Schools Dust off Classical Studies

By Clara Germani, writer of The Christian Science Monitor | The Christian Science Monitor, July 16, 1990 | Go to article overview
Save to active project

Schools Dust off Classical Studies


Clara Germani, writer of The Christian Science Monitor, The Christian Science Monitor


A NATIONAL renaissance of classical studies - focusing on Greek and Latin culture - has found special meaning for students at Shepherd Park Elementary School here.

Readings of Homer during the school year have given them perspective on their own fallen local hero, Mayor Marion Barry. The urban school students, 95 percent of whom are black, have been exposed to daily scandal reports of the mayor's drug trial.

Though shy sixth-grader Alison Harris speaks mostly of the entertaining hold the classics have had on her, she's not unaware of modern applications.

"It's like real life," she says of the Odyssey's lotus-eaters, who were so addicted to the plant they never wanted to leave their island or think of anything else but the sweet plant. "They sat around all day and ate it and didn't do anything," says Alison, owlish in her glasses and dry observations.

Associated with elitism and the age of hickory-stick educational practices, classical studies were nearly abandoned during the 1960s and 1970s. But they are finding new relevance today.

This summer, hundreds of schoolteachers are involved in training institutes in everything from mythology to Aristotle's theory of science. They are part of the classical renaissance that includes such examples as these:

- Many grade schools are adopting Socratic seminars to enliven civics, reading, math, and science studies.

- Whole schools have been turned over to classical Greek-style education, incorporating physical education with broad-based humanities studies.

"It's all a part of a single phenomenon," says Richard LaFleur, head of the classics department at the University of Georgia, Athens. "It reflects a moving away from the fragmentation of the '60s and '70s to an integrated approach to tradition and heritage."

Foreign-language study, and particularly the study of "dead" civilizations and languages, was deemed irrelevant, he says. For example, high school Latin language enrollment in the United States declined 80 percent between 1962 and 1976, from 700,000 to 150,000, he says. The number of Latin teachers registered by the American Classical League (ACL) declined from 6,000 to 3,000 in the same period.

But the return to classical studies is bolstered by two factors, says Mr.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Schools Dust off Classical Studies
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.