Saturday, May 2, 2009

Final Test

  • Death is the mother of beauty
  • last thanksgiving airpaling engine failure
  • go hojme and see mother
  • best thing is cookies and sunsets

Test Questions

1. What does lucius have to eat? Roses

2. Lucius attributes everything that happens to him, good or bad, to what? Fortune

3. What is Psyche told not to do ? Look in the box, or look at her husband

4. What is the image of Psyche, and draw it? Butterfly

5. What did Psyche convince her sisters to do? Jump off the cliff and they thought they would be caught by Cupid

6. What does Lucius say when trying to sy he didn't rob milo? NON

7. What is Lucius trying to become when he is turned into an ass? an Owl

8. The Truman Show is an example of what literary form? Frame Story

9. Lucius beacome the high priest of which religious myster? Isis

Livingston Enterprise: Kenya sex strick

Sam's Blog

  • absolute true story of a part time indian
  • sherman Alexie
  • can't stop laughing even though everyone is dying around him
  • give him story of medea

Zac's blog

  • wishes the rest of the world to be like the class
  • excited fr class
  • life is not a problem, it is a mystery, to be experienced not saved
  • power of love
  • "everybody loves everybody:
  • class in it together

April 29 Class Notes

Group 5
  • Reinactment of kidnapping of Persephone, with modern language
  • Zeus and Hades, compare women
  • Demeter is distraught
  • burn the baby
  • Elucinian mysteries (with canned corn)

Group 6

  • Whose myth is it anyways
  • dating game (lysistrata, Antigone, and Ovid Characters)
  • Party
  • Zac volunteers
  • Sam turns into a Valasa Raptor
  • Beer pong
  • Symposium
  • Buddah Irish drinking song

Wednesday, April 29, 2009


Finally the semester has drawn to a close, and of all the classes I am most sad to see this one end. It seems as though it has been a long time since my imagination has been so engaged in a class, making me excited to go to class every Monday, Wednesday and Friday. The tales which we encountered were tales that I was familiar with, however, the way in which they were presented had me mulling them over long after the class that day was finished. Since taking this class I have begun to notice the world around me much more, I look at the things I love and try to love them with the intensity and simplicity of A Rock, A Tree, A Cloud. Each situation I encounter has me analyzing it for what I can learn from it, asking Why is this so familiar to me? Have I seen this before? All of this goes back to All that is Past Possesses the Present. One of my favorite pass times since hearing this phrase has been trying to convince my friends that this is true. Seeing the enlightenment on their face is a joy to me, once we establish that then we are able to move on to what we can learn from this, and hopfully solve all of the worlds problems. In addition NEVER have I encountered such an enthusiastic class and teacher. The combination of the both of them, drives me to do better, and be better within the scope of the class. I also want to experience everything that we read about (to an extent). I want to love like Cupid and Psyche, I want to play tricks like Hermes, Have the parental love of Demeter and Persephone, Cherish children as the Trojan women did, and love my country like Iphogenia. All of these things are so exciting, and I hope that I can experience them to some extent, even if it is for only a short time through the books we have read.
Basically. I would like to thank Dr. Sexton for sharing his enthusiasm for the Classical Literature with me, It has given me a greater outlook on life, and perhaps opened my eyes a little bit. I would also like to thank the class for sharing their many talents, it was an amazing experience to see everyones talents displayed in a vast array. So once again thank you, for the most enjoyable class of the semesnter.


It is amazing that even though everything that is past possesses the present we still manage to use our imaginations to entertain. Everyone who has presented in the last few days have shown their imagination in facinating ways, everything from drinking, and amazing art to game shows and Antigone remaid with dogs. Truly this class has some amazing talent, and perhaps this is not as strange as it first seems. Since all that is past is a part of us, then perhaps we have just been conditioned for too many years for us to not be imaginative. Each piece is exciting and entertaining on so many different levels. It astounds me that there have been no over laps in the tales. Sure each group has taken something from the different texts and used them, however the way in which they are used is truly exciting to me. Perhaps within the realms of this class we may have the next Ovid, or Socrates, who knows, but after seeing these presentations and hearing these papers I would not be surprised. The entire class has illustrated their power to imagine and entertain hopfully we will see more of this in years to come.

April 27 Class Notes

Group 3
  • feast of dionices
  • volunteers
  • Women dancers and Men posing
  • Sparagmos Dance
  • Modern Antigone w/ dogs
  • Mark and the tiolet is a comedy
  • Casting director and producer= Erysicthon
  • Man eating himself

Group 4

  • Spoof on Midas story
  • present day (donald trump)
  • The Golden Fool
  • Jesus changes donald
  • ultimately ends up bald
  • use mass texting
  • very funny!

April 24 Class Notes

Requirements : Read
Brian's blog
Rio's (Audio)

  • no comments on papers, lengthy ones via email
  • blog
  • 2 tests
  • presentation score
  • term papaer
  • add final grade

Group 1:

  • Symposium
  • Rio is liberated, filter over your eyes, all you need is love
  • Christina= art is love ist is constant and feeds inspiration
  • in love life
  • not a prisoner of live itr is freedome
  • Vernice
  • love is unscientigic love is sickness of mind
  • it is not a disease
  • Kahla
  • only one love
  • love is an act of will it is a choice
  • learn love i nour childhood
  • Ann
  • love is violent
  • love is confusiong it is a prey
  • disquised as lust
  • unexpected/no right or wrong
  • Jillian
  • all the facets of love
  • sex ed., lovers, power plays
  • living alone when you are naked
  • Luke
  • love IS
  • always strong
  • Romantic love
  • draws everyone
  • stunning and surprising
  • we love love
  • from all the moments, kisses, holding, scared to meet parents
  • love never ends

Group 2

  • Everything else Conflicts Homeric hymns Ovid
  • games show,
  • charades and pictionary

Monday, April 27, 2009

April 22 Class Notes

  • violence in the media
  • violence worse today=not true
  • ovid refutes that
  • media=control, and it is cathartic


  • echo
  • oen of the most powerful characters
  • self made immortality
  • she is tangible


  • the 4 ages
  • felt they are too harsh
  • not absolite there is still beauty


  • wrote a story
  • bull finches mythology
  • Pyramus and thisbe


  • Response to his own father
  • metamorphosis through the class
  • family death
  • catharsis reading/writing


  • tragedy in his life
  • metamophosis in the class to now
  • how he changed for the better
  • end of ovid's exhile
  • death is the mother of beauty
  • people are beautiful because they die


  • Erysicthon
  • everyone is greedy
  • compared it to america
  • relation to modern life


  • comparing Metamorphosis (Kafka) to Golden Ass
  • the different stages of their changes


  • classical literature is phallocentic and it down plays the women
  • Creon/Antigone
  • Rape of the women Zeus vs. Trojan Women
  • women as objects


  • Pathagrus
  • metempsychosis/ vegitarianism
  • Callisto and Penthius


  • magic
  • the idea of innocece in imagination
  • child belife we lose as we get older
  • turn into a butterfly/loss of magic
  • wish we could be adults with youthful innocnece


  • Popculture and our stories
  • rocky horror picture show/ pygmalion
  • human condition


  • symposium
  • transformation story of her theory on love
  • daughter of aphrodite and the daughter was lost
  • raised by humans and becomes a song
  • concerts and songs feeling of complete joy


  • Power of Eyes
  • indiana jones and cupid and psyche
  • pwoer to steal the soul


  • idea of love and what socrates learned
  • love is a spirit that brings 2 people together


  • Metemporphosis and how it applies to our lives
  • ted hughes= instantanious
  • our lives= catapillars which is just as extreme
  • teenage girl
  • seeing poverty

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

April 20 Class Notes

  • what i learned in this class
  • greek literature affects all forms of literature
  • Spirited away= parents turned into pigs,
  • must not look back = Orpheus


  • Absolute man- pursuit of transformation
  • obids transformation throughout the book
  • remaking ourselves


  • Boastfulness of Niobe and how we see that in ourselves


  • Anamnesis
  • love as a feeling when we remember
  • retold story of his mother's lullaby
  • being able to remember that s/ her and understanding their relationship
  • connection with mother through anamnesis


  • shadow country
  • rerenderinf of mythology
  • the conflicts


  • the death of children
  • woman in her community who killed her own children
  • love of a child is a horrible thing to lose
  • Read MEDEA


  • Cupid and Psyche
  • today''s version also, a frame narrative


  • tragedy- trojan women
  • why do we suffer and modern tragedy
  • realization within boyfriend, " I know how you feel"
  • so you know you are not alone in your suffering


  • love leading to immortality
  • beauty leads the divine
  • recognizing the completion in ourselves
  • everyone experiences soe love but each is unique


  • love
  • how love and dath share a close bond
  • cant have one with out the other
  • hades loved Persephone very much, and let her leave
  • even death needs to be loved
  • love must be kept together = Haemon and Antigone
  • "death is the mother of beauty" Wallace Stevens from poem Sunday morning


  • Callisto and the girl with the Pearl Earing
  • callisto is everywhere
  • sea, cowboys, time, indians

