History of Ancient Greece

Course Info

HIA 320: History of Ancient Greece. 3 hours, 3 credits. In this course we will explore the beginnings of European civilization—its gradual unfolding and culmination in Greece, through examination of the key transformations of Greek culture and city-states from the Bronze Age up through the hellenization of the east by the Makedonians.

Details HIA 320-S81 (53021), Fall 2021. Crosslisted with: LEH 354-S81 (50881); HIA 720-S01 (53024). Online only. Online meetings: Thursdays 6:00 – 8:40 p.m.

Instructor Dr. Mark B. Wilson, Adjunct Assistant Professor. Email: mark.wilson@lehman.cuny.edu. Website: http://markbwilson.com. BlackBoard: link.

Office hours Before class on Thursdays from 5 to 6 p.m.; office hours are virtual (via email).


More than any other ancient culture, the world of Hellas—the Greek-speaking lands and islands of the Aegean Sea and beyond—attempted to improve and perfect society and civilization, to such an extent that Hellas became a crucible for the fundamental ideas of the “western” world, ideas that formed the bedrock for nations disseminated far and wide across continents and oceans. What made the Greek ideas about how humans relate to the world and each other so elemental? How did the peoples of Hellas evolve their unique perspective?

Specific Learning Objectives

In this course we’ll be pursuing a number of goals, including:

  • Exploration of the emergence of Greek civilization and its implications for humanity
  • Relation of the cultures and beliefs of other Eastern Mediterranean societies to those of Greece
  • Exploration of the transformation of Greek social, military, religious, and other norms from the rise of the Minoans to the Macedonian conquest of southwest Asia
  • Discussion of the relationship between the ideals of ancient Hellas and the modern Western ethos
  • Development of the skills associated with the study of history, including the interpretation of primary sources and other evidence.