Friday, December 7, 2007

If You Give an Honors Student an Oral Exam...

I should be studying for my Honors final but my classmates are just too bloggable.

We divvied up the questions for the final on Tuesday and everybody brought back their answer on Thursday (yesterday). Now I am typing them all out and I can't help but laugh at some of them.

For instance, we gave J. a question on philosophy. We got 2 pages of 10-point font back. My study guide needs a study guide. Moral of this story: Never give a philosophy question to a Platonist.

Another question, given to a classmate I shall refer to as Mr. President (even Dr. S calls him this): Is Thucydides' Peloponnesian War a tragedy? Mr. President, wanting the rest of us to have a bit of selection, gave the question 2 answers: First, he argued against it; and then he did an about-face and argued for it. Part of his against question goes like this: "Thucydides’ Peloponnesian War is not a tragedy according to Aristotle’s definition....First of all, the book is too long and convoluted for one to keep the entire story in mind (1451a5)".

ADDED ** Q: In what way is the Alcestis a tragedy?
A: (in part)...One fears for and pities Alcestis' poor children (left with their incompetent father)...**

This is what happens when you take 15 people who are too smart for their own good and set them loose in the Classics.

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