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Nobody like Mom

When reading Cupid and Psyche it is quite funny to me to think about Cupid running home to mother, because she can make everything better. Not much has changed, parents still dote upon their children and my family is no exception my father's mother is the sweetest, quirkiest, craziest lady that I know. But because of this she is loves her children and loves to tell her grandchildren what fabulous children our parents were.
Once my siblings and I were watching t.v. and an ad for some Micheal Jordan memorabelia came on and we began talking about how difficult it would be to be his kid, my dad chose that moment to jump in saying that must be what it was like for us. He was quite surprised when we agreed with him...but not for the reasons he was thinking of :). Our grandmother in every single conversation I have ever had with her, has mentioned how wonderful my father is "you know when your father was in high school he worked so har" and when I left for college "your dad came home and worked on the ranch for a semester to help us all out" when I got a new car "we bought your father a car, but he gave it back because he wanted to pay for it on his own" when my friends get in trouble for drinking "your dad never drank in high school, he just played poker" my grandma may seem naive in some senses but for all of it she loves her children with a passion that is incomparable. My father in turn is much the same "you know Julie (my mother) mom made a great meal for lunch, she does such a great job, shes such a great cook" all while we are eating my mom's cooking. They have a strange relationship....anyways.....
So while I was reading Cupid and Psyche and this kept replaying through my head. Mothers and Sons have a very strong relationship and seem unable to see each others flaws and are willing to do anything for one another, this is so similar to my dad and grandmother, it makes me smile, because I can relate so well. It makes sense that ancient writers would chose these parental relationships to write about, because to be honest not alot changes from year to year, especially familial ones. If nothing else this gives me hope, for my relationship with my children in the future

April 17 Class Notes


  • Originality/ Pinoccio
  • wanting to become a real boy becomes an ass- fulfill task is then a real boy
  • reminded of what we forget


  • Transmigration
  • why there are family resemblances
  • any imaginary life pg 64
  • transformation of our soul in to betterment


  • also transmigration but in conversation form
  • how you look @ life
  • losing friends and gaining new ones at cllege
  • easier to welcome change with open arms
  • everything returns to laughter


  • Laughter
  • used sotry of Ramahan?
  • god, human folly and Laughter
  • Begin with laughter and end with laughter (tragedy and comedy)


  • nothing is as it seems
  • circumstances shouldn't be taken for granted just because they are not original

Zach Smith

  • What I learned
  • emotions connect to us
  • need deeper level connections
  • correcting past and present through emotions


  • one god 2 names
  • Zeus and Jupiter
  • suit what they wanted out of their people
  • Greek art and Roman Warriors


  • Movies and Literature
  • Legends of the fall- Hermes- brother's feud
  • Gran Tarino- Antigone- The Conflicts
  • dances with Wolves- An Imaginary life


  • Hitch hiking boy, runs away from problems and learns life lessons from a man along the way who says you cannot get rid of anything without thinking about it
  • explores all is suffering all is fleeting,
  • make peace and accept life and what it is


  • Love and Lust and the combinations
  • Child love = innocent
  • Lust can complicate
  • searach for the balance of the two


  • An Imaginary Life= festival of Dionisis
  • waking up in the imaginary life and being a part of the festival
  • anamenesis


  • Past possesses the present
  • applies to evberything in our lives
  • chorus old and new
  • it is like babe
  • the guys at the coffee shop


  • what would have happened if the child had really been a wolf
  • difference between knowing and KNOWING
  • we know the difference
  • if we forget everything every time then we must do everything over through history
  • kind of anamnesis

April 15 Class Notes

Shadow Country: 900 pgs....but definitely a good read

The Golden Ass

Exemplary Romance/Wonder Text
  • outrageous adventures
  • discovery
  • buffetted by fortune
    form basis of outrageous literature/comedy that you will continue to encounter


  • Hero's journey, only it is a woman
  • impossible tasks must be completed before the happy ending
  • like Beauty and The Beast
  • at heart the beast is kindly
  • story of innitiation, that of Psyche to Mount Olypus
  • Psyche moves from Bimbo to Divination
  • Sister's demand that she sees her "ugly" husband
  • she sees he is beautiiful and accosts him and wax falls on him
  • she is pregnant

Till We Have Faces by C.S. Lewis

  • cult following
  • version of Cupid and Psyche



pricks her finger on his arrow and "so the soul falls in love with love"

  • she holds onto his legs and he kicks her away
  • Psychic development of the feminine
  • trys to kill herself but instead she washes ashore
  • tells a lie...this shows the powers of invention, saying that her husband wants to marry Psyche's sisterand she must jump off the cliff to win him, instead the sister dies

Ch. 9

  • boyfriend comes in and kills the robbers
  • Venus says for capturing Psyche she will reward the finder with seven kisses and one french kiss
  • Once Psyche is caught, she must perform impossible tasks, however the beasts help her to solve her problems, as well as several other animals
  • the ultimate thing that Psyche must do is ask Prosperpina for her makeup and she must go to the underworld for this
  • she must not open the box, but she does and falls into a deep sleep
  • Cupid saves her and she becomes immmortal

Ch. 10

  • frame narrative
  • not a happy ending,
  • she kills herself


  • elaborate pantimime of judgement of Paris
  • much like the mask in the Tempest by Shakespeare
  • Lucius runs away from the circus


  • jumps up to purify himself in the water seven times
  • prays to queen of heaven to make him a man again (Isis)


  • epiphany - sudden manifestation of the divine into the ordinary world


  • true name is Isis= universal mother
  • wants him to vome to high priest (initiation) take the crown of roses and eat them he will then be turned back
  • look @ deborah's blog


  • he is transformed
  • becomes a priest of Isis


  • Lucius talks to audience
  • in the end it is happy but we must be initiated...we must eat the roses

Friday, April 17, 2009


Elizabeth Riley
English 213
Michael Sexton
April 17, 2009
The Emotions of Love and Lust

Our emotions are volatile things, changing on us constantly, and messing with our everyday lives, and none seem to mess with us more than the emotions of love and lust. The two at times may seem quite connected, keeping one physically attracted to their emotional equal; while at others the combination of the two will do more harm than good. Emotions such as these make our lives more interesting, perhaps because even after thousands of years we still understand very little about them.
Our first encounters with love come at a very young age, we are sweet and innocent and we begin to love the world around us. We love the simple things in life, that which does not need a larger purpose other than to be our tree house. This is the point in our lives where we expect nothing in return for our love and we have begun by loving right; here we love the rock, the tree, the cloud. Love such as this been sought after by others who want to regain the innocence of the love they once had, one that is not tainted by the prejudices and preconceived notions accumulated over a lifetime.
Children are the purest of all living beings, and with their innocence and the boundless love felt towards them the loss of a child hurts on a much deeper level. The loss of a child is the worst thing that can happen because love is involved, not just that of the parents but the loves of the child as well. When the love the child feels for the world around them is lost, a sense of emptiness is left, with nothing to fill its void because there is no way of regaining that love, no way of turning back the clock and no way of replacing the love that they gifted the world with; once it is gone it is lost forever.
When we are older love and lust are allowed their first opportunity to mingle. It is almost like the emotion of lust is allowed to enter our body through all of the hormones we feel at this time in our lives. This is the time when lust is so overwhelming it takes over any tender feelings that love might have had in our heart before this point. We become driven to fulfill our thoughts and the actions that follow and these are not something we are proud of , in fact more often than not are embarrassing beyond belief.
Usually our first attempts at fulfilling our feelings go quite horribly, resulting in red faces and bruised egos. Some will go so far as to try and view the object of their lust nude, and inevitably there will be consequences, Actaeon was turned into a stag and ripped to shreds for daring to lust after Diana after he saw her bathing naked. Fortunately for most people this will not happen to them, although it is quite likely that parents will not be happy with the situation, most especially the fathers.
Later as we are more able to deal with lust and love at the same time, we are still inevitably drawn towards lust. In everyday situations our physical needs over power the emotional draw we may feel towards another. Often this results in trying to pressure our significant other in to sexual relationships that they are not ready for, resulting in the severing of this relationship and is inevitably followed by remorse; by being overwhelmed by lust, the chance at happily ever after is ruined. Lust also makes us very easy to manipulate. If we are as smart as Lysistrata we use the lust that others feel towards us and con them into giving us more power. In more modern situations we will go to great lengths to make the object of our attention happy in the hopes of sexual gratification.
When love and lust are together there are times when things seem contradictory. The love one feels for another may overpower the lust factor, leaving the relationship feeling entirely too bland, while at other times the lack of love in a relationship can make one feel empty inside. Perhaps too much lust will leave one in a relationship much like that of Myrrhine, where the husband neglects the child because he has not been sexually satisfied for so long. On the opposite end, a lack of lustful thoughts may leave one feeling unwanted and less than desirable, which is never a good thing in a relationship.
There are times when love and lust are perfectly balanced, or at least co-exist on some level. This may sometimes mean that the existence of these emotions together create a sense of harmony within us. Light fills our days, and heat fills our nights in short, there is nothing wrong with this picture. Our soul finds its counterpoint and we are in a perfect love as that of Psyche and Cupid. Experiences during this time are unlike that of any other in our lifetime, and we hold them more precious and dear that anything else.
Love and Lust are inevitable emotions, and a huge part of who we are as human beings. Our need for each of them is fundamental, and reveling in them is not a bad thing. They play with our other emotions and allow us to get into trouble and try and talk our way out of it. If we were void of these emotions we would be left with a meaningless existence. Without love and lust we lose two of the most flavorful spices of life, which keep us striving to reach that one point of completion, where lust and love meet in the perfect union that has the ability to make us giddy and care free in ways that no other emotions have the ability to; they intimately connect us to another human being. This completion of our bodies and our souls makes all of the pain, and embarrassment along the way well worth the trouble.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

