VCE Ancient History Workshop
THE PELOPONNESIAN WAR
This workshop will contextualise the Peloponnesian War, and introduce students to a nuanced investigation of this defining conflict. Students will gain insight into the ideas, people and actions that determined the nature, causes and consequences of the war. Students will engage in an open Socratic seminar where they will interpret ancient artefacts (war artefacts, sculpture and pottery) and texts (ancient and modern), to generate and investigate key questions about; 1) the nature of the Peloponnesian War, 2) campaign strategies (the significance of Athenian naval power and Spartan hoplite supremacy), and 3) the Sicilian Expedition as a key turning point of the war.
During the second part of the workshop, students will be organised into a debate. They will use provided knowledge processing tools and ancient rhetorical, debating and persuasive techniques (such as epideictic, judicial and deliberative oratory) to discuss and present arguments about defining Peloponnesian War policies and decisions made by figures such as; Pericles, Alcibiades, Nicias, Lysander, Cleon and Brasidas. Using ancient rhetorical techniques will allow students to structure ideas, knowledge and evidence in a unique way, allowing them to; 1) enter the minds of these pivotal individuals, 2) assess the impact of personal motives, values and attitudes of leaders 3) make connections between the socio-political and economic undercurrents of the war, and 4) interrogate primary and secondary sources.
Ideal for: Year 12 students (Unit 3-4 Ancient Histories Area of study 2 Greece: People in power, societies in crisis)
Duration: Part I – 1 hour, Part II – 50 min (with 25-minute break) | Total time: 2 hours 15min
Delivery: On-site at the Hellenic Museum
Classroom capacity: 25 students
Cost: $19 per student