Part I of this tape discusses the origins of Greek humanism. I
found the generalizations of the experts rather predictable.
The video does, however, give the viewer a long, close look at some of
the best Greek scupture, including those of the Parthenon and the great
Altar at Pergamum.
I much preferred Part II (see below under The Romans).
Greek tragedy featured strong emotions: This classic play, from
one of the great Athenian playwrights of the 5th c. B.C., tells the story
of Medea who, abandoned by the hero Jason, kills their children in revenge.
Written in Athens during the endless-seeming Pelopennesian War (5th
c. B.C.), this is a satire on government, men, and women.
The second part of this tape is a Roman comedy, Miles Gloriosus (The Vainglorious Soldier).
This is a modern play about the philosopher Socrates. The playwright presents Socrates as a champion of Athenian democracy. Others would disagree. An excellent script and good performances from Peter Ustinov, Geraldine Page, and Anthony Quayle, among others.
A rather inept program about a fascinating subject: a modern
reconstruction of the warship of Ancient Greece, the trireme.
After you are tired of the "talking head" explanations, fast-forward to
the end to see the ship at work.
The Etruscans were neighbors of the early Romans, whose culture they influenced. They left behind them a few words of their language and some fascinating art. Unfortunately, this video is in the Betamax format. AV does have a Beta tape player if you are interested.
Part I of this tape discusses the origins of Greek humanism; Part II
is an excellent discussion of Roman engineering, architecture and
portrait sculpture. The viewer gets a good look at the
Pantheon, the Colosseum and the Altar of Peace of Augustus.
There are some excellent close up of Roman and pre-Roman artifacts,
but the commentary is tedious. By contrast it shows how excellent
the "Art of the Western World" video is. Save this one for a day
when you really need to know something about Roman Britain.
These two Roman cities were destroyed in the eruption of Vesuvius in
A.D. 79. Modern excavations have given us invaluable information
on Roman life during the Early Empire. It is inconvenient that this
is a 16mm film, but AV has a viewing room if you are interested.
Part one is a classic Athenian comedy (5th c. B.C.).
The second part of the tape is a Roman comedy, Miles Gloriosus (The Vainglorious Soldier).
Steve Muhlberger's Home Page.