'Afro Greeks':

The Reception of Greco-Roman Antiquity in the Anglophone Caribbean


Summer Term 2018 / Thurs 12-14 /  CAS 1.812

Master ALCM 4,7 (Transcultural Anglophone Studies I, II)

Master “Moving Cultures” MCTE 3

BAES 3.3. (Nelk)

L3 FW3 (“Literature und Sprache”)



This seminar addresses the presence of Greco-Roman antiquity in Anglophone literature of the Caribbean. We will study works by V.S. Naipaul, Austin Clarke, and Derek Walcott in order to understand the significance of intertextual references to ancient ‘classics’ in contemporary Caribbean writing – how these are bound up with the history of slavery, colonialism and colonial education on the one hand and ideas of classicism and world literature on the other. The seminar’s focus is on Derek Walcott’s different ways of rewriting the Odyssey, both in his epic poem Omeros (1990) and in his play The Odyssey. A Stage Version (1993).



·       Derek Walcott’s Omeros [1990]: New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux 1992; ISBN: 978-0374523503

·       Derek Walcott: The Odyssey. A Stage Version (or: A Play) 1993. New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux; ISBN: 978-0374523879

·       Optional: For those who want to read the Odyssey (again) in a fresh English translation:
Homer: The Odyssey (transl. Emily Wilson). New York: W.W. Norton 2017 (ISBN: 978-0393356250)

Other texts will be made available via MOODLE