April 13 Class Notes

2-3 min presentations
example (an enjoyable one)
read a sentence from your piece

on friday

Golden ass pg numbers of interest
  • 18
  • 25
  • 2860
  • 71
  • 93
  • 117
  • 120
  • 127
  • 131
  • 132
  • 139
  • 143

A young woman is abducted by robbers , and an old woman tells her the best way out of this is through story. so she tells her of Cupid and Psyche

18- Outrageous happenings that are hard to beleive even though you are there

"Gimple the Fool" also stretches the bounds of credibility

25- what you see is not really what it seems

28- Acteon seeing Diane bathing

59-60- character who is not bright in an odd situation/ n elaborate hoaz for the benefit of the protaganist

ex: the truman show, or Anger Management

71- His transformation

  • rub ointment but the wrong kind is put on him and then he was abducted by bandits
  • only way to change back is to eat roses
  • look at Deborah's for meaning of the goldene ass and the religious take on it

Once Upon a time...transportus us back into a place that cannot be exactly pin ounted

  • beauty and the beast- cupid and psyche
  • phylosophical allegory between the soul and its relationship to love
  • psyche means mind now but was originally used for SOUL
    always a butterfly
  • cupid is a trickster
  • psyches accepts death like Iphogenia, even though Psyche is saved
  • the best love is to be in love with love!

April 8 Class Notes

Dickenson= plots of romanc

boy girl grow up together and are separated and in the end are reunited
also in greek literature
Arabian Nights
If i could have married anyone....Little Red Riding Hood

What I know now, that i did not know then and the difference it has made
if you cant find another topic for your paper use this one

Blog over weekend
continuous blogging as reading
Ch. 4 Cupid and Psyche look for illustrations

Fransis the Talking mule which became Mr. Ed which was similar to a Midsummer's night dream which is from the Golden Ass

Sunday, April 12, 2009


Of all the deadly sins, it has been said that pride is the worst, and perhaps this is true. I, however, would counter that by saying Jealousy is most detrimental to those around you. Jealousy is not so easily recognized, and may be shown in other forms such as anger, as well as deception. Those who are jealous of another, may easily hide what they are feeling because it can be shown in the form of another emotion. Consequently the person that the envy is directed at may have no idea when disaster may strike or when they may be sabotoged, most especially when it is a family member. Cupid does not realize he is being manipulated by his mother and Psyche does not realize she is being manipulated by her jealous sisters. Consequently disaster strikes. If this baser emotion had been contained perhaps the pair could have continued on in bliss. I think it is true that one is content until a seed of doubt is planted. In this instance the seed was planted out of jealousy, not out of love, or the need and caring one should actually have for one's sister. Instead by being purely self motivated the lovers were broken up. It would have made a great twist at the end if Cupid had refused to shoot them with his bow and arrows and consequently they would never find the love that they took away from their sister.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Exam #2 Notes

Know all of Ovid, including intro (he has a certain skepticism in his work)

Allen mendlebalm has a better opening line:
I shall have life
this is true because we can immortalize ourselves through books and writing


1. what is flighting?
bantering, especially in Lysistrata between the 2 choruses, with deragatory comments
2. What is a tally?
a broken piece of a coin, which in the symposium was explained by Aristophanies when we were one

3. Echo.....just know it all

4. What two characters are models of Romeo and Juliet?
Pyramus and Thisbe
5. Name three of the seven speakers and be able to say what they talked about...
Phaedrus=love and sacrifice
Pausanias= heavenly love vs. common love
Eryximachus= love harmonizes us
Aristophanes= we are a tally, we were once whole and have now been broken, and look for the one to complete us
Agathon= love is beautiful and perfect
Socrates= love can't be beautiful and perfict, desire, one cannot desire something if they alreayd have it, love is wanting, love means not having the thing you need, it is an intermediate stage, love is loooking for that which he does not have (he heard this from Diotima
Diotima( kind of )= love is a great spirit between god and mortal, immortality of thehuman soul
Alcibiades= praises socraties, he hates him because he loves him so much.

6. Tragedy means_________ and comedyd means___________.
goat song; song of the Revel

7. What is metempsychosis?
transmigration of souls
8. what is catharsis?
purging of the feeligns of pity and fear....tragedy
9. what is the worst thing that can happen to you (according to the Trojan Women?)
Sacrificing a Child
10. What does obscene mean?
off stage
11. difference between old comedy and new comedy.
old comedy deals with flighting, and the continueing banter, while new comedy deals with boys and girls and obstacles between them

12. Plato's theory that we already know everything we just forgot it all?
13. Which goddess offerred Helen to Paris? (what did Paris chose as a gift from the Goddesses?)
Aphrodite Helen
14. Dr. Sexton says to think of reincarnation as?
poetic thought or a metaphore

15. What character does Aristophanes use for reconciliation in Lysistrata?
a naked girl

16. Difference between Sophoclian and Euripidan tragedy?
sophoclean is formal while euripidian is emotional

17. tragedy is associated with what? comedy?
tragedy is individual while comedy is community

18. why do we laugh?
to keep from crying

19. in what story does a bear become a constellation?
20. what is paraasis?
abusing of the audience, a part of comedy, make fun of the audience

21. woman as spoil of war become what 2 things?
concubines and slaves

22. what is PHallocenticism?
the domination of a culture by the male point of view or the phallic point of view
23. Aristotle believed the perfect literature was...
24. According to Plato what happens when you see something beautiful?
your shoulder blades itch because we want to get back to when we were perfect and had wings
25. What is nostos?
26. what is Niobe turned into?
a weeping stone
27. List of characters/ transformations ( i have a larger list in an earlier blog)
actaeon- stag
Narcissus- narcissus flower
Atalanta- lion
Pentheus- boar
4 ages- gold to silver to bronze to iron, each progressively worsens
Adonis- wind flower (red spot from being sliced in the groin by the boar)
Arachnie- spider
Myrrha- tree (pregnant w/ adonis)
Tyresisu- man to woman to man
Mida - ass's ears

28. When i god privides something it cannot be taken away however it can be added on to.

29. Lysistrata Text:
essay's Greek Comedy and Athenian Women.....

Thursday, April 2, 2009


Acteon was the foolish young man who was hunting in the woods, and came upon Diane bathing, instead of turning away (like any smart man would) he continues to stare at her until she splashes water on him, and turns him into a stag, which his dogs then rip to shreds. I found several interesting works of art that depicted this momentous scene in Actaeon's life.

I begin to wonder at the power of a single moment. In that one moment Actaeon had to power to save himself, to make sure he made it out of this situation alive, however by following his own rational, his baser instincts he was ultimately lead to his death. Would that he had but looked away, he might have been saved. The power of that single moment, that one decision, changed his life forever, and essentially ended it. Are our lives defined by a single moment? can a single decision make or break us, decide whether we live or die. mayhap it is not for us to truley know may be we are just meant to live and have a single glance back, a realization of sorts, of "what might have been" It seems odd, that we would be left to our own devises, for it is a fact that humans are faulty and often make mistakes of momentous proportions. Maybe that is what we use religion for, to keep us with a sense of direction. For Actaeon his religion was ultimately his death, for he did not pay respect to it as he should have and consequently died. Maybe this is a warning to all of us, follow and honor your beliefs or you shall be torn to shreds by your dogs.


What kind of stress the characters in these books were under? do we take for granted the fact that everything has a chronologicallity to it, and even if the outcome is horrible the characters still never seem to stress about how things will turn out. either it will be a tragedy or a comedy, there will be no in between. Am I missing something or are there not "stressedies" those which are filled with stress throughout the entire text. By this I mean the constant worry of what will come not the realization that things are horrible, or horribly funny. While it does seem that the characters often worry, about their country, or that no one understands them it still seems odd that there are very few that exhibit these traits. Perhaps the characters do not have enough time to worry because their lives are too exciting and action filled for them to experience something as trivial as simply stressing about what the next course of action is. Never once does Iphogenia stress about how her life is coming to an end, or Lucius stress about turning back into a man. There never seems to be anything mundane in these texts, which is wonderful for the reader, but still leaves the characters seemingly less human for their lack of the quality that is found in each and everyone of matter how much we would like to deny it. Our innate ability to worry about even the slightest thing such as clothing still makes us human, maybe mundane, but human none the less. Are we missing something from stressing too much or are the characters left in our dust because they are with fewer faults than we? maybe it is a question that will be answered or at some level divined by the end of this class.

