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Instructor: James Lesher. This course meets TR 9:30 – 10:45 a.m. in CW 103.

The goal of this course is to gain a detailed understanding of Plato’s philosophical and literary masterpiece, The Symposium, and its influence on later artists and writers. The first part of the course will be devoted to gaining a detailed understanding of the Symposium. In the second part of the course we will explore critical responses to Plato’s ‘theory of love’. In the third part of the course we will explore connections between Plato’s Symposium and Plotinus’ Enneads, Ficino’s De Amore, Castiglione’s The Courtier, Botticelli’s “Primavera” and “Birth of Venus,” the poetry of Percy Bysshe Shelley, Thomas Mann’s Death in Venice, Jonathan Miller’s “The Drinking Party,” and Trask’s and Mitchell’s “Hedwig and the Angry Inch.”