What will I study in A Level Classical Civilisation?
At A Level, classical civilisation does not require any previous knowledge and so is open to students who have never studied anything classical before, as well as those who have. Our aim is to offer students as wide an understanding and appreciation of the classical world as possible. With this aim in mind we have selected modules which give as much opportunity as possible to study different aspects of Greek and Roman life, such as art, literature, archaeology, history, drama and society. Study of this subject at A Level helps students to develop good written communication skills and analysis skills, which are highly prized by universities and employers. The A-Level itself is considered to be rigorous and is rated as such by Oxbridge and the top universities in the country.
The subject is fascinating, engaging and varied at A Level, with opportunities to develop new knowledge or expand on existing knowledge. It also gives ample opportunity for discussion, debate and analysis.
The World of the Hero
This is a literature module in which students study both the Odyssey and the Aeneid. They consider similarities and differences in the two texts, including the authors’ ideas about destiny, the gods, heroism, hospitality, war and homecoming. Students are also encouraged to debate issues, such as whether the Aeneid is a propaganda piece, and if so, what evidence we can find for this in the text.
Here, we explore the importance of the gods to the Greek way of life. Students learn about how the Greeks saw their gods and the importance of ritual, festivals and sacrifice. Places associated with worship are studied, including the Athenian Acropolis, Olympia and Delphi. Finally, the significance of the death of Socrates is considered, who was found guilty of charges of atheism.
The Invention of the Barbarian
This module looks at sources from both literature and archaeology. It explores ancient dramatic productions as well as ancient historical texts, and the archaeology covers Greek and Persian artefacts. Students consider ideas about how foreigners are viewed in Greek culture, warfare between states, ideals and how different peoples portrayed themselves through art and artefacts. We take an in depth look at the Persian Wars and various famous battles fought against the Persians, as well as exploring the topic of Amazon warrior women and studying the play, Medea.