April 1 Class Notes

Go and watch Peter Matheson April 23 @ 7:30 Emerson Cultural Center Attend evening reading of Shadow country.

Mandatory attendance this Friday

Test #2 on 6th, w/ Relevant Questions on Friday

8th Correct test and start Golden Ass

17th start indidvidual presentations,
2-3 min on term paper
need a print version (formal) 4-5 pgs,
outside sources need MLA formatting
Also post on blog
15 people a day present Alphabetically from Z-A

Use Ovidain story line or type for summary in class

24th =groups 1and 2
27th= groups 3and 4
29th = groups 5 and 6
conclusion the 31st

tues the 5th is the final exam

metempsychosis- phylosiphy of the transfer or continuation of the soul, similar to reincarnation
works with the thoughts of vegetarianism because one did not want to soul they were eating to be passed on to them:

All things Change, nothing dies

The truthes of buddah: follow the pathe governemed by right, including thinking and living

Plato's phylosephy @ the end of The Republic
lowest thing to return to is a teacher

For Ovid there is no death

Ignorance is not bliss it is oblivion
though knowledge may not make you happier, you will feel more complete in the process

Read Shoni's blog Pg 64: we have only to conceive it to transform
Pg 96: " Slowly i begin the final metamorphosis I must drive out my old self and let in the universe in which everything is"

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

March 27/29 Class Notes

Next Exam:

Tiresias-man to woman to man
Atalanta- lion
Myrrha- tree
phaeton's sisters- poplar trees
Niobe- weeping stone
Pyramus and Thisbe- Red mulberries
Venus and Adonis- wind flower
Lycaon- wolf
Arethusa- stream
Cygnus- swan
Erysicthon- daughter= power to change in to anything
Hercules and Deianira - Constellation/ Nessus- poison shirt
Peleus- Thetus -shape shifter
Salamacis and Hermaphrodi - one body
Prosperpina- cyane - water and owl
Echo and Narcisus- echo and narsissus flower
Midas- ass's ears
clalystos Archus- the bears, ursa major and ursa minor
Semele- explosion
Pygmalion- perfect woman
Lychus- Rock
Birth od Hercuels-= midwife into a weasle
4 ages: gold to silver to brass to iron, each is progressively worse
Lycian peasants = frogs

Friday we will use to study

  • The symposium
  • Lysistrata
  • iphogenia @ Aulis
  • Trojan Women
  • Ovid's Metamorphosis
  • An Imaginary Life

Make questions that get to the heart and are not fecisious for friday

Christina's blog

  • an imaginary life
  • water carriers of Savile

Being to read blogs of all fellow students especially An Imaginary Life, look for visual examples of stories from ovid

What is it that makes these stories so facinating

Sunday, March 29, 2009

the power of a story

It has occured to me as we listen to many students in our class tell stories from Ovid. While the tales themselves are quite entertaining, I find it even more facinating that an individual is telling it, and it is a true STORY, in the sense that we listen to it for entertainment, and the class part of it is set away from our mind for a brief period of time. There have been numerous studies(heres where i found some information) showing the power of story telling in school, as well as learning, basically it shows that students retain better because they can at times relate better to emotions and some situations than if they had just read it out of a text book. Now obviously this is meant for younger kids, but I still think it has relevance for us. Who is not captivated by a good story, whether it starts out "man, i was so wasted last night" or "so there was this guy" to us they are just as captivating as "Once upon a time." When we hear a tale that begins this way, it is almost as though it sucks us in, and we begin to memorize every detail with the hopes that we can entertain someone else in much the same way we were. A driving force for many people is the ability to make another laugh, (especially when it is not directed at you but at your story). I believe there has to be an endorphine release that runs through our body and makes everything feel better. Story telling was also passed down for many many many generations, it is so ingrained in us, is it not a wonder why we learn better when things are placed in a story setting? Stories facinate us and they allow us to share much of ourselves in the process. Without a story to tell I believe we would be empty people, because without a tale to tell,( for one we wouldnt be english majors) and we would not be living life to its full potential, by learning from stories, sharing them, and helping others with them along the way.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

And then one day....

Once there was a young girl, smart, independent etc, etc. She lived her life just by the books, always perfect, with the right clothes the right schooling, the perfect grades, and of course the perfect boyfriend. Everything was perfect....or so it seemed. And then one day she was sitting by the pond (on a blanket of course, one wouldnt want to get dirty) reading, when her very handsome boyfriend came up. He really was quite stunning she thought to herself. He was tall, and mild mannered, with the breathtaking smile designed to make your heart melt, however today all she could think about was how imperfect being perfect was. As he sat down beside her she decided it was the time for some questioning. "Why are we together?" she asked him...."uhh why do you ask?", the girl can do nothing but roll her eyes "forget about it" later that evening she made a decision....what was the point in being perfect? she asked herself, When people are truly meant to be imperfect shouldn't those screw ups and pitfalls be enjoyed. The mess ups are the spice of life.
In the dead of night she packed up her things and took off, hey if she was going to be imperfect, she figured she might as well start off with a bang! the road was long and trying, many a bad hair day followed, along with a rainy day, and one or two missing garments. She had been traveling for some time when she came upon a small town, it had rained the day before, and she was not looking her best. her hair was a mess, and her clothes slightly misshapen. As she neared the town she saw a young man who was being beat up by a much larger oaf of a man. The girl was outraged, she had never seen such a thing,(because perfect people never fight) she saw a large branch lying nearby. she picked it up and crept be hind the oaf who had the young man pinned up against a wall. The young man's surprise showed when she hit the oaf in the back of the head..knocking him uncouncious.
The young man was so releaved, but slightly embarrassed as well. He stared at her for a few minutes, and then ran back to his village. At this the girl became quite upset, she had just done something quite extraordinary and he did not even appreciate her hard work. The girl was so furious that when she got to town, she searched out that same young man. This man, who happened to be about the same age was working in the local library. She began to yell at him, telling him how ungrateful he was. This went on for some time until the young man finally placed a hand over her mouth, and held up a piece of paper. The paper stated that the young man was mute, and partially deaf, which is why the oaf and caught him in the first place and noone had come to his rescue. The girl was contrite, but began laughing at the same time. In the process of being imperfect she had made a mistake that made her look like an idiot. At the bottom was a note for asking if the girl would marry him. Taking out her pen she politely replied no, because it is much better to have friends in strange places rather than romantic attachments. And so the young man and young woman aged with little grace and many mistakes, but happy none the less.

how does this relate to class? The girl was transformed, of her own concious doing, this particular choice, just happened to make her happier. It is true that through out ever one of the pieces of literature that we have read, the characters were allowed decisions, just as this young girl was. Also the mistakes made by each character apply to this little tale as well. Each person just wants to be happy, and mistakes and decisions help lead us to that particular point.

March 25 Class Notes

On monday have your thesis statement ready for what you are going to write your essay on.

  • end of an era
  • influenced more people, especially artists, than any other author
  • most pictorial of all authors
  • interested in eathing disorders (kind of like Oprah)
  • look at deborah's blog for ovid's exhile
  • most famous author in augustan rome, had many erotic works

And then one day...

  • in year 8 emperor augustis banished ovid for political reasons, claiming his crimes were worse than muder
  • david malouf wondered what it was like to be cast to the end of the earth
  • ovid was cast to Tomis by the black sea

An imaginary life

The Beast within Us
David Malouf’s An Imaginary Life is an extraordinary piece exploring the fictional life of a not so fictional poet, Publius Ovidius Naso, or Ovid. This tale takes place while he is exiled from the Roman Empire, to a place where no one speaks his language, and the people there seem exceedingly primitive. His world seems quite desolate, until he learns of the “Wild Child” living in the woods nearby. This child, this idea of a human raised by wild animals, seemed little more than myth to Ovid, and consequently he is captivated by it. Though this is a fictional tale, and a modern one at that, it has much to do with the Classical Literature class.
First of all are we all not captivated by the myths we hear in class? We become fascinated by them turning them over in our minds, contemplating their relativity to our everyday experiences. Ovid was consumed by this idea of a “Wild Child” and he wanted to know everything about this creature that was on the same playing level as a myth come to life for him. He worked and thought about the Child, and eventually brought him back to the village where he began to teach him how to speak, and the ways of humans. Are we not much the same? If we find something that is out of the ordinary, something of myth, would we not try to take it home with us, in our own mind maybe trying to make a better life for that same creature? The theme of our class is “all that is past possesses the present”, to me this means that we are related to that which his no longer here, and it also serves as a studying tool, so that we might learn from others past experiences.
The people in the town are much the same as people today, in that individuals are still wary of new ideas. For the town people it was the Child, for us it is Cloning. These people, these ideas are terrifying by nature, and for some simply mean demons. Some will go out of their way to rid the world of these things and ideas. But are not these “new” things a representation of our imagination. Our imagination is continually poked and prodded, others mock it, and still we continue on our set course to understand, and explore it more. Just as Ovid wanted to understand the child, so do we want to understand myths and our own imagination. By following his imagination and striving to understand the child Ovid learned so many things, and perhaps that is what actually saved him, the idea of something exciting something that could have jumped right out of the pages of one of his stories. Perhaps if we were to follow our imagination more we would live a more vibrant life, after all we would be learning something new (or remembering it as it were) and that in and of itself makes one want to get up in the morning, no matter how stressful the day is going to be.
This book, though not actually a Classical book, still is relevant to our class. If there is something to be learned from the past, something that we might understand (even if it is fictional) then we should know to follow our imagination and understanding myths is not a bad thing, especially when you are fascinated by them.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009


The tales in Ovid's metamorphasis all share on thing in common, the theme of changing. Sometimes a person is changed into a beast, while at other times a man may be changed due to blood on a piece of clothing. In some way through out the tale a transformation occures within the characters. All these things seem mythological, however they seem to be a metaphore for the real reactions of humans.

