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Ancient Greek History - Audio

by Donald Kagan

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Description

(CLCV 205) This is an introductory course in Greek history tracing the development of Greek civilization as manifested in political, intellectual, and creative achievements from the Bronze Age to the end of the classical period. Students read original sources in translation as well as the works of modern scholars. This course was recorded in Fall 2007.

Customer Reviews

Fundamental Class, from a Great Scholar, from a Great School: For Free.

Learning the basics of ancient Greek history is great. Doing it for free is great. Learning it from Kagan, possibly the greatest 20th C scholar on the Peloponnesian War, is great. That he's both academic and professional, while being engaging and illustrative, is great.

And for the other reviewer that complained about his politics: yes, he does help students understand the past by relating it to more recent times, whether it be a recent American administration or Frederick the Great. However, I would not say that he is any more anti-religion than pro-religion, and, as he is a dogged conservative, his criticisms of the administration of the Iraq War (again, occasional, a topic of the time, and tied directly to the content) are not ideological, but practical and honest.

The only reason I'm not giving this five stars, though it's the class I hold up as a paradigm of iTunes U, is the frequency with which he clears his throat. Yes, he is old, and it's practically a rhetorical trademark. However, while this is an honest record of the man for history, I keep wishing some enterprising student at Yale would have edited out 90% of them, which would be easy, as he usually clears his throat in a distinct pause between words.

Traditional approach to ancient Greece

Professor Kagan's lectures are wonderfully organized and delivered with elan. The man knows his subject and delivers the goods. Kagan apparently doesn't have a politically correct bone in his body and this results in a celebration of the Greeks and their part in the initiation of Western Civilization. His aim throughout is to connect the goings-on of ancient Greece with the subsequent history of Western Civilization.

Wish I had the opportunity a long time ago

The college that I attended didn't have classes like this. A missed opportunity for me - but now, in my later years, I've learned a lot more about why things are the way they are by looking back at our history. Wonderful material by an excellent instructor.