Richard Sacks

life-long explorations of great works of literature

Classical Masterpieces of the Ancient Mediterranean: Homer's Odyssey



The Gerson D. Cohen Institute for Adult Jewish Learning


Three Thursday evening sessions:

January 24, February 14, March 7 at 8:00pm

Taub Room (enter at 475 W. 250th St.)

The Gerson D. Cohen Institute for Adult Jewish Learning 2018-19 Catalogue


This new series is designed to give participants an opportunity to wrestle with some of the greatest non-Jewish texts of the ancient Mediterranean world, and then compare issues these texts raise to related issues in Biblical texts. The 3-session format will involve spending the first two sessions on the classical text, with the third session focusing on comparative discussion.

This year, join Professor Richard Sacks, who has spent four decades at Columbia University teaching ancient texts such as the Iliad, Odyssey, Aeneid, Beowulf and Genesis, in a journey through the dazzling and dangerous landscapes of Homer's Odyssey. And front and center, among the many challenges with which this remarkable poem has confronted its audiences for nearly 3000 years, is the question of what the process of journeying does to us, a question very much on the mind of Genesis as it asks us to contemplate what happens to Abraham and Jacob on their extended sojourns away from home.