gratitude </li></ul>
  • 24. Prometheus &amp; Animal Sacrifice <ul><li>Prometheus tricks Zeus into choosing bone instead of flesh and fat as his allotted portion of the ox </li></ul><ul><li>Hesiod offers this to explain the origin ( aetia ) of animal sacrifice </li></ul>
  • 25. Prometheus and Fire <ul><li>Zeus, angry because Prometheus cheated him out of the choice part of the feast, withholds fire from mortals </li></ul><ul><li>Prometheus steals fire and gives it to mortals </li></ul><ul><li>Zeus retaliates by sending men Pandora </li></ul>
  • 26. Pandora, Mother of Women <ul><li>Clay figure made by Hephaistos to resemble a woman </li></ul><ul><li>Athena dresses her in beautiful clothing and accessories </li></ul><ul><ul><li>From her is the race of female women, </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The deadly race and population of women, </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>A great infestation among mortal men, </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>At home with Wealth but not with Poverty. (594-7) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>In another version of the story, Pandora opens a box filled with old age, disease, and all the other evils that afflict humankind </li></ul>
  • 27. Introduction to Classical Mythology Dr. Michael Broder University of South Carolina January 12, 2012

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