Courses Offered through the Basil P. Caloyeras Center
for Modern Greek Studies

 

 

MDGK 101 – ELEMENTARY MODERN GREEK I

A communicative introduction to Modern Greek that emphasizes reading comprehension and oral expression. The course also introduces the fundamentals of grammar and syntax.


MDGK 102 - ELEMENTARY MODERN GREEK II
 
The students continue to review the fundamentals of grammar and syntax, and enhance their oral expression, comprehension and reading skills. By the end of the class students are expected to carry a basic conversation in Modern Greek.


MDGK 203 - INTERMEDIATE MODERN GREEK I
 
The course is designed to review and complete the study of Modern Greek grammar and syntax. A combination of reading and listening comprehension as well as class discussion will improve the students' grasp of the language and enhance their writing and conversational skills.


MDGK 204 - INTERMEDIATE MODERN GREEK II


Students continue to review and complete the study of Modern Greek grammar and syntax. Emphasis is given on reading and listening comprehension as well as developing writing skills. By the end of the class students are expected to carry a more sophisticated level of conversation.



MDGK 321 - ADVANCED MODERN GREEK


Students continue to refine their understanding of all aspects of the language and culture and enhance their vocabulary. Emphasis is now given to reading and listening comprehension as well as speaking skills. Modern Greek literature serves as the basis for discussion and composition (topics vary).



MDGK 325 - ADVANCED MODERN GREEK CONVERSATION


Students refine their understanding of the language in terms of grammar and syntax and significantly expand their vocabulary. Exposure to different contemporary cultural material such as newspapers, films, music and songs, as well as Modern Greek literature serves as the basis for class discussion and composition and familiarizes student with contemporary popular and literary culture. Students completing the course are fluent in both the language and culture of Modern Greece.



MDGK 341: INTRODUCTION TO MODERN GREEK LITERATURE


An introduction to Modern Greek literary history. Through the brief overview of historical circumstances and the close reading of literary texts, the course examines the shift from a predominantly oral culture to that of a rich and prolific written one; a literature that maps historical and political –in the larger sense—concerns, as well as critical and literary ones. The course explores the more traditional questions of how literature has been shaped by history and culture; how classical Greek myths have influenced Modern Greek literary thought; how contemporary writers have built on the experiences of older generations; how gender has been codified and enforced either through stereotypical representations or subversive ones; finally, the course explores and problematizes questions of cultural and gender stereotyping of ethnic identity and language as seen by a rich tradition of literature about and by Greeks in America.



MDGK 342: ANCIENT LANDSCAPES, MODERN VOICES: AN INTRODUCTION TO MODERN GREEK LITERATURE


While visiting the ancient paths of Greece—from Delphi to Epidaurus and Olympia, to the modern metropolis of Athens— the mythical landscapes that most visitors call in on their trip to Greece will come to life and reveal to us their eternal stories in the literary texts we will discuss. In these texts, the students will discover a world still inhabiting the same landscape of Greek myths, yet, a world in search of a modern national and cultural identity separate from ideological constructions of the past. The relationship between myth and history, the reconciliation of conflicting identities, war and foreign occupation, civil strife, politics, urbanization and modernization, the peaceful invasion of tourism, the changing map of Europe and the Balkans will be some of the topics we will explore in our discussions.



MDGK 343/ENGL 341/EURO 398/ WNST 398: ANGELS AND DEMONS: WOMEN AND LITERARY STEREOTYPES FROM THE GREEKS TO THE PRESENT


Women have seen themselves represented in the Western tradition almost exclusively by a male voice. Female literary figures originating in the classical Greek imagination have been stereotypically polarized as either beautiful but deceitful or powerful but deadly. The course will review the origins and cultural significance of such enduring female stereotypes such as the adulteress, the murderess, the woman warrior, and the hysteric. We will then focus on contemporary women writers and the solutions they give when trying to write about women. The original and re-visioned versions will be compared cross-culturally and across time.


MDGK 344/ ENGL 341/EURO 398: CITIES OF THE DEAD: ENGLISH AND MODERN GREEK MODERNISM IN A MYTHIC CONTEXT


Caught between two of the most devastating wars in the history of humankind (WWI and WWII), the Modernist writers witnessed the collapse of human values in their contemporary cultures. From London and Dublin, to Athens and Alexandria in what seems a journey back to myths of origins, the writers discussed seek to find a path of salvation that depends on their ability to reclaim such older myths. T.S. Eliot, James Joyce, William B. Yeats, C.P. Cavafy, George Seferis, Odysseus Elytis, and Nikos Kazantzakis, are some of the writers read in the course.



MDGK 345/ ENGL 341/EURO 398/ WNST 398: COMING OF AGE: STORIES OF GROWTH AND SELF-DISCOVERY


Drawing on the experiences of fictional characters coming of age--both literally and metaphorically--in places as different as post-mythic Greece, the exotic Caribbean, colonial Rhodesia, or urban LA, the course explores the common internal psychological conditions as well as the external social and cultural pressures that influence the construction of one’s identity: “normal” stages of development and the resistance or rush to “grow up,” internalization of projected “ideal” images, family dynamics and relationships, pressures to productive socialization, feelings of alienation and not belonging, the importance of race and gender in finding one’s proper place in society, domestic violence and its consequences will be some of the topics that class discussions will focus on.



MDGK 346/ ENGL 341/EURO 398/ WNST 398: OUT OF CONTROL: WOMEN, MADNESS, AND THE CULTURAL IMAGINATION FROM THE GREEKS TO THE PRESENT


The course aims at a cross-cultural exploration of social, cultural, and literary representations of female “madness” varying from Greek tragedy, to medieval texts, to Victorian literature, to contemporary non-fiction and film. Class discussions will focus on topics such as myths and archetypes of the “mad” woman, goddesses and witches, the connection between artistic creativity and madness, hysteria, female sexuality, as well as personality disorders and body image related issues (such as self-loathing, bulimia and anorexia, cutting, and substance abuse). A historical examination of the social and cultural attitudes and practices towards women will allow students to see how “madness” can often be socially constructed as a way of exercising control.



MDGK 350 - THE GREEK ORTHODOX TRADITION


The course examines the unbroken dogmatic tradition of the Greek Orthodox Church, its liturgy and its place in the religious life of the United States.



MDGK 352 - ORTHODOX CHRISTIAN SPIRITUALITY


This is an introduction to the rich spiritual tradition of Eastern Christianity. The various dimensions of spirituality of the desert fathers and the monastic traditions of the early stages of the Church will be examined. Principles of spiritual direction in the present day world will be reviewed and placed in the proper historical background.



MDGK 398 - NEW TESTAMENT GREEK

The course introduces the student to the reading of New Testament Greek; helps the student comprehend the fundamentals of grammar and syntax and acquire sufficient vocabulary to be able to read and understand the New Testament and follow discussions in commentaries of the Bible.



MDGK 450 - MODERN GREEK HISTORY AND SOCIETY


The History of Greece in the 19th and 20th centuries and its place in Europe and the Balkans. An examination of the crises and challenges that have shaped Modern Greek society and the culture and literature it produced.