Have you ever pondered what it means to be human nowadays? Considering the fact that this question is extremely vague and difficult to be answered, a good first try would be to study what it really means to be a hero in ancient Greek times. This particular issue seems to be the leading motivation of persistent Harvard Professor and researcher Gregory Nagy, who has been working passionately for 37 plus years on “The Ancient Greek Hero in 24 Hours” (HeroesX), an introduction to the literature and heroes of ancient Greece, a part of which you can now enjoy on December 4 in Boston.
During “The Ancient Greek Hero in 24 Hours (Hours 22-24): Plato and Beyond,” the project’s fifth module, visitors will have the opportunity to put the real hero in the epicenter of their philosophical dialogue, going through Plato’s “Apology of Socrates” and “Phaedo.” And by giving special attention to the marvelous ancient Greek verbal art (through poetry and literature), they will try to challenge the whole impression that Socrates was a hero. The main purpose of this meeting is to eventually fathom some of our world’s everlasting truths, concluding that the hero should no longer pertain to some extraordinary human.
Nagy, Professor in Classical Greek Literature and Comparative Literature at Harvard University, is the director of the whole experience. His project, being a “product” of a meticulous selection from over 250 plus passages from Greek masterpieces, includes texts from Homer’s “Odyssey,” Aeschylus’ tragedies, Sophocles, Euripides, Sappho’s and Pindar’s songs, Plato’s dialogues, and Philostratus’ “Heroes.” Dating back from the eighth century BC through the third century AD, all texts are translated to English, giving the opportunity to people from different backgrounds to follow what it really means to be human today.