In Actaeon, he is turned into a stag for viewing Diane naked and bathing, quite literally he becomes horny. Is he not like so many young people, men and women, viewing that which is forbidden. No matter how wrong it may be, or how detrimental it may be to us, we are still drawn to it. Is a part of us changing or are just acting on our baser instincts. Perhaps part of what draws us to these things which are forbidden is the fact that they are forbidden, and against the rules, and perhaps for a brief fleeting moment, it feels right, and good, and we want to continue upon this course. Our baser instincts that lead us, are the "animal" in us, much like the stag that Actaeon is turned into. We continue upon these paths only be lead to a place that brings harm to us. As beasts we are torn apart by the beast within us, and the beasts around us that continue to hunt that which is forbidden, mayhap the warning in this particular tale is to not be held captive by the beast within us, no matter the small gratification it offers.

Changing almost seems to offer a way out, by saying that it is not our fault, that we were over taken by something that which we cannot control. If all the characters made excuses for their transformations would that make them less valid? I believe so, because with each new transformation is another person behind it, and as such blame can always be placed elsewhere. I think maybe it is time that we stop making excuses for the actions and "transformations" that happen within us. Maybe then we will learn the lessons quicker and without so many pitfalls.

March 23 Class Notes

Metampsychosis: is reincarnation, most especially of the soul into another form, including plants animals, as well as rocks.

Classical Literature

  • Greek and Roman literature

  • In another class one would read something from Homer (Illiad etc.) but we read Homeric Hymns

  • for the greeks one would read:

  • something from the 3 tragedians (Antigone)

  • something Phylisophical plato or aristotle (the symposium)

  • something from ancient comedy usually Aristophanies or Plautud (Lysistrata)

  • for the romans (which is derived from the greeks)

  • Virgils Aneun

  • instead we ready Ovid's Metamorphasis

Our class may seem scattered, just as Ovid's tales seem to be, however Ovid's are all connected by the common theme of change


  • Antigone:

  • Formal Tragedy: text that follows certain principles

  • Catharsis: a part of formal tragedy, it is a purging of the feelings of pity and terror

  • why are we attracted to things that repell us

  • if you are depressed after reading one of these tales there is either something wrong with you or the author, because one should be able to leave the feelings behind because we have purged them from our being.

  • the writer represents these so we do not have to, it cleanses us, by witnessing violence

Man Reading:

  • read at the beginning of the year, may have seemed irrelevant, now it makes sense

  • the obituary, of the man who was preceded in death by his 5 yr. daughter, now reminds us of Hecuba burying her grandson, we now understand her speach as well


  • the plane crash in butte, helps to show the tragedy of the loss of a young life.

  • all is suffering all is fleeting

  • Andromica in the Trojan Woman, was the woman who lost a child, coincidentally she was played by the mother of Natashia Richardson, who died this past week.

  • Coincidence is alwasy 1 in 3

  • There was a suicide in California, a professor of Ocean Studies, who was the son of Sylvia Plath who committed suicide, and was a famous poet, who was married to Ted Hughes, who translated the book we are reading......he lost a son

  • Someone must exorcise all these tragedies for us, so they do not happen to us, who will write them down?

  • if you do not write about something it will never leave you alone.

If you believe that you can do something better than the gods and succeed you will be punished.

Marsius played the flute better than appollo who hung him up

Ovid wrote his book in the year 8, he was a contemporary of jesus christ. the writing of this book marked the end of an era, the end of classical literataure and mythology.


  • one min. presentations on wednesday, on piece you had to read.
  • read an imaginary life:
  • write one page and post on blog on what does the book have to do with the class due next monday.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

March 13 Class Notes

On monday, do one min presentations on a story from Ted Hughes Tales from Ovid

Worst that can be imagined was explored and close to perfected by Shakespeare.
  • Titas Andronicus= eating other people
  • King Lear= old man loses his daughter, one character edgar has infamous quotes
  • "It's never the worst as long as you can say 'this is the worst'" this being a reference to the daughter having her tongue ripped out, and creating a tapestry to tell the story
  • "the worst returns to laughter"

Everyone should read Ovid because it is essential to our literature, and if you took it out of Shakespeare you would lose close to 90% of his work

Situations can always get worse as long as you can convey your meaning in some way.

Sophie's Choice with Merele Streep, shows the worst choice for a parent


  • buries grandson, on her son's sheild
  • her grandson once said that when she died he would cut his hair and lead his troops past her tomb, but that will never happen
  • he was the child whom the greeks feared
  • this fear is the fear the comes when reason goes away
  • gives up everything she has to the child
  • places a black shrowd over him
  • she has very few gifts to give the child to take with him to the underworld
  • she would have dressed him on his wedding day, but instead is dressing him for his funeral
  • her one consolation is that his father will be there to greet him
  • He had to be killed because the greeks thought he would grow up and seek revenge


  • summoned by her father to "marry Achilles"
  • really he wants to summon the winds by sacrificing her since she is a virgin
  • the sun means more to her people than anything else "the sun has never seemed so bright"
  • she will die proudly with grace and beauty
  • death will be her wedding, her children and her glory.
  • In the short time that Achilles knows her he falls in love with her
  • says he will fight the entire army for her
  • she doesnt want him to die, and asks that he live through the war
  • she will not let her mother mourn, or be mad at her father
  • wants to see her brother Orstes, who later kills his mother, to avenge his father, who killed Iphogenia
  • Asks her mother to not blame her father, Agamemnon
  • **in the book there is a miss print, she really did die, and was not saved by Athena, and a deer sacrificed in her place**

Monday, March 16, 2009

Class Assignments for Monday 23

Allan, Jacuelyn 4 Ages
Axline, Nicholas Lycaeon
Bandstra, Abbie Flood
Basirico, Grace Phaethon
Belcourt, Anne Callisto
Bjorklund, Cloe Prosperpina
Bowles, Shauni Arethusa
Brenna, Deborah Tiresias
Browing, Elizabeth Echo and Narcissus
Burke, Sarah Erysochton
Cassidy, Daniel Semele
Drummond, Kris Peleus
Forney, Luke Actaeon
Franquemont, Margaret Myrrha
Gonzalez, Rio Venus and Adonis
Hassler, Jake Atlanta
Hickman, Stacey Phaethon
Kahly, Heather Pygmalion
Kester, Rachel Hercules 1
Killham, Erica Hercules 2 (birth)
Kitchens, Kayla Cygnus
Knox, Sally Arachne
Miller, Ben Midas
Morris, Zach Bacchus
Mullet, Vernice Niobe
Purphey, Caitlin Salmacis
Nelson, Christina Tereus
Omura, Misaki Pyramus
Papal, Jillian Callisto
Potter, Katie Echo and Narcissus
Richardson, Brittany Semele
Riley, Elizabeth Actaeon
Roloff, Samuel Lycaeon
Sarren, Jeremy Atalanta
Schipman, Shoni Pygmalion
Sing, Kristin Hercules 1
Smith, Zach Arachne
Soule, Shelby Bacchus
Stanley, Jenny Lynn Midas
Stoddard, Sam Niobe
Tetzet, Crystal Cygnus
Waters, Alyssa Tereus
Zweilowksy, Brian Pyramus and Thisbe

Thursday, March 12, 2009


In Lysistrata the two choruses argue and exchange insults, and they are quite colorful, as a sister I face this with almost every encounter with my siblings.
Kate: Shut up, Liz you are not as great as you think you are
Liz: Are you kidding me Kate?! At least I'm going to amount to something
Kate: Oh, like anybody would want to be like you
Liz: Enough people do, and I have more friends that you do because I'm nicer
Kate: At least I'm not fake
Liz: Oh, and what are you when you talk to the parents
Kate: Like they even matter
Liz: You don't even appreciate what they do for you
Kate: They just want to control our lives
Liz: Like they could control you, one of these days you are gonna mess up and youll feel like a real JackAss
Kate: Liz, you are such a bitch, god I can't even believe we are related
Liz: Fuck you kate
Kate: Dumb Bitch, Dani is a better sister than you
[exit Liz]
Kate and I did not talk for a long time, when she came to apologize I told her I couldnt deal with her and how much it hurt me.

