Cultural Odyssey: Classics reimagined through the lens of pop culture

Cultural Odyssey: Classics reimagined through the lens of pop culture

*Please note that this course will run only if two or more students enroll.

Course Description: Embark on a captivating journey through the realms of classical art, literature, and mythology in this course designed to explore their dynamic reception within the vibrant and diverse landscapes of contemporary pop culture. The program delves into the fascinating intersections between the theories of classical reception proposed by Hardwick and Garcia-Jurado, pop culture, and the classics themselves.

Participants will engage in insightful discussions and analyses of various sources, including, but not limited to comics, movies and TV series. The course aims to outline how the contemporary world reshapes and adapts classical themes. By the end of the program, students will gain valuable insights into theoretical frameworks and analytical tools necessary to appreciate the nuanced relationship between classical and pop cultural expressions.


Level: This course welcomes enthusiasts of classical and pop culture, high school students, educators, and those intrigued by the evolving connection between classical tradition and popular culture. Prerequisites: No specific academic or classical background is required, nor is knowledge of Latin or Classical Greek necessary. We encourage a curiosity about the interplay between classical and pop culture.

Textbook: Instructor will provide materials.

Sections capped at: 5 students. If the course is sold-out, please fill out this waiting-list form.

Thursdays, 6:00-7:00p.m. U.S. Eastern Time


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Juan Forero

I am an enthusiastic and dedicated scholar proficient in Latin, Greek, and Classical Studies. During my master’s degree in Classical Studies at the Universidad de los Andes, I concentrated my efforts on understanding the influence of the Greco-Roman world on popular culture, particularly in TV media. In addition, I have actively devised innovative strategies to teach Greek and Latin vocabulary, intending to make classical languages and texts accessible, motivating, and engaging for everyone, especially beginners and newcomers to the classics field.

A significant aspect of my research explores the adaptation of classical motifs in contemporary media. I've delved into how a Colombian soap opera incorporates the siren's motif into its plot, unraveling the threads that connect ancient myths with present-day storytelling. Furthermore, my investigations extend to the reception of Helen of Troy within antiquity and in DC's Legends of Tomorrow, shedding light on the relationships between contemporary narratives, feminism, and classical themes.

Lastly, I have been focusing on outlining an analytical methodology that uses the rudiments of graph theory to create “cultural” networks, highlighting connections between the past and the modern world from a non-linear and non-chronological standpoint. I believe that network thinking could help us unveil the complex relationships between literary, iconographic, and audiovisual contemporary sources.