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Sydnie C

- Research Program Mentor

PhD candidate at Yale University

Expertise

Classics, Ancient Greek, Women in Antiquity, Greco-Roman Mythology, Magic and Witchcraft in Antiquity

Bio

Χαῖρε/Salve (Hello)! I'm Sydnie, and I grew up in Los Angeles, California. I've always had such a fascination with the literature and mythology of Ancient Greece and Rome, so it felt natural for me to major in Classics at Cornell University. After I finished my undergraduate degree there in 2020, I started a PhD program in Classical Philology at Yale University. The "Philology" part of Classical Philology means I focus on reading texts, though I also love looking at artifacts and traveling around Greece visiting archaeological sites too. Some of my broader interests within antiquity include magic and witchcraft, cross-cultural interaction, the roles of women, and tragic performance. When I'm not busy readings Greek plays or Latin poetry, I like to play music, go on hikes, and learn new things. I love finding connections between the past and present and reading books inspired by mythology. I also absolutely love teaching and helping people develop their own passions--I often find that teaching others is when I learn the most myself!

Project ideas

Project ideas are meant to help inspire student thinking about their own project. Students are in the driver seat of their research and are free to use any or none of the ideas shared by their mentors.

Who's the Real Hero of the Odyssey?

In this project, we'll read Homer's Odyssey and discuss what a "hero" was to the Ancient Greeks and how that definition is similar or different to a "hero" today. Then, we'll discuss all the mortals and gods who play a key role in Odysseus' journey home, and it will be up to you to decide who the real hero is. This project can be done by reading the Odyssey entirely in English translation, or, if you have prior knowledge of Ancient Greek, can be done by incorporating select key passages of the original text into our weekly readings. The final project for this could take the form of an extended essay, translation work with an accompanying thematic commentary, a youtube video, or podcast.

Writing Tragedy

In this project, we'll discuss Greek tragedy in its historical context. We'll read select plays of Aeschylus, Sophocles, and Euripides and explore what made their plays so enticing to ancient and modern audiences. Then, you will write your own version of a Greek tragedy. This project can be done by reading the Odyssey entirely in English translation, or, if you have prior knowledge of Ancient Greek, can be done by incorporating select key passages of the original Greek into our weekly readings. If you have prior experience in Greek composition, your own version of a Greek tragedy can be done in Greek. The final project for this could take the form of your written tragedy or a video or podcast performance of your written work.

Languages I know

Ancient Greek (reading/writing and spoken), Latin (reading), Sanskrit (reading)

Teaching experience

I have mentored K-12 students for over 4 years. I work with them to solidify their reading comprehension and writing skills. My goal is to make learning fun, so I always choose texts that are interesting to them. Many of my students love Greek and Roman mythology, so I bring in passages that are directly translated from the original (no summaries here!) for us to discuss and write about. Sometimes, I even teach my students some Greek and Latin along the way.

Credentials

Education

Cornell University
BA Bachelor of Arts
Classics
Yale University
PhD Doctor of Philosophy candidate
Classics

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