Sunday, October 14, 2012

The Greeks, Qohelet and the Importance of Beginning Again


Zeno,  Founder of Stoicism
Epicure, espouser of aesthetic appreciation

This integration unit is for my AP English Literature class, which will cover the Western literary tradition. We're beginning with Medea and excerpts from the Odyssey (older posts include assignments the class is already undertaking). Below is the first of a series of comparisons the class will be making between the Torah and works from the Western canon. Many of the ideas in the comparison are taken from Harold Fisch's wonderful book, Poetry with a Purpose: Biblical Poetics and Interpretation, which Professor Simeon Chavel recommended.

After students read the following paper, they'll be asked to look for prayers in any weekday or holiday liturgy that raise consciousness of the fact that God is creator and asks us to participate in creation with him by exhorting us to build a more just and good world. Students can look for that theme in the arrangement of prayers or for the leitmotif words we studied in the unit below and analyze how those words are used to remind one of the covenantal agreement.
Greeks, Qohelet and Genesis




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