School of Distance EducationWorld Classics in Translation3CONTENTSMODULE I :POETRY5An introduction to EpicAn introduction to Homer and Virgil touching on The Iliad, The Odyssey and The AeneidDante-The Divine Comedy -Paradiso Canto XXIA.S. Pushkin: “I Loved You”MODULE II :DRAMA37A brief introduction to world drama in generalAn introduction to Homer and Virgil, The Iliad, The Odyssey and The AeneidSophocles: Oedipus Rex.Bhasa: Karnabharam: Sudarshan Kumar SharmaMODULE III : FICTION56Herman Hesse: SiddharthaDostoevsky: Notes from Underground..
School of Distance EducationWorld Classics in Translation4
School of Distance EducationWorld Classics in Translation5MODULE : IPOETRYAn Introduction To EpicAn epic or heroic poem is a long verse narrative which deals with a serious subject. Itis told in a formal and elevated style. It is centred on heroic or quasi-divine figures onwhose action depends the fate of a tribe, a nation or the entire human race as in theinstance of John Milton’s The Paradise Lost. Epics maybe traditional or literary.Traditionalepics are called folk epics. The traditional epics were the written version of oral poemsabout a tribal or national hero during a warlike age. Among these are the Iliad andOdessey that are attributed to Homer, the Greek poet. Literary epics were composed indeliberate imitation of the traditional epics. Virgil’s Latin poem the Aeneid is of this kind.This epic later served as a model for Milton’s Paradise Lost.Some features of epicsThe hero of an epic is a figure of great national importance. In the Iliad, the hero isthe Greek warrior Achilles, who is the son of the sea nymph Thetis, and Virgil’s Aeneas isthe son of the goddesses Aphrodite.The setting of the poem is ample in scale and may be worldwide or even larger.Odysseus wanders over the Mediterranean basin and in Book XI he descends into theunderworlds as does Virgil’s Aeneas.The action involves superhuman deeds in battle such as Achilles’ feats in the TrojanWar, or a long, ordous and dangerous journey such as the wanderings of Odysseus on hisway back to his homeland in the face of opposition by some of the gods.