CL1SO-Ancient Song

Module Provider: Classics
Number of credits: 20 [10 ECTS credits]
Terms in which taught: Spring term module
Non-modular pre-requisites:
Modules excluded:
Current from: 2018/9

Module Convenor: Prof Peter Kruschwitz


Type of module:

Summary module description:
This module introduces students to the lyric poetry of ancient Greece and Rome, studying authors from both civilisations and considering a range of thematic approaches to the surviving corpus of poetry. It is intended to be suitable for beginners and for those who have studied some ancient literature before; there is no language requirement, but there will be an opportunity for students who do have relevant skills to employ them in their coursework and exams.

•To equip students with knowledge and understanding of key ancient lyrical texts.
•To introduce students to the world of ancient song and music.
•To offer a broad discussion of the context and significance of song and musical performance in ancient societies.
•To gain an understanding of key trends in past scholarship on the subject.

Assessable learning outcomes:
By the end of the module it is expected that the student will be able to:?
•demonstrate in-depth knowledge of the authors, sub-genres, and major themes of the lyric poetry of ancient Greece and Rome.
•relate the interpretation of ancient lyric poetry to the contexts in which it was composed and performed, and to the wider literary tradition;
•complement the evidence and arguments presented in the lectures and seminars with additional information assembled by their own research;
•analyse in detail selected passages of ancient writing;
•articulate their arguments effectively and illustrate them with relevant evidence;
•recognise and criticise key arguments made in recent scholarship.
- frame their own research question

Additional outcomes:
The module also aims to encourage the development of oral communication skills and the student's effectiveness in group situations. Students are also encouraged to develop their IT skills by use of computer resources.

Outline content:

The course covers provides an introduction to ancient song, considering the major themes attendant on the study of lyric (oral performance/written text’ personal /public; social context; music and rhythm; sources) and looks at some of the principal authors in Greek and Latin: Alcman, Tyrtaeus, Sappho, Alcaeus, Stesichorus, Simonides, Bacchylides, Pindar, Catullus, Horace, and the Hadrianic poets. This material is covered in broad chronological order as well as thematically in lectures, with seminars to reinforce and develop this material with a selection of relevant ancient texts and related sources. The course represents current thinking and research on the various subjects covered, introducing even those students with prior experience of classical studies to new areas and methods. No specific knowledge is expected as a prerequisite for this module, but readiness to do significant preparatory reading is presupposed.

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:
The module will be taught by lectures and seminars with two or three contact hours per week.

Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Lectures 20
Seminars 6
Guided independent study 174
Total hours by term 200.00
Total hours for module 200.00

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Written exam 50
Written assignment including essay 50

Summative assessment- Examinations:
One paper of two hours.

Summative assessment- Coursework and in-class tests:
Summative coursework will consist of one essay of 2,000-2,500 words, which must be submitted by 12.00 noon on Thursday, Week 11, Spring Term.


One paper of two hours, requiring one compulsory comment question and one essay.

Formative assessment methods:

The module will incorporate an interim assessment comprising an annotated bibliography. This will be due before 12.00 noon on Wednesday, Week 7, Spring term.

Penalties for late submission:
The Module Convener will apply the following penalties for work submitted late:

  • where the piece of work is submitted after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): 10% of the total marks available for that piece of work will be deducted from the mark for each working day[1] (or part thereof) following the deadline up to a total of five working days;
  • where the piece of work is submitted more than five working days after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): a mark of zero will be recorded.

  • The University policy statement on penalties for late submission can be found at:
    You are strongly advised to ensure that coursework is submitted by the relevant deadline. You should note that it is advisable to submit work in an unfinished state rather than to fail to submit any work.

    Assessment requirements for a pass:
    A grade of 40% overall.

    Reassessment arrangements:
    Re-examination in August. Coursework must be resubmitted in August.

    Additional Costs (specified where applicable):
    1) Required text books:
    2) Specialist equipment or materials:
    3) Specialist clothing, footwear or headgear:
    4) Printing and binding:
    5) Computers and devices with a particular specification:
    6) Travel, accommodation and subsistence:

    Last updated: 20 April 2018


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