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Classical Civilization A Level at Wanstead High School

Course description

Classical Civilisation involves learning about the history, art, architecture and literature of the ancient world. (Greek and Roman)

Year 12:

Unit 1a: The World of the Hero – Homer’s Iliad
The Iliad tells the story of the legendary heroes Achilles, Hector and the Trojan War. Homer was revered to almost godlike status by the Greeks and a study of his works is seen as essential to an understanding of the Classical World. Students will investigate the literary techniques used to develop the story, characterisation and themes. They will also use the text to investigate the historical context of the story and the social values held by the Bronze Age Greeks.

Unit 2: Culture and the Arts – Imperial Image
The Emperor Augustus reportedly said that he had found Rome ‘of brick and left it of marble’. Augustus was not only the architect of the city, but it’s imperial system. This module will investigate the different aspects of Augustus’ carefully crafted image that enabled him to not only become the first emperor of the Roman Empire, but hold onto that power against all the odds.

Year 13:

Unit 1b: The World of the Hero – Virgil’s Aeneid
Virgil’s Aeneid takes up the story of the Trojan War after the fall of Troy and follows the journey of the Trojan hero Aeneas as he flees his burning city. Unlike Homer, Virgil was Roman whose patron was the emperor Augustus. Students will not only study the literary content of the story, but also investigate the political motivations behind this poem and the symbolism within it. (Students will sit a 2 hour 20 minute paper worth 100 marks combining Unit 1a and 1b)

Unit 3: Beliefs and Ideas – Greek Religion
Religion was an integral part of Greek identity and was closely connected to the wellbeing and safety of both the individual and the state. In this module, students will investigate Greek beliefs and mythology, the role of religion in society, specific rites and rituals, and the rising conflict between traditional religious values and new philosophical ideas.(Students will sit a 1 hour 45 minute paper worth 75 marks)

All A level Classics exams will be sat at the end of Year 13. Unit 1 is work 40% and Units 2 and 3 are work 30% each of the final A Level.

Entry requirements

Grade A*-B (6-9) in English or A*-B History GCSE is necessary. Students must also be motivated and able to research work independently.

Future opportunities

This subject can give students an excellent background in either history or literature. It also introduces new ideas such as archaeology and philosophy. Future careers could be in the media, law, archaeology, education or publishing.

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Wanstead High School directly.

Last updated date: 31 March 2017
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