Classics 220 (Classical Tradition)/ Topic for Paper #1
For the following topic, write a thoughtful, well-developed 4-5 page typed double-spaced
paper in accordance with the specified guidelines (see paper criteria). Due Nov. 7 — hand in a hard copy in class.
Choose a major mythological character from the following list and trace his/her literary portrayal and development from classical times (of Greece and Rome) up through the medieval and/or Renaissance eras. A few key artistic (ancient, or modern) representations of the mythic figure can be included and analyzed, and even important cinematic versions can be discussed. But remember that the focus should remain primarily on the literature (for example, if a film is referenced, explain (if possible) how the screenplay adapts/modifies an earlier modern script and then note how that text differs from the classical depiction. Discuss any significant social, political, or cultural values which may account for the specific changes to the myth or its central character in subsequent time periods. Select from Orpheus (and Eurydice), Penelope (Odysseus wife), Phaedra (and Hippolytus), Adonis (and Venus), Demeter/Persephone, or Endymion (and Selene, or Diana). (If you want to research another mythic figure (i.e. one not on this list), you must convince me of the viability of the alternate topic and get my expressed approval by Oct. 24 otherwise, no credit will be given for papers written on other characters/myths)
A good starting point for your research will be the relevant entries in Anthony Graftons
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