Modern Greek: Kazantzakis : a fin de siècle Aesthete
Fri. 11am Eastern
Course Description:Nikos Kazantzakis is primarily known for his mysterious, great character from the novel Zorba The Greek . Lesser known is his early 20th century work. When he was an Aesthete, a Decadent of Athens. Together we shall read Serpent And Lily (1906) his first diary novel, which tells the story of a pleasure and beauty - worshipping artist, who gains an obsession with the idea of death. Death, like his life, must be connected with the beauty of ancient flesh and love. He invites his mistress to pose for him, and instead spends an eternal night of passion, full of flowers; they will be found dead, suffocated amongst a magical artistic ritual, within which ancient greek art prevails. Broken Souls: (1908) a novel published initially meant to be part of a trilogy, tells the story of Orestes, a student in Paris, who attempts to write his own New Testament, initiating people into a new religionm, which contains the ancient world. He wants to urge students of the decadent Paris into an intellectual revolution. Will his intellectual mission be fulfilled? Or shall the lures of student life trick him into sensuality? How shall the influence of the antiquarian Gorgias affect Orestes? Influenced by his British, American and French contemporaries (Oscar Wilde, Joris-Karl Huysmans, Edgar Allan Poe) the lesser known Aesthete Kazantzakis aims to reformulate the ideal of Beauty and the classical world for the upcoming 20th century. This radical ideal of Beauty deriving from Classical Greece is the moving element behind the first works of Kazantzakis.
Level: This course is intended for students with experience in Classical
and Modern Greek, who want to enrich their modern Greek. English translations will be provided.
Textbook: Instructor will provide materials.
Sections capped at: 5 students. If the course is sold-out, please fill out this waiting-list form.
Photo: Courtesy of Kazantzakis Publications
Ilias Kolokouris is a Ph.D. student in Classics at the University of Athens and New College, Oxford. He holds a ptychion in Ancient Greek and Latin Literature, and a Master's Degree in teaching Modern Greek as a foreign language. His thesis was on the tragic elements found in Aristophanes’ Acharnians. Master's thesis on Politeness Strategies and Gender in Refusals to Invitation - how to teach refusals to learners of modern greek. Ilias has taught for the University of Missouri Creative Writing Seminars on Serifos, for the Modern Greek Language Centre of the University of Athens and for Paideia’s Living Greek in Greece program. He also teaches at the Living Greek in Greece Highschool Program. His current research focuses on the reception of ancient Greek literature within modern greek Aestheticism prose and British Decadence in Oxford. Translation of "Women of Homer" by Oscar Wilde into modern Greek, will be published by Kastaniotis Publications in 2020. "Modern Greek For Classicists" from Paideia Press in 2020.