On my dad, “MC Hammer”, and Dikaiopolis

Before I begin this post, let me recommend an excellent video about Aristophanes’ historical context that focuses on Acharnians and Knights: I can’t find the name of the guy who made this video, but he knows what he’s talking about and has a great intuitive sense of where Aristophanes came from and what he wasContinue reading “On my dad, “MC Hammer”, and Dikaiopolis”

On “ecoclassicism”; or, how I started caring about nature and ancient Greece

I’ve been thinking a lot recently about how we humans come to care about the things we care about, whatever those may be: ancient monuments, endangered species, books, languages, family members, gender norms…. I was already thinking about that before I moved to Cairo last August, but living in a place where people care aboutContinue reading “On “ecoclassicism”; or, how I started caring about nature and ancient Greece”

Can young people handle free speech?

Acharnians, Aristophanes’ first play that has survived in full, was produced at the Lenaia festival in January 425 BCE, a mere nine months after Babylonians. While the apparent aim of Acharnians is to advocate for peace–and that is indeed one of its goals–it is, I think, most fruitful to consider it first and foremost partContinue reading “Can young people handle free speech?”

Domination and Dominion: Masculinity as Conquest of Women and Nature (by Nina Lee)

Nina Lee, the author of this essay, is a Master’s Student in the Department of English and Comparative Literature at The American University in Cairo, where she currently lives. She was raised in Jacksonville, Florida, where she studied French and Spanish Literature. Her academic interests include anti-colonialism, gender studies, ecofeminism, anti-racism, generational trauma, and popularContinue reading “Domination and Dominion: Masculinity as Conquest of Women and Nature (by Nina Lee)”

Ten theses on why Aristophanes matters

“Aristophanes” is one of those ancient Greek names that is for many people I meet vaguely familiar but hard to place…you know you’ve heard it somewhere, probably read a thing or two he wrote, but what exactly? In future posts I will look in detail at who Aristophanes was, when and where he lived, andContinue reading “Ten theses on why Aristophanes matters”

Art Reflects Reality: the treatment of non-human animals in Ancient Greece, Rome, and Egypt (by Yousef Koura)

Non-human animals have been part of our lives since the beginning of time. Sometimes as sources of food, sometimes as subjects of research, and sometimes even as lifetime
companions. Examining ancient literature gives us an idea of how some ancient cultures viewed and treated these non-human animals. In this paper I mainly take a look at Aristophanes’ The Birds, Apuleius’ The Golden Ass, and The Stories of Setne Khamwas; these stories give some insight into how the Ancient Greek, Ancient Roman, and Ancient Egyptian societies, respectively, regarded non-human animals and how, in turn, they treated them. In addition to those stories, a variety of secondary sources from the fields of literature, law, and philosophy are also examined in an attempt to gain a deeper understanding of the reasoning behind each culture’s actions and ethical considerations.