Seminars for Teachers: Homer’s Iliad

Spring 2024: Odyssey (Professor Eirene Allen)

For Middle, High School, and HomeSchool Teachers. Free.

When: Mondays, February 5 (no class March 25), 7-9 PM ET (NYC).

Forum: Live classes on Zoom. (The link will be emailed to you a few days before the first class.)

Syllabus: see below.

Required texts: Homer’s Odyssey, translated by Anthony Verity

I will be using the edition translated by Anthony Verity. Other recommended translations are those by Richmond Lattimore, Peter Green, and E. V. Rieu. A. S. Kline’s translation is free to download here:

Course requirements: Participants who attend all live sessions will receive a certificate of completion of 35 hours. Participants who attend all live sessions and submit a lesson plan or a reflection paper will receive a certificate of completion of 45 hours.


Spring 2024: Odyssey Seminar

Course requirements: Attend all live sessions. Teachers will receive a certificate upon completion (35 credits for attendance alone, 45 for attendance and final written assignment).

Institute for Classics Education Website:

Spring 2024: Odyssey Seminar

The epic that inspired the road trip genre, the Odyssey is often remembered as the story of a man who took ten years to return home to his wife, fighting off sirens, nymphs, and his and his companions’ bad decisions along the way. But beneath the apparent vice and folly lies an exploration of the nature of storytelling, the limits of perseverance, the contours of faith, the inscrutability of death, and a quest to define and safeguard home.

Like the Iliad, the Odyssey is a paradox: a text of a poem composed orally in performance, an end product of a centuries-old tradition, and the beginning of a new kind of storytelling. Reading 2-3 books per week in Anthony Verity’s translation, we will explore the poem’s meanings and messages within a Homeric context and their appeal across time.

Week 1 (Feb. 5): Introducing the Odyssey

Week 2 (Feb. 12): Read books 1-3

Week 3 (Feb. 19): Read books 4-6

Week 4 (Feb. 26): Read books 7-9

Week 5 (March 4): Read Books 10-12

Week 6 (March 11): Read books 13-15

Week 7 (March 18): Read books 16-18

No class March 25

Week 8 (April 1): Read books 19-21

Week 9 (April 8): Read books 22-24

Read: Books 16, 17, & 18

Week 10 (April 15): Reception of the Odyssey