Posted by Dennis » 3 Comments »
Admittedly it wasn’t an inspired decision, but the other day I started off some of my classes with a piece from Nuntii Latini on the reelection of Pervez Musharraf. I thought that having them work through a current event in Latin would arouse some interest, and expected at least some of the students to recognize Musharraf. Not a single student did, and they found the whole thing incomprehensible without careful guidance and a modern history lesson. One student even asked what ‘Pakistaniae’ meant, after he failed to find it in his Latin glossary.
So that was a failure.
Today I was reminded just a bit of some of the silly things kids like to hear about when we came across fenestra, and I taught them defenestration. There was so much joy and laughter upon learning a word that means ‘to throw someone out of a window’, and to be honest I was surprised no one knew the word already. I think maybe I expect too much from them and have missed out on teaching opportunities because of it.
I’d like to hear from anyone who has thoughts on things that capture the interest and enthusiasm of students, however small. Please feel free to comment here.
Posted by Eric » Add Comment »
In M.L. West’s commentary on the Theogony, he remarks in his introduction to the Typhoeus passage (820-80) that it is ‘one of the sections of the Theogony whose authenticity has most often been disputed’, and then briefly summarizes and responds to six arguments that it is not by Hesiod. Here is the third, followed by an important critical principle:
Gaia’s part in producing an enemy to Zeus’ regime is at variance with her benevolence toward Zeus in the rest of the Theogony. Again, comparison of an Oriental parallel (Enuma Elis) helps to explain the anomaly: see p. 24. The assumption of multiple authorship is the most naive of all ways of accounting for contradictions in mythology.