Sisters get into fights, its just the way it works. But the thing about Love is that no matter what it continues and you will love them through thick and thin and even though they do some pretty shitty things to you. Love is indescribale, but it does transend distance and time. The Trojan women knew love and the many deaths they faced the loved ones lost. The women knew how love would last even after they were diveed up between the Greeks. Sisters were separated, they must have fought and even possibly right before they were separated. Though my sister and I fight fairly often we still love one another and if we were separated nothing would stop us, the same way that the Trojan women were, we would do everything possibly to find one another, and beat all obsticles. Though the times have changed, women, or at least my sister and I have changed very little from the women of the past.

March 11 Class Notes

Over Spring Break use blogs as opportunity to research various texts

Movie: last hours of the war
  • does not do justice to the greek play
  • trojan woman hate Helen: they believe she is the reason for the deaths and the war
  • Trjoan women are to be sold as slaves and concubines

Fall of troy:

  • Athena, Hera, and Aphrodite want to know which of them is the most beautiful, they ask Paris of Troy as an objective party, and they all bribe him, however Aphrodite's bribe is most compelling, she offers the most beautiful woman in the world: Helen, however the problem was she was married to Menelaus the King of Sparta. Paris takes her, or convinces her to leave depending on the interpretation. The Greeks pursue her and so the Trojan war begins...

Back to the Movie/ Book

  • Hecuba wants Menelaus to kill Helen...before he sees her, fore she knows if he lays eyes on her he will be swayed by her beauty.
  • Helen on the other hand must convince Menelaus not to kill her, she asks what her fate is
  • Hecuba says she must not die without being heard.
  • Helen asks who really began the evils, she says Hecuba when she gave birth, and Priam when he did not stop his son's actions,
  • Helen says she really had no part in it because she was seduced by Paris and Aphrodite.
  • She believes that it is her doing, and because of her capture that the Greeks have no enemies, if they had not treated her as an object then they would not be in this position in the first place
  • Says when Paris died, she should have left, and claims she tried


  • Paris was beautiful, and Helen was seduced by his beauty and his money, she enjoyed having the eastern men watch her and she liked having all the beautiful clothes
  • believes that Helen would have gone with the winner no matter who it was
  • wants the men to spit on Helen
  • Tells Helen that she should have come to her husband with shame begging for forgiveness
  • Reminds her of all the families that were lost
  • wantes Menelaus to be worthy of his crown
  • Menelaus stops her from killing herself
  • says he will giver her to the Greeks to kill


  • The Trojan women are the only ones left at the end of the war
  • Casandrea went crazy possessed by Apollo, but no one believes her.
  • she knows that Greeks are going to get it
  • Athena withdraws her protection with them
  • Helen's sister was Cytomnestra they married the two powerful greek men, Menelaus and Agamemnon respectively.
  • Hecuba had two daughters: Ployzena is dead, killed as a sacrifice to Achilles, Cassandra is Agamemnon's concubine, her daughter in law Adremicha was married to Hector
  • Hector is dead, and they had a son who is about six years old
  • she is given two choices, because no man will take the heir of Troy he must be killed, so she either fights and they take her son and they don't bury him or she gives them her son and they still kill him and they give him a proper burial.

Tragedy: the worst thing is to live, especially after the death of loved ones
Aristotle said Euripedies understood the heart of comedy, and the worst possible outcome is to live after everyone lives

Trojan Women Actors and information

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

My Justin

When I think about tragedy and its association with comedy, and how you must understand them both to be truly appreciative of either, I think of Justin.

August 25, 2007. Just another day, the first week of school. It was hot out, but really dry at the same time. It was my best friend, Justin, sister's birthday. Lunch time rolls around and everyone gets in their cars and race down to the local IGA to get food. Justin hops in the car with his friend Clint and two other guys from our class. They head out of town.

I was sitting in Spanish class. Usually Justin met me by our lockers and we went to class together. He didn't show up, or to our next class. I was mad at him, he didn't show, and I expected him to. As I left class Justin's sister came up to me "Justin was in a car wreck" "I figured" was all I could reply, and walked away. He had broken his ribs, but the principle said he was fine.

I was worried but I went to volleyball practice anyway, my coach seemed indifferent. I was scared the rest of the evening, but i continued to the rodeo where I was to sing the National Anthem. I was walking with my friend Jackie, and her younger brother ran up and told me Clint had died. Complete shock, it is the only way to describe it, the blood drained from my limbs and I was completely numb. Jackie punched her little brother. What could I do, I just had to sing, Jackie came with me and held my hand.

I went home that night, I found out Justin was placed in intensive care in Billings, my mother promised to take me there the next day. I did not sleep that night.

The next day I had a volleyball tournament, I got on the bus and everyone was silent...until I sat down. Suddenly the rumors were flying Justin was in denver, his lung was punctured, they took out his spleen, he had been life flighted...there was nothing I could do. Finally I called my friend Myles who was there with Justin, where ever he was.

Justin was on a breathing machine, Myles said. He was in Billings, and he was fine. He had woken up and Justin's father and Myles had spent some time with him. He was weak, and the only thing he could do was move his hands. They said he would make an L with his finger then point to his face, and scribble things in the air. He did this over and over again. He was getting frustrated until finally they figured out what he was saying. L-I-Z. He wanted me to know he was okay, that he was alive, and he wanted me there. All I could do was cry in relief

We flew up to Billings as quickly as our car would take us. We rushed to the hospital, Myles, our friend Kim and I embraced as soon as we saw each other and just held on to one another. Finally I went up stairs. Justin's parents had not seen him that day because they wanted me to beable to see him.

The walk to his room was done as quickly as possible, but took forever, a sense of doom came upon me, up until I saw his face. We looked at each other and broke down. "Don't cry Liz, I'm fine, Please don't cry" which of course made me cry more. All i could do was hold his hand and stroke his hair.

A horrible tragedy, a young life was lost, just as the most horrible of all tragedies are, however if there is one thing that I learned from this, it is that love matters, platonic, lovers, it does not matter, as long as it is present, just as in the Symposium, love is all. To appreciate the good there must be bad, for me I know I love stronger, because of my justin and the tragedy that hit us both.

March 9 Class Notes


  • pg 22
  • tear your balls off
  • unpleasant flighting between the choruses
  • Arostophanes shows himself as a masoganist
  • pg 23
  • flighting
  • example The Sandlot
  • old men and old women fighting = old hag, not your slave, you can't judge me, set fire to your hair
  • women are victorious because they scueltch the men's fire
  • commisioner comes in, the men want the women punished
  • pg 27
  • can't let women win
  • Lysistrata says, the women will starve the war todeath, because the women take care of the money, they are the planners and managers
  • the men protest it is not the same because women do not fight in wars
  • men support more war like leaders
  • the women dress the councelor up as a women and then as a corpse
  • pg 34-35
  • women use a wool metaphor,
  • take something dirty and clean it until it is good and useful
  • women fight war two times, they have sons and lose them as well as their husbands to the war
  • men believe justice is up to them


  • understand the making fun of it
  • not biological in the penis sense but in the symbolic sense as a male view of the world
  • such as the Lewistown Canons


  • pg 40
  • women no longer staunch in their vows, many are sneaking off
  • lysistrata must change their mind
  • one woman hides a helmet under her dress to give the illusion that she is having a baby
  • REFERENCE TO OVID: Tarius goes to retreive sister in law, and falls in love and rapes her
  • pg 48
  • Ciresas is only interested in sex, not is son or anything else
  • pg 57
  • all men are depicted wearing cloaks, w/ erections
  • Aristophanes insists things must work out in the end which is comedy in general


  • pg 61
  • PARABASIS when chorus looks out at the audience and seaks as one
  • sense of comeraderie and reconciliation with characters and the audience
  • pg 64
  • representation on cover of book is allegorically as the stuffed doll
  • resolving Pelepenesian war
  • absolutly necessary for comedy

Th Golden Ass

  • the original mid summer's night dream


  • ends happily


  • pg 72
  • importance of reconciliation
  • gives up hosility
  • feast, weddings, and dancing are all in comedies
  • comedy is about the community
  • tragedy is about the individual


  • to stand outside yourself

Trojan Women

  • melodramatic
  • Aristophanies has the best sense of tragedy because he had a tragic sense of life
  • Agamemnon comes home and it is not going to be good
  • Ajax raped Cassandra
  • Poseiden and Athena decide the Greeks must be punished for this mis deed
  • Agamemnon killed his own daughter
  • he is killed by his wife and her lover, because of his folly

Thursday, March 5, 2009

March 4 Class Notes

Recent translations of ancient texts tend to be more blunt
Lysistrata especially uses Flying text which is conversation that leans on the side of crude and vulgar

The Symposium
  • must be seen in context
  • is a benign sort of Flying,
  • everyone has a different view
  • human situations

It is not important what you can DO with your degree, but it is important what you can LEARN from your degree.

