Classical Studies explores ancient Greek and Roman culture across the Mediterranean basin, from the second millennium B.C.E. to the fall of the Roman Empire in the West. The organizing idea of the field is not a single method or a discipline, but the study of Greco-Roman antiquity (and its influence up to the present day) in all its richness and diversity, its familiarity and its strangeness. Classical Studies encompasses languages and literatures, archaeology, history, art history, politics, law, science, philosophy, religion, and mythology. In this respect, it is the original and most wide-ranging of interdisciplinary fields. It can thus stand alone as a dynamic and challenging field of study or can complement almost any other major in a liberal arts program.
The Department of Classical Studies offers two major programs: Classics and Classical Civilization. The Classics major combines work in both Greek and Latin with course work in English on the history, literature, society, and material culture of the ancient world. The Classical Civilization major requires the study of either Greek or Latin, together with course work in English on different aspects of the ancient world. Classes in Greek and Latin are conducted in English and encourage close analysis of the ancient texts, with emphasis on their literary and historical values. Students interested in studying classical archaeology can do so within either the Classics or Classical Civilization majors. Students wishing to pursue graduate work in Classics should ideally take course work in both Greek and Latin at the 300 level and begin the study of German, French, or Italian.
The Classical Studies Department offers students the opportunity to explore the ancient world through an integrated, cohesive program of courses worked out by the student and faculty advisor. Individual programs are tailored to meet students’ specific interests, such as classical literature, archaeology, ancient theatre, ancient philosophy, law, political theory, ancient religion, material culture, and the classical tradition.