In this course we trace an important, recurrent theme in the Western tradition, in which journey into the underworld, or katabasis, is closely linked to the encounters with the dead, or nekyiai. Each variation on that theme represents a way of asking, How might we respond to the fact of mortality, of death, in the immortal fictions of literature and art? Centering our study around the influential depiction of the underworld in Virgil's great epic, the Aeneid, we consider a wide range of authors and texts. (Offered every other year).
Approaches to Creation and Analysis, The Interdisciplinary Clusters, The Capacities