Parent of Love= poverty and plenty


  • an intermediate spirit
  • humans operate a different level
  • in the end what we quest for is Beauty so it is a quest that starts there can in in a lover of wisdom and that of immortal and the good
  • love is a part of the activity of loving
  • using language is Erotic


  • not a speech, it is a story, a narrative of love
  • desires Socrates but it is never consummated
  • his being a love should be valued
  • addicted to Socrates because of his inner beauty
  • (Plato understood the power of a Frame narrative)
  • Similar to BBC movie Almost Strangers


  • most primitive comedy is Gross and Aggressive
  • Translated by Sara Rooden who is a woman, and is making a name for herself as one of the foremost translators of classic literature

Burning of Library in Alexandria

  • lost so many precious, and ancient texts
  • was burned by anti-intellectuals

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Lysistrata's Men

Wow what a book! I find it fascinating that in a world where women were little more than slaves that a tale so intricate, filled with feminine power was created, and by a man no less. The unity of women is quite fascinating to me.The women who by all odds should have been enemies as well managed to come together for a common good. Perhaps this is a further illustration of the difficulty of understanding the female mind.

These women especially the Sparta women come from a warrior culture, and by all means should be accustomed to war. This is after the Trojan war, so fighting is obviously a part of their history that is very important to them. One would assume that they would have followed their men and sons and supported them, fore the men were fighting for something they truly believed in so why weren't the women supportive? Maybe they understood that lives were not worth the cause, whatever it may have been.

By coming together the women managed to do something that few cultures had managed to do before or since them; they stopped a war with little to no violence. They suffered for the greater good. Though this book is quite light hearted there is some very serious subject matter, the women themselves face the possibility of being brutalized and of being raped for the sake of the men that are doing the very dastardly deeds to them.

Withholding sex was very smart of them, and they managed to control the men, even though they were denying themselves as well. Most humans, I would assume, enjoy sex and as such can be controlled through it. Essentially the act could be handled alone, however if we follow the belief of Aeristophanies that we are all meant to be with a single person, then the act of procreation does not have the same level of pleasure as if we were with our true loved one.

Truly these women were quite cunning, and did everything that men said they were: manipulative, cunning, and (in their mind) false. However, they did what was necessary to save these men, and perhaps they should have been more appreciative once it was all said and done, because these same manipulative, false women, saved their lives.

March 2 Class Notes

Lysistrata is obscene,
off stage, that which is not fit in front of an audience was considered obscene

Finnegan's Wake
  • Anne Olivia is reflecting on her life
  • she is turning back into the river
  • wants one who understands her
  • most famous unread book in the world
  • motion of the words, holds a musicality and a sense of language and poetry
  • most beautiful passage of literature in the English language
  • Feminine principle at work, she is all women
  • Read James Joyce!!!!!

Thee Skin of Our Teeth By Thorton Wilder

  • interpretive Finnegan's Wake

Leave behind the notion that you must understand everything

Read Jennylynn's Blog on Symposium

  • Teacher's guide
  • can revisit her beautiful rendition


  • basic context of the speakers
  • historical context ex: Socrates was killed because he was "corrupting the youth of Athens"
  • Most enjoyable thing to do is recall Socrates


  • Greek word for truth
  • Look at Pullman's trilogy (the Golden Compass) will find "truth seekers"
  • Letha means to forget
  • A= not
  • in consequence literally translated truth is to not forget or REMEMBER!!!
  • we have forgotten everything


  • love and sacrifice


  • heavenly love vs. common love


  • love harmonizes us


  • we are tallies (coins broken apart and used for recognition)
  • look for soul mates and are a part of a broken half and look for the other that completes us


  • Love is beautiful and perfect


  • love can't be beautiful because of desire
  • love is desire, love is wanting loves meaning
  • love is an intermediate stage
  • love is looking for that which we doe not have
  • he learned it from Diotima
  • she said love is a great spirit between the gods and mortals
  • it is the immortality of the human soul
  • we must start at the bottom (rock) and work up to love that is more complicated
  • love the notion of the GOOD


  • praises Socrates
  • he is the worst because he loves him so much

Sunday, March 1, 2009


It has struck me within the last few days how important a Frame narrative is. The Symposium is one such piece, in which we do not really know what the true story could be, because it is so far removed, also Socrates's story in reference to Diotima is also a form of frame narrative. It seems like this could be an odd way of telling a story, or making a point, but is it really?

Our everyday lives are quite similar to a fram narrative. We are living our lives, with a set path, but perhaps every story we tell, or the stories of our friends and family are a story within our stoy. We could take a small chunk of our lives, the portion where we met our future spouse, or our years of high school, and use this small fragment to create an entire story. However, the point is that it is not the full story. There is more to it.

A Frame narrative can capture our imagination like few other things. How often when reading a book do you fall in love with a sub character, one that is seemingly of little importance, however you love the entire book for those two or three "inconsequential" individuals. These little parts can hold just as much drama, and excitement as any major part.

More than anything a frame narrative reiterates the point that there are truly no small parts. Every story is worth telling. Though this story of Socrates and his buddies could have only have been one of many stories, and though it is told through several individuals we can still learn much from it. Just think if this one little portion Socrates's nights out was not told, an entire enthralling novel would have been lost. Though it may have seemed just a bit of gossip at the time it influence a way of thinking far beyond their time.

To me it is comforting and frightening to think that nothing that I do is small, that it has potential to affect so many people. what if I mess it up!!?!??! What if it is detrimental to others, well at this point the only thing you can do is live your life and hope for the best, and that maybe someday we will be looked at as the next Socrates.

February 27 Class Notes

Tengents lead us back to the subject matter, ex. Groundhog's Day to The Myth of the Eternal Return

Alyssa's blog has What do we Talk About When We Talk About Love

Till we Have Faces
by C.S. Lewis
must get back to the basics

  • Homecoming
  • related to nostalgia or loning for home

The Rock is our Communal Sacred Rock, and Stacey found it while walking with her dogs.


  • philosophical phenomenon
  • musical Plato "The Rock is the way to the ONE"

Check out Luke's blog!!!

  • did assignment exactly and correctly
  • when something is interesting tell who the speaker is, whose idea it belongs to
  • background information
  • talks about the links, between his thoughts and the text
  • sets up a way for us to learn
  • tells of the problem of reductionist version of the Symposium, lose the musicality of the work


  • the writer of comedy and tragedy are the same!
  • must be skilled in both
  • must know both parts to understand love
  • everyone wants to believe everything is good, but we must develop a tragic outlook on life
  • there is both happiness and sadness but we must understand it all


  • must know the speaker
  • fifth removed story
  • stories within stories....ex: The Wife Of Bath in the Canterbury Tales
  • Who is telling the truth pg 15

Friday, February 27, 2009

Love the little things

Why do we not apply "A Rock, A Tree, A Cloud" to our lives? It seems like such a simple concept. Love the small things, understand love, that is to be love, and to love something in return, before moving to the complicated.

As humans we do not function this way. From the time that we are born we are constantly told that we are loved by our parents and our relatives. So we naturally try to be at that level of loving right at the beginning of our creation. And it is no wonder that we are confused by love for the rest of our existence.

We search to find something that completes us, but we do not understand the complete selflessness of love. If we were able to understand how simple love truly is perhaps we would be better off, because we would finally not worry about all the bumps along the way that occur when you love someone.

Now if we try to love a rock for example it may be harder than we first though because we have to work backwards. We overlook the rock, because it isn't "living" and if we treat it this way then we treat it as inconsequential.

However, how often do we say, "I love that song" "I love lamp" (for you Will Feral people) these things are all simple, but they are just turns of phrase and mean little to us in the end. Perhaps when we really do begin to love what someone else has created rather than what we our selves have created, then we can grow as human beings.

February 25 Class Notes

Sorry how late these are!

Story Tellers in Symposium:
  1. Apollodorus/Aristodenus
  2. Pheadrus
  3. pansanius
  4. Eryximadus
  5. Arisophanes
  6. Agathon
  7. Socrates (Says his story is really Diotima's who is really a woman)
  8. Alcibiedes

This was the mother of all bull sessions, and happens to be a secular version of "The Last Supper" where Jesus and his Disiples had supper before Jesus was killed

Socrates claims that Diotima said he was stupid and she wanted to educate him, and that is the story that he tells, the story that she told him.

Plato is more of an artist rather than a philosopher, because the story is five times removed, and makes us wonder about the stories factuality.

