Thursday, August 23, 2012

Real to reel: Course explores ancient Greece and Rome in the movies

Was “Spartacus” an anti-fascist polemic? Does “Agora” demonstrate the horrors of anti-science religious zealotry? Did the Trojans really dress only in blue-and-white outfits? Quiz: Sophia Loren and Elizabeth Taylor in un-credited roles, plus 32,000 costumes.

The answers are yes, yes, no and “Quo Vadis.”

Since 1914, more than 600 movies have been set in ancient Greece or Rome, or in some way employ their history and literature. These movies offer varying degrees of historical accuracy and often mirror contemporary fears and concerns.

A sampling of antiquity-themed films will be examined in depth in the course “The Ancient World in the Movies” to be taught at University of Buffalo this fall by UB classicist Donald McGuire.

Students will watch 13 excellent films, attend two lectures a week and read critical material in a quest to understand why we keep looking at the past, where the populist version of the ancient life comes from and how such movies have reflected and represented present day issues.

Click here to read this article from the University of Buffalo Reporter

Click here find more information about the course from the University of Buffalo