Classics

Classics at the Claremont Colleges is an intercollegiate program, with participating faculty members from Pomona, Scripps, Claremont McKenna, and Pitzer. Classics courses taught at the other colleges count as Scripps courses. The Classics Department offers a major and a minor in Classics and a major in Late Antique-Medieval Studies (LAMS).

Classics is an interdisciplinary major. The study of the ancient world combines archaeology, philology, history, philosophy, gender studies, and anthropology – among other disciplines. While “Classics” is the name traditionally given to the study of ancient Greece and Rome from about 1300 BC (late Bronze Age) to 600 CE (Late Antiquity),the department  also sponsors study of the diverse cultures of the ancient Mediterranean. Courses provide students with the opportunity to read ancient literature both in the original languages and in English translation, and to explore the life and culture of antiquity. But the cultures of ancient Greece and Rome have also cast a long shadow over subsequent ages, and the study of Classics also involves understanding our relationship with the past. Many courses thus study the reception of antiquity and its influential role in shaping  modernity. Students pursuing a major or minor in Classics are encouraged to study abroad in Athens or Rome (e.g., courses taken at College Year in Athens and at the Intercollegiate Center for Classical Studies in Rome typically count towards the major or minor in Classics). Language courses in Greek, Latin, or classical Hebrew fulfill the college’s language requirement

There are two tracks for the major. The first track in classical languages is designed for students who intend to study classical languages in depth. Students considering graduate school in Classical/Ancient Studies or interested in ancient languages should choose this track. The second track in classical studies is designed for students who desire a comprehensive background in the ancient worlds, as they plan for future studies in law, medicine, business, or the many other pursuits for which a liberal arts education is essential.

There are two related tracks for the minor. The Minor in Classical Languages allows students to combine the study of Greek or Latin with courses in ancient culture. The Minor in Classical Civilization is designed for maximum flexibility in students’ interests; it has no language requirement. A minor in Classics completments the study of related fields (e.g., History, English, Philosophy, Humanities, Art History, and Archaeology) and is ideal for students desiring more knowldege about the ancient world while pursuing other interests.

Scripps Faculty

Ellen Finkelpearl
Helen Chandler Garland Professor of Ancient Studies
Professor of Classics

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David Kawalko Roselli
Director of the Core Curriculum
Associate Professor of Classics
(909) 607-3058

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Department Goals and Objectives

  1. Proficiency at languages.
  2. Skill at philological interpretation.
  3. Formal analysis: students will acquire a basic understanding of how to read and/or interpret texts and artifacts (e.g., archaeological evidence, inscriptions) from the ancient world.
  4. Knowledge of historical and cultural contexts: students will be able to reproduce in broad outline the main periods of Greek and Roman history, along with significant events and/or developments in each period. Students will also be able to demonstrate their awareness of basic social, political, literary, philosophical, and artistic developments.
  5. Proficiency in research methods: students will be able to produce scholarly work that demonstrates a knowledge and understanding of (1) the evidence from the ancient world, (2) past critical approaches to this evidence, and (3) more recent research critical approaches.

Student Learning Outcomes

  • SLO1: Students will be able to translate a variety of works in a variety of genres from the original Greek or Latin into English.
  • SLO2: Students will be able to comment meaningfully on aspects of style, word choice, structure of argument, and basic textual problems.
  • SLO3: Students demonstrate knowledge of ancient Greek and Latin through tests on syntax, vocabulary, and translation.
  • SLO4: In upper-level language courses (4th semester and beyond), students produce a short paper demonstrating knowledge of textual interpretation and historical context.
  • SLO5: Students produce research papers demonstrating their understanding of historical and cultural changes in the ancient world and their skill in interpreting texts and artifacts.
  • SLO6: Students produce a senior thesis demonstrating their command of research methods, knowledge of the relevant historical and cultural changes, and skill in interpreting texts and artifacts.