The Man in the Sky

The Man in the Sky
By Aisha Daffeh

Every day was the same for Isaac.

He woke up, tossing his tattered gray duvet onto his bed. He stood in front of the mirror in his minuscule bedroom, delicately putting on his work uniform, which consisted of a T-shirt and brown khakis. He’d walk out into the hallway, taking note of the various parts of his house that needed repair—leaky roof, the broken bathroom door knob, the shattered floorboard…

In the Courts: The Rhetoric of Athens and Today

In the Courts: The Rhetoric of Athens and Today
Rhetoric’s Precedence over Evidence in Classical Athenian Courts
By Lauren Davis

I. Introduction
To many modern audiences, the charm of Ancient Greece lies in its image as an overflowing fountain of artistry and expression, the pantheon they worshipped a lingering memory of their magnificence. Their culture is, in some aspects, timeless—American architecture, literature, and language all a reflection of this ancient world. Yet even this highly romanticized view of our predecessors barely begins to skim the surface of how deeply embedded the arts were in daily life, particularly in the Classical Athens of the 5th and 4th centuries B.C.E….

The Hero’s Journey

The Hero’s Journey
By Lily Nesvold

​​As a modern, musical interpretation of Virgil’s Aeneid, “The Hero’s Journey” is an instrumental track created using GarageBand, a digital audio workstation, combined with Renderforest, a music visualizer service. I created this piece as my final project for CLST-143, “Great Books of Greece and Rome,” taught by Professor Alison Traweek…

Meet the Penn Classical Studies Class of 2021!

Meet the Penn Classical Studies Class of 2021!
By Elizabeth Vo-Phamhi

Every year, we here at Discentes have sadly bid another graduating class farewell while happily celebrating their achievements by featuring some of our newest Classical Studies and Ancient History alumni. The recently-graduated Class of 2021 is unique—they completed their entire senior year remotely, yet they excelled.

Carro cura carere

Carro cura carere
Re-evaluating the Roman Carrus
By David Picker-Kille

I. Introduction
As an aspiring classical archaeologist with an interest in Roman land transport, the recent groundbreaking discovery of the four-wheeled “chariot” at the Villa Giuliana north of Pompeii has highlighted for me the presence of an issue of translation between English and Italian that parallels a phenomenon of increasing influence and focus within my research of ancient Roman vehicle types and their corresponding Latin terminology…

Why Classics?

“Why Classics?”
By Olivia Wells

When people ask me what I’m studying, I often find that they don’t understand what I mean by “classics,” and in the rare case that they do, they sometimes can’t wrap their head around why I’d want to major in it.

Sadly, it’s not hard to see why I, as well as other classics majors, often find ourselves defending our discipline. Once regarded as a foundational precept of humanities, classical studies has since seen a decline in popularity over the past century…

Either Language

Either Language
By Jinna Han

What was that word again? It’s there just at the edge of my mind, hovering, waiting, expecting me to be able to grasp it while I’m still too busy stumbling over the other words that are falling out of my mouth in a room full of people who wait and listen. It’s a lot of pressure, getting these words just right. Every day is a performance, and not just in English, either…

The Wealth of the Countryside

Virgil, Georgics 2.458-542
Translated by Sara Chopra

In this final passage of Book 2 of his Georgics, Virgil presents his reader with an ode to the farmer, extolling the virtues of country living. However, as much as these closing lines celebrate the joys of an agrarian lifestyle, they equally express the poet’s distaste for the corruption that has taken hold of his city, Rome…

“When You Set Out for Ithaka…”

“When You Set Out for Ithaka…”
By Margaret Dunn

When I was ten years old, my grandfather gave me a copy of Mary Pope Osborne’s Tales from the Odyssey as a birthday present. He was an English professor, so gifts such as this one were not uncommon. Every year I’d receive a new paperback or two, plowing through each title so that I could answer his questions at Christmas…