Homer's Odyssey

Bella Vivante
TUESDAYS 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.
January 24 - April 4, 2017. No class on March 14.
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Homer's Odyssey

Spring 2017
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1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.
January 24 - April 4, 2017. No class on March 14.


Main Campus



In this course we’ll explore Homer’s brilliant storytelling in The Odyssey: his tales of Odysseus’s struggles to return home after the Trojan War. While the poem highlights the hero’s fantastic adventures, the underlying meanings reflect profound social concerns: female and male identities, and their respective realms and relationships; revisiting The Iliad’s military-centered notions of heroism from social-oriented perspectives; the roles of gods; storytelling traditions, and more. The class looks at how these diverse tales interweave to create Odysseus’s story, his journey, and the challenges he must face to become the worthy husband, father, son, and man of society praised by the poem. Appreciating ancient Greek views on these perennially important themes provides valuable insights into our own ideas about these complex social issues, and why this engaging ancient poem continues to influence our contemporary thinking and creativity




Required Reading: 

Homer. The Odyssey. Trans. Charles Stein. Berkeley: North Atlantic Books, 2008. ISBN-13: 978-1556437281.

Course Registration

Meet Your Professor

Professor Emerita
Department of Religious Studies and Classics

Honored to receive 2018’s Ted & Shirley Taubeneck Superior Teaching Award, Bella brings her enthusiastic love of Ancient Greek poetry and culture to her HSP classes: Homer’s brilliant epics, select themes in Greek drama, Ancient Anatolia, more. See this dynamic antiquity in her Daughters of Gaia: Women in the Ancient Mediterranean, translation of Euripides’s Helen in Women on the Edge: Four Plays by Euripides, or Women and Family in Ancient Greece DVD.


Poetry Center
Dorothy Rubel Room
1508 E Helen
Tucson, AZ 85721
United States
Located on the SE corner of Helen Street and Vine Avenue, one block north of Speedway and three blocks west of Campbell Ave.

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