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Book Club | October 2021: Agamemnon, the Pathetic Despot

"What was Agamemnon like as a character for Homer and his audience? More fundamentally, how should we approach the topic of characterization itself, following the discoveries of Milman Parry, Albert Lord, and their successors?" For October, we will read Andrew Porter’s Agamemnon, the Pathetic Despot: Reading Characterization in Homer, available at the Center for Hellenic Studies website. Discussion starts and continues in the Forum, and via Zoom on Tuesday, October… Read more

Women in Diogenes Laertius’ Lives of the Eminent Philosophers, part 1

Diogenes Laertius wrote in Greek in the third century CE. The piece of writing that has survived is his Lives of the Eminent Philosophers, a compilation of biographies. His anecdotes led me to read further, and to try to identify all the women Diogenes mentioned, leading to this series of blogposts. This first one presents some general points about Diogenes’ writing. Read more

Beauty in Homeric Iliad and Odyssey

Beauty: a concept of the mind that is intangible, culturally influenced, and fluid. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, say many. The realm of beauty is as old as humanity. The topic canvasses from philosophy to religion from natural to man-made. This is a huge topic, of which I will focus on the Homeric Iliad and Odyssey, and explore how people in antiquity thought about beauty. Read more

Book Club | September 2021: Strabo Geography

"If the scientific investigation of any subject be the proper avocation of the philosopher, Geography, the science of which we propose to treat, is certainly entitled to a high place" This month's selection is from Strabo's Geography. Discussion starts and continues in the Forum, and via Zoom on Tuesday, September 28 at 11 a.m. EDT. Read more