Why the Classics Matter

Monday, September 16, 2013

Classicist Mary Beard talks about Greek and Roman history and why it still matters. In Confronting the Classics, she explores our rich classical heritage—from Greek drama to Roman jokes, from Alexander the Great to the great writers Thucydides, Cicero.


Mary Beard
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Comments [6]

Terry Walsh from Bury St. Edmunds

No, Ed, there were only two, the Greek (or Greco-Roman and the Celtic. We do not know enough yet about the Pre-Columbian cultures of the 'far' West.

Sep. 19 2013 02:29 AM
Keira from Manhattan

Terrific guest, thanks! I look forward to reading her book.

Sep. 16 2013 07:50 PM
Ed from Larchmont

How about secularists trying to take over the country? (Which is one metaphysics.)

Sep. 16 2013 01:23 PM
Jonathan from South Carolina

Its interesting to note that one of the major video game releases of the past few months was "Rome2: Total War" which tasks the player with taking control of one of a number of civilizations in the ancient west. I'm always surprised at the depth of knowledge that players have of the time period. I would argue that the classics are very much alive.

Sep. 16 2013 12:57 PM
jgarbuz from Queens

To Ed

Good you said, "in the West" because there was a helluva lot going on the East, and even in extreme West, i.e., in the Western Hemisphere now called the Americas. Naturally, those of us here from "the West" give preference to the study of our most immediate cultural and religious influences that have affected us, but we do need to pay a bit more attention to what was going on in other great civilizations around the globe that our most of our ancestors had little contact with. The "Tower of Babel" is going back up. The human race is slowly but surely reintegrating regardless if whether some of us like it or not.

Sep. 16 2013 11:56 AM
Ed from Larchmont

At the time of Christ there were three great civilizations in the West - the Hebrew, the Greek, and the Roman. The modern world is a development of these three, so they are vital to our self-understanding.

Sep. 16 2013 08:04 AM

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