Skidmore College
Classics 224:  The Hero(ine's) Tale
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Semester project:  Reinventing Homer
 
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Semester project
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Course syllabusCourse timetableOnline resourcesReturn to the CL 224 homepage
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Phase III (4 May)

Phase I (9 Mar)
Phase II (13 Apr)
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The theme for our semester project is "Reinventing Homer."  You will produce a work that echoes and transforms Homeric subject matter or themes.  This kind of endeavor was of great concern to the ancients:  throughout the term we shall spotlight various classical works that adapt Homer.

The medium in which you work is entirely your choice—visual, audial, textual or a combination of these.  Pick a medium that plays to your creative strengths.

This project is conceived as a solo venture, but you may collaborate with other students if you wish.  Note, however, that group projects will have extra requirements so that I can assess both individual and collective contributions.

The project has three phases:

blank Phase I: ends 9 March
Phase II: ends 13 April
Phase III: ends 4 May
The completed works will be presented at a special session on 4 May at 8:30 p.m.  There will be food and friends, and a chance to see what your peers have been up to.

If you have any questions or comments, please contact me.
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Phase I:  ends 9 March 1999.  (Written requirement)

During this phase you will decide subject, scope, and medium of your project.  Use the following guidelines to generate three potential ideas, which you will explain to me in a brief write-up.

A.  Choose a medium.  Do this first, because it is probably the easiest decision to make, and because it is also the most fundamental.

If you paint, draw, sculpt, or have some other artistic talent or passion, opt for the visual.  If you sing or play an instrument, opt for the musical.  If you love to write, opt for the textual.  In theory, there are no limitations on the form of your Homeric reinvention.

B.  Choose your subject.  What will you present in your medium?  Will you retell the Iliad?  Will you go in between books of the Odyssey?  Will you show what happens ten years after Odysseus' return?  The choice is yours.  The only stricture is that your subject must clearly be Homeric;  that is, one should be able to see the genesis of your project in either text.

C.  Choose your scope.  What can you reasonably accomplish in two months?  Be ambitious, but not overly so.  Note that I may "advise" you to do less or more, depending on my assessment of your preliminary ideas.

Written requirement.  List your three ideas.  Discuss each idea in one paragraph, stating the reason(s) why it interests you.  Conclude with a fourth paragraph on which idea you believe will make the best project.

Your write-up is due 9 March in class, and must be typed and double spaced.
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Phase II:  ends 13 April 1999.  (Written requirement)

During this phase you will flesh out your project according to the guidelines below.  You will summarize your activities during this phase with a brief write-up, which must be accompanied by evidence of your progress.

I realize that everyone works at her or his own pace, and that every project requires its own time-frame.  What I am looking for is not a finished project, nor the same stage of advancement from every student.  Rather I am looking for evidence that you have gone beyond the primary idea-gathering phase, and that you are well into the idea-shaping phase.

In other words, I shall look for the following, depending on the medium of your project:

For visual media (drawings, paintings, photographs, collages, and so on) please show me preliminary sketches or studies, as well as any materials you may have gathered in planning your project.

For written media (poems, letters, stories, and the like) please show me a detailed outline as well as some actual text:  a long scene or passage, or samples of smaller ones.

For performed media (plays, monologues, films, and so on) you may show me either storyboards or outlines or both, as well as actual footage or script.

If you have any questions as to what constitutes proof, then contact me.  If I detect a lack of progress in your project at the end of this phase, your grade will reflect it.

Written requirement.  Accompanying your evidence must be a one-page write-up of your activities during phase 2.  Summarize what you did, how you did it, when, why, and any other pertinent information.

Your write-up is due 13 April in class, and must be typed and double spaced.
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Phase III:  ends 4 May 1999.  (Written requirement)

During this phase you will finish your project and summarize your activities during this phase with a brief write-up.

Complete your project as seems best to you, using my comments on phase 2 for gudiance, if desired.  Since I will collect the projects in class on the 4th and get them ready for the presentation that night, they must be in their final form at the time of collection.  If you have any special instructions for presentation please include them so that I can set up your work as it was meant to be seen.

If you have any questions as to what constitutes completion, then contact me.  If I detect a lack of closure in your project at the end of this phase, your grade will reflect it.

Written requirement.  Accompanying your project must be a one-to-two-page write-up of your activities during phase 3.  Summarize what you did, how you did it, when, why, and any other pertinent information.

In addition, please discuss whether or not this project was useful, and how it helped you understand the process of both conforming to or violating the epic tradition.

Your write-up is due with your completed project in class on 4 May, and must be typed and double spaced.
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Last modified 27 April 1999