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Why should we want to study the Ancient Greeks?
For Donald Kagan, historian and classicist at Yale University, the answer is simple: “It’s just terribly interesting.”
He offers a less subjective reason, however, in his introduction to a free 24-lecture series, “Introduction to Ancient Greek History.”
“I believe that it comes from the Ancient Greeks’ position as the most significant starting point of Western Civilization, which is the culture that most powerfully shapes not only the West, but most of the world today.”
As with other Open Yale Courses, you can take the course as a Yale undergraduate would and did – a syllabus is included with a list of books for the course (Herodotus, Plutarch and Thucydides are included, in translation). The lectures themselves were recorded in Fall of 2007.