The study of Classics is a dynamic, multifaceted discipline engaged in the exploration of a remarkably multicultural part of the world—the ancient Mediterranean—from early pre-history to Late Antiquity. Our goal is to fully understand the cultures of ancient Greece and Rome in the context of the wider Mediterranean basin, an area of religious, ethnic, linguistic, and cultural diversity.

Faculty

Our faculty are scholars and researchers, who publish widely, translate texts, and guest lecture at conferences and other educational institutions. They work closely with students to develop their scholarship, critical thinking skills and capacity to understand how ancient cultures and civilizations influence contemporary society.

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Department Overview

The study of Classics is a dynamic, multifaceted discipline engaged in the exploration of a remarkably multicultural part of the world—the ancient Mediterranean—from early pre-history to Late Antiquity.

Our goal is to fully understand the cultures of ancient Greece and Rome, in the context of the wider Mediterranean basin—an area of religious, ethnic, linguistic, and cultural diversity. As a deliberate strategy, Classical scholarship engages with literature, drama, art, politics, philosophy, archaeology, and history. We are therefore inherently interdisciplinary and inclusive in our approach to understanding the cultures of ancient Greece and Rome as completely as possible.

south face, Erichtheion

At the same time, we are keenly aware of the role that Classical culture and the scholarship that surrounds it has played in the production of modern institutions, forms of power, and aesthetic standards in the modern West.  We regard it as our particular challenge to both recognize the enduring value of the cultural productions of ancient Greece and Rome and to question their deployment in the modern world. By studying ancient Greece and Rome in all their complexity, we can better understand—and critique—the structures of power that have claimed them as ancestors.

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Upcoming Classics Events

Classics News

Griffin Nosanchuk.

Teaching in the New Normal: Translation Symposium

April 26, 2020
These days, the classroom has taken on new meaning for both faculty and students at Oberlin. In this edition of Teaching in the New Normal, Professor Kirk Ormand describes how this year’s Translation Symposium looked different than in years past.
students in a Zoom meeting screenshot.

Teaching in the New Normal: Professor Drew Wilburn

April 14, 2020
These days, the classroom has taken on new meaning for both faculty and students at Oberlin. In this edition of Teaching in the New Normal, Wilburn explains how an activity in one of his courses took on new meaning during this time of transition.
A an stands in front of a movie screen with the words of the screen on his face and body.

This Week in Photos: January 22

January 22, 2020
In this photo series, we explore the art of cinema storytelling; go to an entrepreneurial boot camp; get intense with strings and Greek; go back to high school in Berkeley; stop by the freezer section in Kim’s Grocery & Carryout; get involved with dark matter; learn R for SPSS; join a dance class; design an archeological exhibit; get cozy with a wild beast; and much more.

Classics Facilities

Art Library

Clarence Ward Art Library

A visual feast for those who love art and the creative process, the Clarence Ward Art Library has more than 100,000 books, exhibition catalogs, and bound periodicals, as well as about 250 journals.
King Building

King Building

King Building is the main classroom building for social sciences, humanities, math, and computer science classes.