History Writing in Antiquity: Herodotus and Thucydides
Meet the authors of the past as you study the work of Herodotus and Thucydides, the first historians. Gain an overview of their writing and the advances they made. Examine the techniques that are used to study Herodotus and Thucydides themselves.
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The subject aims at students acquiring the following generic and specialised skills:
- the acquisition of a broad knowledge of the histories by Herodotus and Thucydides
- the development of independent and analytical critical judgment
- the ability to identify a number of different approaches to the reading of history and to offer critical judgement on their application to specific texts
- the ability to assess and prioritise information, to treat different types of disdegree and to analyse their aims and functions
- advanced written communication skills, with particular emphasis on the ability to discuss complex material in writing, to reflect on research and organise ones ideas and to comprehend alternative views and respond to them profitably; also the ability to construct sustained arguments in writing, supported by clear logic and detailed research
- skills in clear presentation of written work and self-organisation and time management, necessary for the successful completion of assignments.
- General introduction to Herodotus and Thucydides
- Herodotus and his sources
- Women, gods, politics in Herodotus
- Herodotus as literature
- Thucydides: the composition problem
- Use of speeches by Thucydides
- Past or present? Model history
- Reader and text
- Structure and intratextuality
- History and historiography
- Overview: Thucydides and Herodotus
You cannot enrol in this subject if you have successfully completed any of the following subject(s) because they are considered academically equivalent:
No special requirements
This subject was previously known as HST803 History Writing in Antiquity: Herodotus and Thucydides.
Herodotus and Thucydides are seen as the founding fathers of History. Their work has had a profound influence on later historians. This subject examines their different approaches to writing history as well as examining a range of modern historiographical approaches to the reading of these two influential historians. This subject will give students a thorough understanding of the major works by Herodotus and Thucydides, along with a comprehensive overview of the history of the study of these authors. At the same time, it will introduce some of the major historiographical techniques used in the study of these authors, and give the students the opportunity to analyse a range of critical responses to the writing of history. It will teach students to read these authors within their historical and historiographical context, to understand the characteristics of their particular type or genre and to evaluate the historical information gathered from them.
- Essay 1 (20%)
- Essay 2 (40%)
- Online Discussion (15%)
- Paper (25%)