Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Glaukopis' 32452346th return, the Lupercale, and Alcestis & Medea

I would apologize again for my extended absence, but I'm sure anyone still reading this is sick of hearing the excuses! However, I was very excited to read about the discovery of the Lupercale. How cool is that??

In other news, although I am no longer officially a grad student anywhere--alas!--I've been keeping up with a Greek class this semester. It keeps me sane and drives me insane at the same time, but then I guess that's what Greek is all about.

I've also been thinking a lot about the similarities between Alcestis and Medea lately. I know this seems strange at first glance, but they do both subvert male power by outshining their respective husbands. And Alcestis does ask Admetus not to remarry--which is, of course, a far cry from offing the new wife, but it's still limiting Admetus' future chances at procreation.

I have to think more about this and go back over the Medea with the Alcestis at hand too. I sort of feel like the Alcestis is Euripides being subtle, and the Medea is him saying, ok, subtle didn't work? I'll hit you on the head with a 1000 ton hammer.

I don't know. Maybe I'm reading too much Medea into everything else.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Terra marique potens

Arr, I be late fer Talk Like a Pirate Day! Apologies, maties, but me internet's been actin' up! But in honour of Talk Like a Pirate Day, I be readin' (well, skimmin') Map of the Ancient Sea Kings. It be an interestin' read and something fer all good pirates! Landlubbers need be botherin'. arr.

I also be listenin' to The Pirate Queen, which though it not be Classics related, did feature (on stage) the line o' Queen Elizabeth's: "I know when I am being insulted in Latin!"

Well, that an' there be a scene where Grace O'Malley goes off swashbucklin' directly after givin' birth, which reminded me o' Medea ("I'd prefer to stand in battle thrice with a shield than to give birth once."), but that be neither here nor there. Everythin' be remindin' me o' Medea!

Anyway, hope all o' ye talked good an' proper like a pirate today!

Saturday, September 01, 2007

What dreams may come . . .

I wish I could say more was going on here, but it's not. I've been reading some Latin, and I'm going to be taking a Greek course this fall just to keep up during my year off. But right now, there's really very little to report. I'm hesitant to throw up articles everyone else is already posting about anyway.

Oh, and I'm looking for a job. If anyone wants to offer me one, great. ;-)

But I do have a question for all of you lovely Classicists, specifically, a question about dreams!

You see, last night, I was in the unfortunate position of having a dream (nightmare?) about Greek--Greek accents. In this dream, I was trying to type a sigma, and for the life of me, none of my keys would type a regular sigma! I only got a sigma with an accent! I don't remember what kind of accent now, but it horrified me, obviously. Finally, with the advice of someone I know, I marked it in the paper (it was a draft) and planned to cross it out manually.

And this is obviously a really lame dream. I've had better ones. Once I dreamt about finding Latin inscriptions and then finding out that they were left by aliens or somesuch . . .

But, my question--does anyone else dream about these things? I can't be the only one who has ridiculously pedantic dreams about Greek accents, can I??

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Random, Random, Random (well, Jeopardy)

Ok, so I'm back across the pond now, and hopefully we'll see more regular updates.

But firstly, has anyone else been watching celebrity Jeopardy this past week? They've had quite a number of Classics related questions, some of which were imposisbly easy. There was one that was something like "He made Socrates his spokesperson" or whatnot, and I was rather horrified that nobody got it. There was one on Venus, and the last one I saw was a category called "The Iliad, Macbeth, and The Hobbit." It was impossibly easy with answers like "This one was written first." Um, yeah.

Actually, that was a rather ridiculous category, considering all three of the celebs on the show had done theatre before and should thus know something about The Scottish Play, at the very least. And making actors say "Macbeth" is just rather cruel. And completely randomly, Brian Stokes Mitchell was on the show, and he was in Ragtime with Audra McDonald who was the lead in Marie Christine based on Medea--whew!

And actually, Audra McDonald's character in Ragtime nearly killed her child as well because of its father's philandering ways.

Next time, I'll try to be less rambling in my post . . .

Monday, July 09, 2007

Apologies for the super-extended hiatus!

