Syllabus [Classics 44><CompLit 18.5><English 50.91]     Makings of Pastoral Myth
{click here for images & description (http://academic.brooklyn.cuny.edu/classics/jvsickle/03s-past.htm)}  E-mail Professor Van Sickle
[Tu & Th, 1:40-2:55, with support in Blackboard on-line at http://blackboard.brooklyn.cuny.edu/index.html]
Course requirements, assignments to read & discuss;  two essays [one & two] on topics arising from reading & discussion; also a final essay. Books required.
Wk 1: 
J 28 & 30
Read before coming to class so that we can discuss the following:
[c(irc)a='around' marks dates as approximate]
 Look for sets of motifs that recur in different contexts & how they resemble yet differ (similarity yet difference) In particular, seek out motifs of time, place, kinds of work (special roles in country & in city, e.g. weaving, herding, ruling the unruly), the arts (song which joins poetry & music).

J 28
Sumerian tradition [ca 3000-2000 BCE] Inanna & Dumuzi [compare to Psalm 23, "prepareth a table"), also Inanna (goddess of LOVE/WAR, cf. AMOR/ROMA) & her lover, the SHEPHERD-KING Dumuzi. Cf. King Solomon & the Queen of Sheba
[Sumerian chronology, click here]
J 28 Hebrew tradition: Moses [ca 1300 BCE: from an unpretentious chronology] Moses [many versions, but here is one basic text]: his birth & marriage also another version  Moses as shepherd & what he sees & hears
[not mishnah but mishmash: as many chronologies  as sects that incorporate Moses into their teachings & beliefs (click for samples & smile or weep!!)]
J 28 Tu ca 1000 BCE
[chronology conflicted]
David, shepherd, psalmist & king: 
Psalm 23 
background, not required but nice: Roman Catholic encyclopedia & an unorthodox view  with fuller scholarly background.
J 30
Th
Greek tradition
[War at Troy: ca 1200 BCE]
Homer [ca 800], "Shield of Achilles" Iliad 18(th book=scroll or volume).(lines) 478-607 [translated by Richmond Lattimore] another text of the shield [also outline of motifs by JVS & many discussions on the web; thematic chart: 
cosmos < [city*/country*{agriculture/pastoral}] dance, music, song*>ocean 
(* motifs of music occur & recur in structure)
J 30
Th
. Homer [ca 800], "Shepherd Monster:  Polyphemus (Cyclops)," Odyssey 9(th book=scroll or volume)  lecture by jvs on Odyssey & images of "Monstrous Other" as clues to a culture's norms
J 30
Th
. Hesiod [ca 750 BCE], Theogony, Invocation to the Muses [lines 1-29 lines 30-51 lines 52-62 lines 63-102] Hesiod shepherding on sacred mountain (Helicon) endowed by Muses (daughters of Zeus & Memory) with power to speak truth & discourse like truth that brings forgetfulness of ills
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Weeks 2 & 3 Theocritus [Greek: c3 BCE, Syracuse, Alexandria]
Idylls 1, 2, 3, 4, 6, 7, 11
Contexts: referential to present? recursive to past? [Remaking Homer for a new world (cosmopolitan city, Greek kingdom, library): new brand of hero & epic song, new poetic authority]
Feb. 4 Tu Idyll 1 [Sicily, Arethusa] roles of goatherd, shepherd, cowherd? music inherited from Pan (Arcadia)? memory? art? struggle against love
Feb. 6 Th Idyll 2, 3, 4 [Alexandria, Italy] city vs country, powers of song??
Feb. 11 Tu Idylls 6, 11 [Sicily] Cyclops in love, cf. Odyssey, love & song?
Feb. 13 Th Idyll 7 memory of Homer, Hesiod, Daphnis, city vs country, love channeled, distanced, contained? new authority for art?
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Weeks 4, 5, & 6 Virgil [Rome: 70-19 BCE] Bucolics 1- 10 [chart of motifs across Theocritus, Virgil &  Spenser] Contexts: referential to present? recursive to past? [Remaking Theocritus for Rome: Homer to be reclaimed (Roman history): new brand of hero & epic song, new poetic authority (ROMA/AMOR)]
Feb. 18 Tu Bucolic  (aka eclogue) 1 Contexts: role of  Rome? revision of Theocritus (Idd. 7 & 3 & 1); also Hesiod, Theogony 1-102
Feb. 20 Th Bucolics  (eclogues) 2 & 3 revision of Theocritus (Idd. 11, 2, 6; Homer, Odyssey 9]
Feb. 25 Tu Bucolics  (eclogues)  4 & 5  Contexts: references to Roman history? revsions of tradition?
Feb. 27 Th Bucolics  (eclogues) 6 & 7  Contexts: Roman history? Theocritus? previous eclogues?
Mar. 4 Tu Bucolics  (eclogues) 8 & 9 Contexts: Roman history? previous eclogues? Theocritus? 
Mar. 6 Th Bucolics  (eclogues) 10 Contexts: Roman life? previous eclogues? Theocritus?
Mar. 6 Th first working essay due [7 to 10 paragraphs]  on a topic arising from reading & discussion on a topic arising from reading & discussion
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Weeks 7, 8, & 9 Edmund  Spenser [1552?-1599] Shepheardes Calendar & Fairie Queene  1, 4, 6, 9, 10, 11, 12 &  Sixth Book 1-7,Cantos IX-XII Remaking Virgil for the England of Queen Elizabeth I: pastoral & epic
Mar. 11 Tu SC 1 Making song suit season
 13 Th SC 4 & 6 .
Mar. 18 Tu SC 9-10 .
20 Th SC 11-12 .
Mar. 25 Tu FQ VI.1-3 .
 27 Th FQ VI.4-7 .
Week 10 John Milton [1608-1674] Lycidas Chart of mythemes [click here] 
Apr. 1 Tu Read whole poem Inner coherence? Contexts: referential to present? recursive to past?
Apr. 3 Th Continue discusson .
. Second working essay due [8 to 14 paragraphs on a topic arising from further reading & discussion
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Week 11
Apr. 8 Tu
William Wordsworth [1770-1850] Preludes, Book 1 Look for pattern of journey
Apr. 10 Th . .
Week 12
Apr. 29
Charles Dickens [1812-1870] Bleak House 
[Selections from indicated] 
.
May 1 . .
Weeks 13 & 14 Robert Frost [1875-1963]  North of Boston .
May 6 Tu . .
May 8 Th . .
May 13 Tu . .
May 15 . .
Week 15 Final examination: a final, comparative report will be handed in. .
Required Texts:  Theocritus, Idylls; Virgil, Bucolics (eclogues); Spenser, Shepheardes Calendar, Faerie Queene; Milton, Lycidas; Wordsworth, Preludes; Dickens, Bleak House; Frost, North of Boston.
[back to top] For images & course plan, click here.  .