Module Catalogue 2020/21

CAH2020 : Greek and Roman Religions

  • Offered for Year: 2020/21
  • Module Leader(s): Dr Matthew Haysom
  • Lecturer: Professor Federico Santangelo
  • Owning School: History, Classics and Archaeology
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus
Semesters
Semester 1 Credit Value: 20
ECTS Credits: 10.0
Pre Requisites
Pre Requisite Comment

N/A

Co Requisites
Co Requisite Comment

N/A

Aims

This module aims:
• To provide students with a critical understanding of the key debates in the study of Greek and Roman religion
• To provide students with an insight into some of the theoretical influences on classics: social anthropology, structuralism, gender theory, etc.
• To provide students with a critical understanding of the key sources of evidence that are available to classicists studying subjects related to ancient religions: a variety of ancient literary genres (history, tragedy, comedy, philosophy, epic etc.); epigraphy; archaeology.

Outline Of Syllabus

Religion was central to the lives of people in antiquity. It weaves itself through all aspects of ancient history and culture. Some aspects of Greek and Roman religion, like the names of the gods, are superficially familiar and Christianity grew up in dialogue with Greek and Roman religious thought. But many aspects of these ancient religions are alien to modern ways of thinking about the world and our place within it. This makes the study of Greek and Roman religion uniquely rewarding. It can give an unparalleled insight into how ancients conceived of their world, which by extension can allow you to look at antiquity in a new light.

In this course we will look at a wide variety of questions relating to ancient religions including: how humans sought to communicate with their gods; how Greek and Roman religion was organised; what kinds of people worshipped together and under what circumstances; how religions changed and new gods were introduced; the role of different types of religious specialists, from travelling mystics through to civic magistrates; how people thought about the afterlife; the place of religion in war and politics; and the role of religion in the family home.

Learning Outcomes

Intended Knowledge Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this module, you with have developed a sound knowledge of some of the key debates in the study of Greek and Roman Religion and the importance of religious themes for the study of many other aspects of Greek and Roman social and political history.
You will have gained a critical insight into the wide array of different types of evidence needed to reconstruct ancient religions: including a variety of different genres of ancient literature (epic, history, philosophy, tragedy, comedy, etc.); epigraphic evidence; and archaeological evidence.

Intended Skill Outcomes

The module will foster a variety of transferable skills (not all of which will be directly assessed),
including: oral discussion, analytical reading of material objects and set texts, listening and notetaking, written exposition of a logically structured argument employing the appropriate primary and secondary materials, critical self-reflection, and effective time-management.

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture281:0028:00N/A
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion751:0075:0045% of guided independent study
Guided Independent StudyDirected research and reading751:0075:0045% of guided independent study
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching61:006:00Seminars
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesDrop-in/surgery21:002:00Revision sessions
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study141:0014:0010% of guided independent study
Total200:00
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

Lectures will introduce you to key topics and how to approach them. Lectures are not merely intended to provide you with answers. Instead, they will provide you with the knowledge and skills that will enable you to both formulate and answer your own questions. Your listening and note-taking skills will play a key role in this process.

Seminars are an opportunity for you to develop your understanding dynamically, e.g. by engaging in discussion of how you should go about addressing archaeological questions, the relative merits of different types of evidence or approach to the sources or by gaining clarification of any points that you do not understand. In doing so you will develop your analytical skills, oral communication skills and your ability to work as part of a team.

Reading Lists

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Exams
Description Length Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Written Examination1201A60N/A
Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Essay1M402000 words (including footnotes, excluding bibliography)
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

The exam tests acquisition of a clear general knowledge of the subject plus the ability to think and analyse a problem quickly, to select from and to apply both the general knowledge and detailed knowledge of aspects of the subject to new questions, problem-solving skills, and adaptability, the ability to work unaided, and to write clearly and concisely.

Submitted work tests intended knowledge and skills outcomes, develops key skills in research, reading and writing.

All Erasmus students at Newcastle University are expected to do the same assessment as students registered for a degree.

Study-abroad, non-Erasmus exchange and Loyola students spending semester 1 only are required to finish their assessment while in Newcastle. This will take the form of an alternative assessment, as outlined in the formats below:

Modules assessed by Coursework and Exam:
The normal alternative form of assessment for all semester 1 non-EU study abroad students will be one essay in addition to the other coursework assessment (the length of the essay should be adjusted in order to comply with the assessment tariff); to be submitted no later than 12pm Friday of week 12. The essays should be set so as to assure coverage of the course content to date.

Modules assessed by Exam only:
The normal alternative form of assessment for all semester 1 non-EU study abroad students will be two 2,000 word written exercises; to be submitted no later than 12pm Friday of week 12. The essays should be set so as to assure coverage of the course content to date.

Modules assessed by Coursework only:
All semester 1 non-EU study abroad students will be expected to complete the standard assessment for the module; to be submitted no later than 12pm Friday of week 12. The essays should be set so as to assure coverage of the course content to date.

Study-abroad, non-Erasmus exchange and Loyola students spending the whole academic year or semester 2 are required to complete the standard assessment as set out in the MOF under all circumstances.

Timetable

Past Exam Papers

General Notes

N/A

Disclaimer: The information contained within the Module Catalogue relates to the 2020/21 academic year. In accordance with University Terms and Conditions, the University makes all reasonable efforts to deliver the modules as described. Modules may be amended on an annual basis to take account of changing staff expertise, developments in the discipline, the requirements of external bodies and partners, and student feedback. Module information for the 2021/22 entry will be published here in early-April 2021. Queries about information in the Module Catalogue should in the first instance be addressed to your School Office.