Humanities 110

Syllabus | Fall 2015

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Required Texts

  • Aeschylus, The Oresteia, trans. Fagles (Penguin)
  • Anonymous, The Epic of Gilgamesh, trans. George (Penguin)
  • New Oxford Annotated Bible with the Apocrypha, trans. Coogan, et al. (Oxford)
  • Curd, ed., Presocratics Reader: Selected Fragments and Testimonia, trans. McKirahan (Hackett)
  • Freeman, Egypt, Greece and Rome (Oxford)
  • Herodotus, The Histories, trans. Selincourt (Penguin)
  • Hesiod, Theogony and Works and Days, trans. Lombardo (Hackett)
  • Homer, The Iliad, trans. Lattimore (Chicago)
  • Miller, Greek Lyric: An Anthology in Translation (Hackett)
  • The Tale of Sinuhe and Other Ancient Egyptian Poems, trans. Parkinson (Oxford)
  • Sophocles, Sophocles I: Oedipus the King, Oedipus at Colonus, Antigone, trans. Grene and Lattimore (Chicago)
  • Thucydides, The Peloponnesian War, trans. Warner (Penguin)
  • Various Readings on The Ancient Mediterranean and Western Asia available on e-reserves


To access texts that are listed as being on e-reserves, find the day's reading assignments and follow the link to the text. You will need your kerberos username and password to be able to access the texts. Learn more about accessing e-reserves on Moodle. Please bring a copy of the day's reading assignment to class.

Recommended Texts

Williams and Colomb, The Craft of Argument (Concise Edition) (Chicago)
Harvey, The Nuts and Bolts of College Writing (Hackett)

All texts may be purchased at the Reed College Bookstore; limited numbers of each are on reserve in Hauser Library. Also on reserve or in the reference section: Oxford Classical Dictionary; Oxford Companion to Classical Literature; Anchor Atlas of World History, Volume I; Richard Lanham, Revising Prose.

Conference Assignments

The Registrar makes initial assignments to conferences in this course that continue through the year. Students who subsequently find it necessary to change conferences must petition the Humanities staff (forms for this purpose may be obtained from the Registrar or from Kathy Kennedy, Chem 303). Return completed forms to Tamara Metz, chair of Hum 110. No conference changes will be permitted after the second week of the term.

Papers, Writing Assignments, and Examinations

Three course-wide papers will be assigned, due at the times designated on the schedule of readings and lectures; at least one of these papers will be revised. Individual conference leaders may assign additional writing. If the due date for an assignment conflicts with a religious holiday or obligation that you wish to observe, please consult with your conference leader. A four-hour final examination for the fall semester will be given Thursday, Dec. 15, 6:00 – 10:00 pm in Vollum Lecture Hall. Rescheduling of the final exam will be allowed only for medical reasons

Writing Center

You can get additional help with all stages of the writing process from the Writing Center located in the Dorothy Johansen House. Drop-in help from writing tutors is available Sunday – Thursday, 6 p.m.-10 p.m.; additional hours will also be available during weeks that a paper is due (contact the Writing Center for more information).

Schedule of Readings and Lectures
(first two weeks)

The Ancient Mediterranean and Western Asia

Timeline for the texts covered this semester

+ Expand Weeks | - Collapse Weeks

Week 1

Mon 31 Aug

Anonymous, The Epic of Gilgamesh, pp. xiii-lii, 1-100, 175-195;
Freeman, Egypt, Greece and Rome, pp. 1-18.

Lecture: Panel Discussion

Wed 2 Sept

Anonymous, The Epic of Gilgamesh
Freeman, pp. 19-39.

Lecture: "Gilgamesh and the Humanities" / Sonia Sabnis

Fri 4 Sept

Anonymous, The Epic of Gilgamesh;
The Code of Hammurabi (online)

Lecture: "Of Gods, Kings, and Law" / David Garrett

Week 2

Mon 7 Sept

Labor Day Holiday. No class.

Wed 9 Sept

"The Great Hymn to Osiris" (Lichtheim II: 81-86) (on e-reserves);
"Coffin Text 148" (Simpson 263-65) (on e-reserves);
"Horus and Seth" (Lichtheim II: 214-23) (on e-reserves);
Freeman, pp. 40-62;
Visual Images: study these images before lecture and conference.

Lecture: "Sirius Rising: Religion and Art in Ancient Egypt" / Pancho Savery

Fri 11 Sept

"Pyramid Texts" (Lichtheim I: 29-50) and "Coffin Texts" (Lichtheim I: 131-133) (on e-reserves);
"The Book of the Dead" (Lichtheim II: 119-132) (on e-reserves);
"The Dialogue of a Man and His Soul", Tale of Sinuhe and Other Egyptian Poems, pp. 151-65;
Freeman, pp. 63-79;
Visual Images: study these images before lecture and conference.

Lecture: "Tomorrow is the Question: The Literature of Death" / Pancho Savery

FIRST PAPER DUE: Saturday, Sept 12, 5:00 PM