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CLA 121 — The Odyssey

Quarter: Fall
Day(s): Mondays
Course Format: On campus
Duration: 5 weeks
Date(s): Oct 17—Nov 14
Time: 7:00—8:50 pm
Drop Deadline: Oct 30
Unit(s): 1 Units
Tuition: $240
On campus
7:00—8:50 pm
Oct 17—Nov 14
5 weeks
Drop By
Oct 30
1 Units
This course is the second in a three-year sequence in which we are studying the three greatest epic poems from ancient Greece and Rome: The Iliad, Odyssey, and Aeneid. The Odyssey is Homer’s irresistible story of a hero’s ten-year return from Troy to Ithaca and of his painful but triumphant restitution to his family and his kingship. The characters are unforgettable and the themes are universal: love, sex, loyalty, father and son, husband and wife, with the powerful and fickle Greek gods presiding over almost everything. We will learn about the epic tradition, the question of Homer’s very existence, and the ways in which the poem has survived to our age. Above all, we will become as intensely familiar as we can with the profound issues and incomparable poetry of this dazzling text. Students will read the translations by both Lattimore and Fagles.

There will be no assumption whatsoever that students in this course have also taken last year’s Iliad course. This will certainly be a “first” experience with Homer for many in the course.

Marsh McCall, Professor of Classics, Emeritus; Founder and Dean of Continuing Studies, Emeritus, Stanford

Marsh McCall has taught at Stanford for forty years. He has taught many popular Continuing Studies courses and Master of Liberal Arts seminars. He has received the Lloyd W. Dinkelspiel Award for Distinctive Contributions to Undergraduate Education, the annual Phi Beta Kappa Undergraduate Teaching Award, the Alumni Association’s Richard W. Lyman Award for exceptional volunteer service to Stanford, and the Dean’s Award for Lifetime Achievements in Teaching in the School of Humanities and Sciences. He received a PhD from Harvard.

Textbooks for this course:

(Required) Homer (Author) Richmond Lattimore (Translator), The Odyssey (Lattimore translation) (ISBN 978-0061244186)
(Required) Homer (Author), Robert Fagles (Translator), The Odyssey (Fagles translation) (ISBN 978-0140268867)