The Iliad


W101

Wednesdays

10:30am – 12:00pm

Berkshire Community College

Room F203

Pittsfield

4/17, 4/24, 5/1, 5/8,

5/15, 5/22

Six Sessions

“Every notion of progress is refuted by the existence of the Iliad.” So said Italian writer

Roberto Calasso of the epic that stands at the dawn of Western civilization. The Trojan

War became the archetype for all wars, and the Iliad, a story of love, rage, grief, and a

lovely city on the verge of destruction, is a tragedy as familiar today as it was twenty-seven

centuries ago. This is the first of a triad of courses devoted to the three great epics of the

ancient world, the Odyssey to follow immediately in the June semester, and the Aeneid

the following fall.

Class #1: Introduction: How to read the Iliad

Class #2: Iliad Books 1-5

Class #3: Iliad Books 6-10

Class #4: Iliad Books 11-15

Class #5: Iliad Books 16-20

Class #6: Iliad Books 21-24

Suggested Reading: The Robert Fagles translation of the Iliad (Viking/Penguin, 1990) will be used by the instructor in class, but feel free to read any modern translation you like.


Richard Matturro
, a native of Rye, New York, holds a doctorate in English with a specialization in Shakespeare and Greek Mythology. After sixteen years at the Albany Times Union, he taught literature at UAlbany for fourteen years. He is the author of numerous newspaper articles and six published novels.


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