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Semester 1

Roman Satire (CLTR10020)


Classical Literature in Translation





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Visiting students must have taken at least 3 courses in Classics related subject matter (at least 2 of which should be in Classical Literature) at grade B or above for entry to this course. We will only consider University/College level courses. Applicants should note that, as with other popular courses, meeting the minimum academic entry requirements does NOT guarantee admission. **Please note that 3rd year Classics courses are very popular and have strict visiting student quotas, meaning that they have a very high number of students wishing to enrol in a very limited number of spaces.** These enrolments are managed strictly by the Visiting Student Office, in line with the quotas allocated by the department, and all enquiries to enrol in these courses must be made through the CAHSS Visiting Student Office. It is not appropriate for students to contact the department directly to request additional spaces. Please note that this course may incur additional costs for course texts. Students cannot take this course alongside Latin Satire LATI10004 or Classical Literature 2 CLTR08008.

Course Summary

Satire is an entertaining, provocative, and powerful literary genre that the Romans claimed as their own invention. This course will focus (in translation) on the satirists of the late Republic and early Empire, including Lucilius, Horace, Persius, Seneca the Younger, and Juvenal; modern descendants will also feature. Alongside questions of genre and literary technique, attention will be given to historical and sociopolitical contexts: satiric themes include society, morality, class, politics, authority, freedom of speech, patronage, literature, food, sex, and obscenity.

Course Description

The satiric authors studied in this course will typically include Horace, Persius, Seneca and Juvenal. The teaching programme is broadly divided into two phases: the first will introduce the satirists in chronological order, examining in each case what and when they wrote, and looking at what the satirists themselves say about their genre; the second part of the course will focus on a number of themes common to each of the satirists. Within this structure, lectures and workshops will aim to understand satire as a genre and to practise certain critical methodologies of use in its study, with close analysis of selected texts and tutorial-style discussion of wider themes and contexts. The following eleven-week schedule (which may change according to the interests of the lecturer) will give an indication of the shape of the course in any given year: Week 1: Introduction: what is satire?; approaches to satire ancient and modern; Week 2: Horace: text & context; programmatic satire; Week 3: Persius: text & context; programmatic satire; Week 4: Seneca: text & context; programmatic satire; Week 5: Juvenal: text & context; programmatic satire; Week 6: Workshops: using commentaries and writing critical analyses; Week 7: Satiric themes: patronage and food; Week 8: Satiric themes: gender and sexuality; Week 9: Satiric themes: town and country; philosophy; Week 10: Satiric themes: epic parody; class; Week 11: Conclusion and overview

Assessment Information

Written Exam 50%, Coursework 50%, Practical Exam 0%

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All course information obtained from this visiting student course finder should be regarded as provisional. We cannot guarantee that places will be available for any particular course. For more information, please see the visiting student disclaimer:

Visiting student disclaimer