Below you’ll find descriptions of the work I’ll be expecting you to do this semester. Assignments that have more specific instructions are linked below and in the menu above.

  • Reading: The most important thing you’ll do is to prepare assigned readings for each day of class. Most days this will include some reading from Plautus, in English, Latin, or both, and sometimes some contemporary works of scholarship as well (always in English).
    • English: When you’re reading in English, I’ll expect you to read carefully, thoughtfully, and critically, and to come to class prepared for detailed discussions about the content of the reading. You should equip yourself to do that with notes of some kind, either as annotations on the reading itself, in a notebook, or in whatever form works best for you. I’ve kept the English reading assignments short in this class, because my intention is for you to do all of the reading and to do it thoughtfully.
    • Latin: Our goal in reading Latin in this course is to learn to read Plautus fluently, and to use our Latin skills in order to enjoy and interpret the plays we’re reading. Please do not simply write out a translation; instead, produce whatever notes, annotations, and other preparations you need to talk through the text together in class. Even if I ask you to translate in class, I’ll expect that to be a slow, collaborative process – I’m not interested in a polished translation you wrote out the night before. I welcome mistakes and questions; Latin is hard, but we’re in this together. For full details of how I recommend you prepare your Latin readings, see Prof. Mulligan’s Guide to Preparing a Reading Assignment.
  • Scholarship Presentation: Each of you will lead class for about half an hour once during the semester. You’ll guide us through a conversation about a work of scholarship, either Richlin’s Slave Theater or Moore’s Theater of Plautus. You’ll summarize what you read, and host a conversation about it.
  • Scene Performance: With a small group of other students, you’ll perform a scene in Latin from one of the two main comedies we’re reading, Poenulus and Amphitruo. You’ll decide whether to use masks or costumes, how to distribute parts, and other performance matters. Then, you’ll lead us through a conversation about your performance.
  • Process Surveys: Periodically throughout the semester, you’ll be asked to complete brief process surveys evaluating the work you’ve been doing. You’ll reflect on what you’ve learned, on ways you could improve your work, on accomplishments and on hopes for the future. You’ll be invited to solicit specific kinds of feedback from me, and to assess your overall performance in the course so far.
  • Letter of Assessment: At the end of the semester, I’ll ask you to write a substantial letter of assessment, reflecting on your work over the course of the class. As with your process surveys, you’ll consider what you did and did not accomplish this semester, your successes and your missed opportunities, the work you did and the work that’s left to do. I’ll ask you to assign yourself a final grade, and in consultation with you, we’ll then settle your grade for the course.