Specifications for Final Paper
As noted on the syllabus, your chief assignment for this course will be a RESEARCH PAPER of a MINIMUM LENGTH OF 15 PAGES of written text. The paper is DUE BY THE LAST DAY OF CLASSES - DECEMBER 10TH.
You are free to write on any topic pertinent to this course that interests you. You MUST, however, concentrate on using an ancient text or texts as the basis of your paper, e.g., a play or plays of Euripides, the poems of Theognis, Demosthenes' speech Against Neaera, Aischines' speech Against Timarkhos, etc. Use the text(s) to illustrate, prove, disprove your point, e.g., "The heroines of the Alcestis and Medea demonstrate that women in classical Athens could not have been as suppressed and sequestered as some historical sources and modern scholars would have us believe," or "The heroines of the Alcestis and Medea offer clear descriptions of the suppression of women in classical Athens and confirm other historical evidence and the opinions of many modern scholars."
The references in these examples to other evidence and modern scholars introduce another element of the paper that MUST be present. You need to incorporate other material on the subject; do not treat the sources you are working with in a vacuum! Use the ideas of scholar's such as Foucault, Keuls, Pomeroy, Dover, etc., where applicable to support your view or, if you disagree with their interpretation, to argue against them. I'm looking for a thoughtful and complete piece of work. As you have no doubt noticed, this course provides few "solid" answers to the issues. That is where your paper comes in. The task before you is to use your own thought and critical faculties to come to a CONCLUSION yourself on a specific issue.
Step 2 is to write up a ONE-PAGE abstract/proposal of what you want to work on - DUE NOVEMBER 8TH. It should include the topic itself, what direction you want to take it in, and what sources (both ancient and modern) you can think of right off the bat that you can use. Also use the abstract to ASK ME QUESTIONS. If you have an idea but don't know what sources you could go to, put that as a question in the abstract and I WILL DIRECT YOU.
Step 3 is to READ THE ANCIENT SOURCES. Get what YOU can out of them BEFORE you cloud your mind with what others have said! Use your own thought and ideas to determine whether the scholarship is useful to you or not.
Step 4 involves then going to the scholarship. For a start, look through the contents and index of books you have for the course. See what Foucault, Keuls, etc. might have to say about your.topic. Do the same for the BOOKS ON RESERVE for this course in the library. Further research can be done through the library catalogue by doing SUBJECT SEARCHES for "Women and Greece," "Euripides," "Homosexuality and Antiquity," "Women and Law and Greece," etc. A fundamental place to start any research in Classics is the OXFORD CLASSICAL DICTIONARY (in library reference) which will give you a basic bibliography on the topic at the end of each article.