University Homepage
DRPS Homepage
DRPS Search
DRPS Contact
DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of History, Classics and Archaeology : Classics General

Undergraduate Course: Approaching Alexander the Great: History, Themes and Traditions (CLGE10009)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of History, Classics and Archaeology CollegeCollege of Humanities and Social Science
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 10 (Year 3 Undergraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryThis course invites students to explore the multifaceted approaches to the figure of Alexander the Great and his era (mid to late fourth century BC). We will examine his history, the pertinent themes, and contrasting traditions that place the figure in his historical context.
Course description This course invites students to examine a fascinating period of world history, namely the era of Alexander the Great, which changed the interface of several parts of Eurasia and created a long-term impact, a so-called 'Hellenistic' World. We will deploy a variety of approaches to explain and situate the figure and his achievements in the historical context.

You will not only follow him on his impressive campaign against the Persian empire (334-323 BC), but also explore a variety of topics in cultural, social, and political history that was affected by him and the people surrounding him. We will look at numerous ethnicities (Greeks, Macedonians, Persians, Egyptians, Indians, etc.), administration, economics, gender, religion, and warfare among other topics. You will get the opportunity to interpret a rich variety of evidence that we have from his period, literary texts, epigraphical evidence, material culture, to get a better sense of him and the people that made his story 'great'. You will acquire the tools to disentangle the stories, legends, and myths surrounding one of antiquity's greatest enigmas.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements A pass in Ancient History 2A and 2B or at the discretion of the course organiser.
Information for Visiting Students
Pre-requisitesVisiting students should have at least 3 Classics courses at grade B or above (or be predicted to obtain this). We will only consider University/College level courses.
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Not being delivered
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. demonstrate, by way of coursework and examination as required, command of the body of knowledge considered in the course;
  2. demonstrate, by way of coursework and examination as required, an ability to read, analyse and reflect critically upon relevant scholarship;
  3. demonstrate, by way of coursework and examination as required, an ability to understand, evaluate and utilise a variety of primary source material;
  4. demonstrate, by way of coursework and examination as required, the ability to develop and sustain scholarly arguments in oral and written form, by formulating appropriate questions and utilising relevant evidence;
  5. demonstrate independence of mind and initiative; intellectual integrity and maturity; an ability to evaluate the work of others, including peers.
Reading List
Badian, E. 2012. Collected Papers on Alexander the Great [ed. Richard Stoneman]. London & New York.
Bosworth, B. 1988. Alexander the Great: Conquest and Empire. Cambridge.
Briant, P. 2010. Alexander and his Empire - A Short Introduction. Princeton.
Carney, E. 2006. Olympias, Mother of Alexander the Great. London & New York.
Heckel, W. 2006. Who's Who in the Age of Alexander the Great: Prosopography of Alexander's Empire. Marlden.
Heckel, W. & J. Yardley. 2004. Alexander the Great: Historical Sources in Translation. Oxford.
Holt, F. 2016. The Treasures of Alexander the Great: How One Man's Wealth Shaped the World. Oxford.
Ogden, D. 2011. Alexander the Great: Myth, Genesis & Sexuality. Exeter.
Roisman, J. ed. 2003. Brill's Companion to Alexander the Great. Leiden.
Stewart, A. 1993. Faces of Power: Alexander's Image and Hellenistic Politics. Berkeley.
Wheatley, P. & E. Baynham. 2015. eds. East and West in the World Empire of Alexander the Great. Oxford.
Worthington, I. 2014. By the Spear - Philip II, Alexander the Great and the Rise and Fall of the Macedonian Empire. Oxford.
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills -development of critical analysis and argumentation in oral and written form
-the ability to synthesise a variety of ancient evidence
-development of data compilation
-the ability to express ideas clearly and coherently
-research skills
-presentational skills
-time management, organisational, and team-work skills.
KeywordsNot entered
Course organiserDr Christian Djurslev
Tel: (0131 6)50 3473
Course secretaryMiss Alexandra Adam
Tel: (0131 6)50 3767
Help & Information
Search DPTs and Courses
Degree Programmes
Browse DPTs
Humanities and Social Science
Science and Engineering
Medicine and Veterinary Medicine
Other Information
Combined Course Timetable
Important Information