I got caught up in the final paper and the thesis (which is done, whew!) and decided I better cut myself off from the blogging world. Every time I thought I had a moment to notify people of this, I realized I'd get sucked back in (it didn't help that I'd feel obligated to wade through the hundreds of e-mails sitting in my inbox now from the various Classics related lists I'm on :-P). And when that was done, I was faced with a spotty internet connection. Eheu.

So anyway, apologies. I shall attempt to update more regularly again!

Two things I definitely wanted to post about, though:

-Rome Reborn, which you really just have to click on and see for yourself. But it's 3D Rome and amazingly well done.

-Harvard's Latin Salutatory Address--for the Star Wars fan, super amusing. Because Latin and Star Wars seem naturally to go together in my head anyway (don't ask).

I hope these humble gifts are enough to excuse my extended absence.

Internet situation is still a bit spotty, but I shall try my best to catch up and keep up!

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Brush Up Your Shakespeare!

Yes, I know, this is a Classics blog, and how many of us are sick of people asking, "Oh, so you study Shakespeare?" But fear not, I shall related this back to our world of Classics.

I actually did attend phenomenal performances of both Taming of the Shrew and Twelfth Night last weekend, so it saddens me to read that Shakespeare, like our Classical studies, is on a decline. It does not, however, surprise me. I started as an English major, and I too was vexed that my school did not make Shakespeare a requirement for the major. And I have to agree that "earning a bachelor's degree in English without the study of Shakespeare 'is tantamount to fraud.'" (And speaking of which, I think reading these books would also be "tantamount to fraud!)

At this point in college, we cannot assume that every student has read Shakespeare in high school before--because they haven't. Moreover, even if they did, they weren't analyzing his work at the level you do in college. How can you possibly be an English major--no matter what your field--without some Shakespeare?

Back in my earlier undergraduate days, when I was still naive and filled with grand illusions about, well, many things, I took a class called Shakespeare & His Contemporaries. One of the works we were reading was Shakespeare's Troilus and Cressida. There were English majors in that class who hadn't read Shakespeare before (an upper-level English class, and thank goodness these were the ones honest enough to rectify that situation), and moreover, when the prof asked if there was anyone who didn't know the basic story of Troy (this was before the bad movie), sure enough there was at least one person willing to admit that she didn't. She, at least, was willing to learn, but I wonder about a system that allows us to get by without Shakespeare and without Homer. How many English majors are walking away without Shakespeare and thinking that the wretched movie Troy IS actually Homer? There was a time when studying English literature meant you knew something about the Greek & Latin Classics also. Now, some English departments still teach it, but I had a Classics major friend who was seriously told by his English grad student TA that the Iliad and Odyssey were written around 2700 BC (yes, you read that right). My friend told the TA that he was wrong. The TA would not back down. My friend pulled out a reference. The TA said, "Well, there's some debate."

I could tell other horror stories about the Classics (or lack thereof) in English classes, and it's bad enough that Homer's going, but Shakespeare? What kind of English majors are they producing??

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

It's springtime for Glaukopis!

Firstly, Glaukopis does not like blogger's change that forces her to associate this account with a gmail account. Glaukopis is sorely displeased.

Glaukopis also offers apologies for not updating much lately, but Glaukopis has been busy (and jetlagged last week) since her return to the UK.

Also, it's springtime, and you know what that means? It means Glaukopis' allergies are acting up. Fortunately, they are not generally as bad in this country, because it's not riddled with cherry blossoms the way the D.C. area is. You laugh, but Glaukopis has a cherry blossom tree outside her bedroom window at home. You do the math.

However, despite the fact that Glaukopis is using some Claritin equivalent (so says the pharmacist) here, the pollen allergies are now making her sensitive to books. Usually, her book allergies are only set off by ~200 year old books (as she learned when she wrote a paper on John Quincy Adams), but in SPRINGTIME, Glaukopis is apparently sensitive to books printed with bad quality paper. This means Glaukopis is sniffling in the library and bothering both herself and everyone else. Glaukopis would, of course, be indebted to anyone who could offer a medicine that might work against these accursed allergies. Benadryl is not an option, as it puts Glaukopis to sleep!

Anyway, as a reward for reading through all that whining, Glaukopis presents you with a clip found by a friend of hers--an animated version of the Bayeux Tapestry! Glaukopis bets y'all are jealous you didn't think of this first. Glaukopis sure is.