3: Persians and Others

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For our third class we’ll consider how Greek historians wrote about their encounters with Eastern peoples and kings, especially the Persians.  (This is our first prose genre!)  We’ll reflect on how these narratives have continued to shape modern interpretations and what other perspectives and sources might be available.

We’ll expand considerably our discussion of ‘the Other’ and things that are ‘Good to Think With’ from last class.

Readings:

Herodotus, Excerpts (EPUB, PDF)

Prefer to Listen? Or better yet read and listen simultaneously?  There is a complete recording on Librivox for free! Librivox also has an awesome free app for easy listening (iOS, Android).  Key to listening.  This is about 3 hours and 40 minutes of audio.  The app allows you to listen at a faster tempo if you prefer to make it go faster.

Extra Credit Opportunity. 

Good with tech?  download all this audio and edit it into a single file with just the content needed for this class.  Share this file with me, so I can share it with future students =  2 e.c. points towards your final grade!

Other Topics discussed in the Class:

The term ‘Barbarian’

Bias vs. Authorial Voice, Authorial Perspective

Artemisia I, as well as Mausolus and  Artemisia II of Halicarnassus

Croesus, Cyrus, Darius, Xerxes

Solon

Supplementary Readings:

NOT REQUIRED. Only provided as resources to help you feel more confident in your understanding of the material!

Two pieces of journalism both suggesting why Herodotus might be relevant to the here and now, one from The New Yorker and the other from the Guardian.  Both are highly readable introductions to our author and his subject matter.

This is a study guide/plot summary made by another professor.  It is far smarter than what you’ll find in your average SparkNotes/CliffNotes type online resource.

Blog Prompts:

Barbarians in the News (Three Options)

Option 1: Easy (regular credit)

Steps:  (1) go to Google News, search for one of the following ‘barbaric’, ‘barbarian’, or ‘barbarians’, and select one of the returns that is less than a week old (2) Check the blog to make sure no-one has already used that specific article! [This is a great time to comment thoughtfully on other posts.] (3) select a quotation which includes your search term  and include that quote in your blog post (4) create a title that distinguishes your post from all the others (5)  include an MLA format citation of the article you used and create a link to the article (6) write at least 250 words about about: Who is being treated as ‘Other’ by the use of the term?  Who do you think is the target audience for the article? What social value is being affirmed as a shared value for the target audience? How is this similar or different to a use of the word barbarian in our readings for this class?  Include a quote from EITHER Herodotus OR Thucydides  (7) be sure to include the following tags as appropriate: NewBarbarians, CLAS3, Herodotus, Thucydides.

Option 2: Medium (worth up to 1.5 times credit!  i.e. can make up for 1/2 a missed blog post)

Steps:  (1) Use The New York State Newspaper Database (an on-line library resource) to find two articles published in the last month (hint: sort search results by date!) that both use one of the following ‘barbaric’, ‘barbarian’, or ‘barbarians’ 2) Check the blog to make sure no-one has already used these specific articles! [This is a great time to comment thoughtfully on other posts.] (3) select a quotation from each article which includes your search term  and include those quotes in your blog post (4) create a title that distinguishes your post from all the others (5)  include an MLA format citation of the articles you used and create a link to the articles (6) write at least 375 words about: Who is being treated as ‘Other’ by the use of the term in each article?  Who do you think is the target audience for each article? What social value is being affirmed as a shared value for the target audiences? How are these situations similar or different to a use of the word barbarian in our readings for this class?  Include a quote from EITHER Herodotus OR Thucydides.  How similar or different are the two articles to each other with regard to their use of the term.  (7) be sure to include the following tags as appropriate: NewBarbarians, CLAS3, Herodotus, Thucydides, Bonus

Option 3: Advanced (worth up to 2 times credit!  i.e. a whole missed blog post)

Steps:  (1) Learn how to use Lexis Nexis (an on-line library resource of world newspapers!). Use your search to limit your search results to the last month, only newspapers, search for one of the following ‘barbaric’, ‘barbarian’, or ‘barbarians’, and select two of the returns from two different newspapers from two different countries published ON THE SAME EVENT OR SUBJECT 2) Check the blog to make sure no-one has already used these same articles! [This is a great time to comment thoughtfully on other posts.] (3) select a quotation from each article which includes your search term  and include those quotes in your blog post (4) create a title that distinguishes your post from all the others (5)  include an MLA format citation of the article you used and create a link to the article (6) write at least 500 words about about: Who is being treated as ‘Other’ by the use of the term in each article?  Who do you think is the target audience for each article? What social value is being affirmed as a shared value for the target audiences? How are these situations similar or different to a use of the word barbarian in our readings for this class?  Include a quote from EITHER Herodotus OR Thucydides.  How similar or different are the two articles to each other in terms of their use of the term.  (7) be sure to include the following tags as appropriate: NewBarbarians, CLAS3, Herodotus, Thucydides, DoubleBonus

 

 

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