Starting this fall, students can learn to read the works of Aristotle and Plato in their original form with the re-introduction of the Greek language into the foreign languages department.
“Today we cannot survive in this world without a foreign language,” said Giuliana Fazzion, the foreign languages and literatures department head.
Following the retirement of the Greek professor in the early ’90s, Greek disappeared from JMU. It will be reintroduced by Dr. Michael Allain, who taught the 101 course from ’86-’88.
Fazzion said the reinstatement of Greek into the course catalog was a collaborative effort of the departments of philosophy and religion, history, and foreign languages, literatures and cultures.
The department of philosophy and religion wanted to expand the language opportunities in its classical studies minor from just Latin, according to Fazzion. Greek is the basis for understanding the most influential thinkers including Aristotle, Plato, Socrates and Epicurus.
Greek 101 will be offered in the fall followed by the addition of Greek 102 in spring ’09.
“Students will have the chance to ‘meet’ Plato and all the great Greek authors,” Fazzion said. “They have been the basis of our civilization.”