"A Rock, A Tree, A Cloud" is about the beauty withing, Soul vs. Surface. , which helps to explain why Acibiedes loves Socrates, because even though he is a gross looking old man, his mind, and his soul, are beautiful and and attractive. such as the Elephant Man


  • Plato's theory that you right now know everything there is to know, however you just forgot it
  • literally translated means "recollection"
  • to greek's the worst flaw was to be ignorant


- done in stages, like your education, and an example is the ladder

"The Man Who Fell to Earth"

  • Was supposed to get water for his sick family
  • Is distracted by the television, and forgets his purpose
  • cautionary
  • Link to Movie


  • knowledge or religion
  • world is a distraction
  • it temptes us towards the vulgar
  • we have a spark of knowledge and it glows everytime we find and follow our lifes purpose

"A Tree, A Rock, A Cloud,"

  • Must love something small before you canmove up
  • We start at the wrong end of love, with the climax
  • Always say "Remeber This" ex Dido's Lament

Everything you do in life should be in remembrance of something

Our Birth is a Rmembering and Forgetting

Whenever we see something beautiful our shoulder blades itch, this is because we are remembering when we were able to fly around on wings of desire

Two loves:

  • Phil, so a philosopher is a lover of wisdom
  • Eros

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

the Symposium's interest

As I mentioned in one of my previous blogs about the Symposium, I said my favorite passage was the one describing why we fall in love with someone else; we were once connected to them. To me this is so beautiful, and it answers the question of our need for love. Love is a part of who we are and we need it to feel complete.

Needing someone is not being week, instead it is just being who we were meant to be. We were supposed to be paired with another individual. Someone out there someone is our other half, our better half even. The love we hold in our hearts for that other person is an amazing. Perhaps that burning sensation we feel in the region of our heart when we think of that significant other is nothing more that our body remembering what it was like to be joined together as we were intended to be.

Maybe that is why we are so facinated with sex. It is like that is our only real way of knowing of our partner is our other half. It is the closest way we can get to being physically sealed together with another person. Sex is used as a tool, a recognization tool, in the hopes that if the sex is good enough we will have found our other half. Granted not everyone uses sex this way, some abstain from sex, and others are completly promiscueous and don't feel the need for anything more that a physical connection. However, are these same people hoping to fill the void that they have for someone who is their other half?

Perhaps this is also why we fall in love with our friends so often. We are compatable with them, thats why they are our friends. But maybe we also secretly hope that we can form a romantic relationship with some of our friends, because possible, hopefully even, they could be the one person on this earth that was meant for us and for us alone.

February 23 Class Notes

Read Deborah's Blog, Find information on symposium

Find something interesting about the symposium

Read two short stories:
  • Carson McCuller's " A Tree, Rock Cloud"
  • Raymond Carver "What do we talk about, when we talk about love"


  • The city where you live,
  • political attachments were very important in the ancient world

Depending on how the class does as a whole, on the test, he will either give extra credit or take away points on the essay questions.

Where are you going, Where have you been

  • Joyce Carol Loyse
  • guy @ Mall comes up to a young girls gazing at herself in the mirror, and says he knows she has been waiting for him. He later shows up at her house
  • an example of Persephone's abduction


  • drinking party
  • conversations, popular topic: LOVE
  • imitating Plato's symposium
  • a 2nd or 3rd hand story
  • they take homosexual love for granted, considering it to be more divine than the common love between men and women


The Symposium, tries to explain just exactly what love is, and why we love. In our everyday lives it is difficult to figure out, and put an exact definition to what love adds up to. Is it friends, is it family, is that one person that you burn for? Personally It is D) all of the above.

The love for ones family is like a warm blanket, one that will always be there for you. When you truly know you are loved by your family you know that nothing is strong enough to break the bond that you share with them, nothing and no one can come between you. Even when you are terrified to call home because something has gone wrong in your life, you know that they will still help you anyway that they can.

The love of a friend is completely different. Friends seem to understand you as no one else can. They see into who you are and can help you through the toughest of times. But at the same time a friends love can feel fleeting. How often do best friends fight and quit speaking to one another. Most times one spends their time wondering if they made the wrong step, and sometimes are afraid to be honest with their friends because they are afraid to lose them. The love of a friend is so diverse it is almost impossible to put an exact lable on it. It is ever changing.

Oh the love of another person, someone who is your other half who completes your makes you feel passion like none other is the best love of all. The slow consuming burn for another individual is perfectly explained in the Symposium. The need to find your other half is because we were once two people together. This idea shows our need for completion and the need that we feel to find it in another human being. The love of another in a sexual connotation, is shown by the blush of our cheeks, and the stutter on our lips, it makes us feel awkward, and helpless. At the same time empowered and driven because we are consumed with the love of another.

All of these combined explain love to me. Fore love cannot be just one entity, it must be all three. They all exist together, and help to make us human. Without love of anykind we would be cold, without feeling, and empty as a race. The love we have and how we care for it define who we are and in the end make us better people.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Our parents

What if we all had parents or a relative like Creon? He seems to be an over bearing individual, more concerned with what everyone else needs rather than his family. The Kingdom comes first no if, ands, or buts. As a member of his family how would you feel? Knowing that he would help out a stranger before he would you. Granted the man has to look out for the kingdom, since hes kind of running it, but as a member of his family wouldn't you feel abandoned?

I do not believe that it would be wrong to assume that few if any of our parents are in a position like Creon and his family. We are not placed in a position where we feel exactly as the individuals in Antigone felt, however I believe it is also okay to assume that at times we have felt like our parents do not care about us, even if it is for a small amount of time. Whether it is there job or it is during a sport or anything else that comes to your mind, I'm sure there have been times when you have doubted your place in your parent's life, much like Antigone and Haemon must have felt.

Antigone's father leaves after blinding himself, and her mother hung herself. This makes one wonder how important she was to her parents. For a parent to be so far gone that they would think of themselves before their children, is a sad thing indeed.

Fortunately for myself, I have never been in such a situation. I have always known my parents love me(even if my dad is quite stoic :)) and in this regard I count myself to be lucky. I know not what I would do if things were to the contrary. However, it is almost cerain I would have been much more rebelious, just as Antigone was.

It seems Antigone is doing this in part for attention, as though she feels the need to be noticed by her parents even though they are no longer there. Maybe she is saying, look at me, care for me, as I care for my brother, who is now dead. She hold true to her familly in the face of doubt as her parents never could.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

February 18 Test!! Notes

Antigone dies a virgin, and according to Greek tragedy, she dies in the prime of her life without fulfilling that which has the potential to make her happy, that being a wife and a mother. This also continues with the marriage and death relationship. However her fiance dies with her in his arms, of course this after she hangs herself and he stabs himself. In the end though Creon takes full responsibility for the deaths in his family.

65% of the test will be these questions or based on them.

  1. What does hubris mean?
  • Pride or arrogance

2. What happened at the Elucinian Mysteries?

  • Done: Reenactment of the abduction of Persephone

  • Seen: Stalk of wheat or grain of corn

  • Said: Rain Conceive

3. What are Steiner's Five Conflicts (in order)!

  • Men vs. Women

  • Age vs. Youth

  • Individual vs. State

  • Living vs. Dead

  • Gods vs. Humans

4. What is an epithet?

  • a sort of nick name; a handle; give example: trim ankled Persephone, Wily Odysseus

5. Which two characters exemplify the five conflicts?

  • Antigone and Creon

6. What is Stichonmithia?

  • rapid exchange of one liners

7. What is sparagmous

  • the tearing or rendering of living flesh

8. Define Anthropocentric view

  • in the Greek tradition, the view that is based on humans

9. Define miasma

  • The pollution, specifically in relation to Creon, when the dead are not treated properly

10. Know Antigone's view of politics....The Notion of a Moving target, and the Origin of Creon's Name

  • she favors the gods rule rather than the king's decree, and politics in general do not interest her. She stands for her values: family, ceremony and especially the duty of the living to bury their family.

  • The play warns against moral complacency. Antigone drives Creon crazy, who drives his Son crazy in consequence, and eventually because they do not do what is right everyone close to Creon dies.

  • Creon's name means ruler, and he works to keep the kingdom happy, and order, yet he is not overly ambitious

11. The Myth of the Eternal Return

  • Endless repetition of things

  • In relationship to Demeter and Persephone, from Winter to Spring etc.

12. Who is Hermes like with relation to the show "Family Guy"

  • Stewie

13. Thorough said we should read the __________ rather than the __________.

  • eternities, times

14. Who is guilty of taking one from above and tossing them below?

  • Creon tossing Antigone

  • Zeus tossing Persephone to Hades

15. Define In illo Tempore

  • In the great time, ex. we do this because in the beginning they did this...etc.

16. Which 2 mythological figures are poly tropic?

  • Hermes

  • Odesis

17. Who are the three great tragedians?

  • Sophocles

  • Euripides

  • Aeschylus

18. Who was the God of Crossroads?

  • Hermes

19. Define Agon

  • Conflict that leads to agony

20. All that is _________ possesses the ______.

  • past, present

21. According to the chorus what are the two best things that can happen to you?

  • The second best is to die

  • The first is to have never been born

22. Define Sarvan Darum, Sarvam Anitium

  • All is suffering, all is fleeting

23. What injury did Oedipus have as a babe?

  • He had holes drilled into his ankles

24. What does Antigone's name mean?

  • Against Birth

25. What is Hermes excuse for his innocence?

  • He was just born yesterday.

26. What did Robert Johnson do at the crossroads?

  • He sold his soul to the devil so he could play the guitar

27. why do we laugh according to Freud?

  • to keep from crying

28. what does it mean to make something Anigogic?

  • going in to the heavenly realm, try to use heavenly interpretation

29. What does senex mean?

  • Senator