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Language and Culture

LATIN 321/322

Language and Culture

  • Course ID:LATIN 321/322
  • Semesters:2
  • Department:Classics
  • Teachers:Joseph Bissex

Description and Objectives

The objective of this course is to understand how the Romans and their Greek influences shaped our modern ideas about language, literature, art, education, government, and family life. Students will achieve this synthesis by encountering original source material and modern fiction and prose, supplemented by Latin derivatives work. Increased fluency in English reading and writing is an accompanying objective.

Latin Language and Culture Syllabus ’21-’22

Topics Covered

  • Greek and Roman myth, drama, history and lifestyle, and their modern adaptations.
  • Early and modern Christian, dramatic, and philosophical use of Latin.
  • Vocabulary and fluency development.


  • Selections from Apollodorus, Ovid, Plutarch, Aeschylus, and Sophocles
  • Selections from Shakespeare, Hawthorne, Kipling
  • Selections from Justin Martyr, Ignatius of Loyola, Thomas Aquinas, papal encyclicals, et al.
  • Augustus, by John Williams

Course Requirements

  • Completion of all readings and assignments by if not before the given due date.
  • Active class participation.
  • Evidence of care in preparation for written, oral, and performance assignments
  • Maintenance of the source binder, which will contain all assignments and class notes as well


Assignments include but are not limited to:

  • In-class seminar discussions
  • In-class readings of dramatic literature
  • Monologue performances
  • Journal entries imitating character voice
  • 1-2 essays per quarter, literary analyses of approved works.
  • Binder notes and images reviews

Assignments are pass/fail, and quarter grades are determined by the percentage of passed assignments. Deadlines will be generous, to allow for rewrites and redos, but no credit will be given for late assignments. It is the sole responsibility of the student to communicate any exceptional or prohibiting circumstances.

Successful Students

  • Successful students will be on time and prepared to engage the material. They will display attentiveness to detail, will come to class with binder and other texts as required, will always have pencil and highlighter at hand, and will foster habits of creative initiative and a collaborative spirit.