• Offered by School of Literature, Languages and Linguistics
  • ANU College ANU College of Arts and Social Sciences
  • Course subject Classics
  • Areas of interest Archaeology, Classics and Ancient History, History, Latin, Ancient Greek
  • Academic career PGRD
  • Course convener
    • Dr Estelle Strazdins
  • Mode of delivery In Person
  • Offered in First Semester 2024
    See Future Offerings

At a time when Classics is more relevant than ever to contemporary social, cultural, historical, and political debates, its pervasive impact sometimes goes unrecognised. This course probes the most relevant and current issues of the discipline that are fundamental to its future direction and active in shaping contemporary attitudes to the Greek and Roman past. The course addresses big questions through current controversies. A 2023 Netflix documentary on Cleopatra VII cast a black actor in the titular role in the face of internet outrage, but what were ancient Greek and Roman attitudes to race, is this casting actually far-fetched, and why does the public care so much? The National War Memorial in Canberra possesses artefacts collected by Australian troops on assignment in Greece, Turkey, and Egypt: are these simply souvenirs or is there more to it; who should own these objects and why do people invest powerful emotions in material things? Computer games like Assassin's Creed Odyssey reconstruct visions of classical cities like Athens, but how accurate are these representations and why does it matter? How can we as modern scholars access the voices and experiences of marginalised peoples in the ancient world? The Athenian acropolis proudly displays its 5th century classical phase for tourists and scholars alike, but 150 years ago it was an eclectic combination of buildings and remains from the Mycenaean period to the nineteenth century: why promote one chronological phase over another; what is lost and what is gained; who makes these decisions and why does it matter? In recent years in nations like the US, UK, and Australia, controversial figures of the past who have been celebrated with monuments have become lightning rods for debates about contemporary identity and values: what was the impulse for this statue habit of modern societies and what does it mean to raise or remove a monument? Greek theatre as therapy has had a dramatic and positive effect on displaced peoples in refugee communities this century: why do plays like Euripides' Trojan Women still resonate so profoundly and how does the experience of performing this material help the emotional and psychological lives of individuals? Classics Now! allows students to sink their teeth into these questions and more.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

  1. engage critically with current issues in the field of Classics to a level appropriate of postgraduate study;
  2. identify and interpret the many manifestations of Greek and Roman antiquity's influence on contemporary society, culture, and politics with the nuance expected of postgraduate training;
  3. understand and be able to explain to others the relevance and impact of Classics to contemporary society, culture, and politics to a depth indicative of postgraduate study; and
  4. analyse critically and evaluate ancient evidence and its contemporary reception with the sophistication, sensitivity, and objectivity that is expected of postgraduate engagement with such content.

Indicative Assessment

  1. seminar participation (10) [LO 1,2,3,4]
  2. seminar presentation (30 mins) (10) [LO 1,2,3,4]
  3. seminar paper (2000 words) (10) [LO 1,2,3,4]
  4. poster (c. 1000 words) (20) [LO 1,2,3,4]
  5. research project (6000 words) (50) [LO 1,2,3,4]

The ANU uses Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. While the use of Turnitin is not mandatory, the ANU highly recommends Turnitin is used by both teaching staff and students. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the ANU Online website.


260 hours of total student learning time made up from:

a) 18 hours of contact: 12 hours of classes, 6 hours of Classics research seminars

b) 242 hours of independent student research, reading, and writing

Inherent Requirements

Not applicable

Requisite and Incompatibility

To enrol in this course you must be enrolled in a MA course and have gained the permission of the course coordinator. You are not able to enrol in this course if you have completed the equivalent 4000-level course.

Prescribed Texts

Not required. List of readings to be made available through the library and/or on Wattle.

Assumed Knowledge

Completion of a cognate undergraduate major.


Tuition fees are for the academic year indicated at the top of the page.  

Commonwealth Support (CSP) Students
If you have been offered a Commonwealth supported place, your fees are set by the Australian Government for each course. At ANU 1 EFTSL is 48 units (normally 8 x 6-unit courses). More information about your student contribution amount for each course at Fees

Student Contribution Band:
Unit value:
12 units

If you are a domestic graduate coursework student with a Domestic Tuition Fee (DTF) place or international student you will be required to pay course tuition fees (see below). Course tuition fees are indexed annually. Further information for domestic and international students about tuition and other fees can be found at Fees.

Where there is a unit range displayed for this course, not all unit options below may be available.

12.00 0.25000
Domestic fee paying students
Year Fee
2024 $8160
International fee paying students
Year Fee
2024 $12000
Note: Please note that fee information is for current year only.

Offerings, Dates and Class Summary Links

ANU utilises MyTimetable to enable students to view the timetable for their enrolled courses, browse, then self-allocate to small teaching activities / tutorials so they can better plan their time. Find out more on the Timetable webpage.

The list of offerings for future years is indicative only.
Class summaries, if available, can be accessed by clicking on the View link for the relevant class number.

First Semester

Class number Class start date Last day to enrol Census date Class end date Mode Of Delivery Class Summary
4078 19 Feb 2024 26 Feb 2024 05 Apr 2024 24 May 2024 In Person View

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