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From: Mark English <menglish@hq.tcfarm.com>

To HLS members,

I teach a class of high school students Classical Literature. Last year we studied four Shakespeare plays in depth, attended local productions, viewed videos and took a trip to the Ashland Shakespearean Festival in southern Oregon.

I have the same students this year and decided to move on to more difficult subject matter. We are beginning with The Iliad (Richmond Lattimore translation), The Odyssey, The Last Days of Socrates, then finishing in the spring with two historical novels from the time of Christ (The Robe and The Bronze Bow). We are thus progressing through ancient history via literature.

Several hundred hours were spent this summer preparing study guides to connect their reading with the rich Greek mythology. I utilized Edith Hamilton's works, Malcolm Willcock's guide, the Oxford Companion to Classical Lit., etc. in preparing the study guide. By the time they finish The Iliad, along with a 28 page study guide, they will have a basic understanding of the four myth cycles. The study guides I prepared require students to paraphrase, look up vocabulary, and define attributes of the various deities, and their principal roles in mythology.

I am seeking specific recommendations from HLS members for play selections to read aloud during class time. Most of their work is done at home, questions are e-mailed to me in between meetings (three times per month). During class I lecture, and read selections from Moses, David, Solomon, Homer, Hesiod, Isaiah, Aesop, Sappho, Aeschylus, Sophocles, Herodotus, Euripides, Socrates, etc., on through Josephus and Philo (next spring). It is difficult to select portions from plays to represent an authors style, viewpoint, and purpose since I have not read all the plays myself. Are there any HLS members with ideas for specific selections to read aloud? My students will never have time to read all the plays, my intention is to make them familiar with the best, a sort of anthology representing Greek Tragedy and Old Comedy. I would sincerely appreciate input from HLS members better acquainted with Greek tragedy and comedy than myself. Mrs. English

Please send helpful comments to my e-mail address; menglish@hq.tcfarm.com

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