The Glory that was Greece

Ref: C2339989

During the term, you will learn about the archaeological, historical and epigraphic evidence for Classical Greece from 414 – 386 BC with particular stress on major political and social developments of the Spartan hegemony. This will include an analysis of the final defeat of Athens in the Peloponnesian War after 411, and the causes of the Spartan domination, and reasons for its continuation including the developing Greek relationship with the Persian Empire, including the March of the Ten Thousand. We will go on to look at how the defeat of Athens impacted upon its political and social life, but we will also continue to observe the changing nature of polis life in general, going on to explore the evidence for the revival of Athens and the gradual undermining of Spartan authority during the Corinthian War. You will be made familiar with the characters of Xenophon, King Agesilaus, and the importance of Plato for western philosophy.

Course aim

The course aims to give a detailed and wide-ranging account of ancient Greek society and civilisation and its impact, focussing this term on the period from 414 - 386 BC

Do I need any particular skills or experience?

  • This course is suitable for beginners and improvers

By the end of the course I should be able to:

  • Describe the general course of military and political events in the Peloponnesian War 411 – 404 BC
  • Evaluate the key features of the later career of Sokrates and his importance as a figure for Western Civilisation
  • Provide reasons for the continued hegemony of Sparta after 404 BC
  • Provide an outline to the circumstances that caused the imposition of the King's Peace in 386 BC

How will I be taught?

  • The WEA tutor will use a range of different teaching and learning methods and encourage you and the group to be actively involved in your learning

What kind of feedback can I expect?

  • A range of informal activities will be used by the tutor to see what you are learning which may include quizzes, question and answer, small projects and discussion
  • You will have opportunities to discuss your progress with your tutor
  • You will be encouraged to share your work with the group and discuss your learning
  • You will be encouraged to consider other students work and give your opinions and suggestions

What else do I need to know?

  • Nothing else is needed
  • It would be helpful if you had access to the internet (Mobile phone, tablet or computer at home or through a library etc.)

Pre-course work, reading and information sources

  • No pre reading is required but research on the subject on the internet or in the library may be helpful
  • Penguin Historical Atlas of Ancient Greece Robert Markot, Penguin 1996 Exploring the World of the Ancient Greeks John Camp & Elizabeth Fisher, Thames & Hudson 2002

What can I do next?

  • Progress to another WEA course

Download full course information sheet

The Glory that was Greece


As a registered charity, and to meet our funders’ requirements, we need to check a few things with you before you book. Please could we ask that you check the list below to ensure you meet our basic criteria:

  • You are paying the standard fee (with a credit or debit card) or you are on any of the qualifying benefits
  • You have a valid email address so that you can receive confirmation of your booking
  • You have been resident in the UK, EU or EEA for the last 3 years
  • You are aged 19 years or older on 1st September 2018
  • You have read and accept our standard terms and conditions

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