Hi 214: Classical Mythology
Midterm Examination Essay Topics
Guidelines: 50% of the examination
grade will be based on essays you write on two of the following topics.
You will find out at the examination which questions have been selected. Prepare
your answers carefully in advance, but remember that no notes or drafts may
be brought to the examination. Each essay should be:
Write in complete sentences, and organize your points in
sure to address all the topics in the question.
documented. Back up your points with specific
examples. I would like to hear not only what you know but
also how you know it.
These questions do not have right-or-wrong answers. You
have to present an hypothesis. Show me why it is more
believable than alternatives.
What is a Greek myth and what
function(s) did myths have in Greek society? Write your
own definition of a myth; then show how the definition
helps to elucidate a particular myth of your choosing;
finally, point out the strengths and weaknesses of your
Compare and contrast the chief
male divinity with the chief female divinity in each of
the three generations of gods: Ouranos & Gaia, Kronos
& Rhea, Zeus & Hera. What is constant, what
changes in the relationships between the males and the
females? Assuming that one function of myths is to
validate social institutions, speculate about the lessons
a Greek audience would have drawn from the stories of
How is sacrifice represented in
the myths we have read? What connection is there between
sacrifice and the situation of humans in the world?
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