Respond to one viewing/reading source (200 words minimum) and then to at least two other student posts (15 points/5 pts/5 pts). At least 300 words total are expected (add word count). Write directly in the typing field. Remember that you may have to wait until someone chimes in on another topic than yours — hence obliging you to go back and rejoin the discussion.
For this week’s discussion board, choose one of these three topics and respond to all questions. Each option will require a bit of research, but all allow you to show off your creative-writing skills, if you choose: Please note that the Cicero readings are in the textbook and also posted in this week’s module:
1. Cicero, On Duty. What responsibilities does the great Roman orator believe that people have towards their society? Is he encouraging altruism or self-interest — or both? What are the results of successful diplomacy? What do you feel people owe society, if anything? Justify your position from personal and/or public experience — in other words, things that have happened to you and/or to someone in the public eye (politicians, celebrities, historical personalities).
2. Pliny the Younger, Letters. This will require a bit of research. First, write a paragraph summarizing the event that Pliny the Younger describes. Be sure to tell us what happened to Pliny the Elder and also to the neighboring city of Herculaneum. Feel free to imagine the experience of surviving a natural disaster — think Mt. Saint Helens, Hurricane Katrina, or our recent wildfires and floods! Then pick one of the many discoveries from Pompeii, furnishing a link and/or image. This might be a building, a sculpture, or a fresco. Using our 3-step art criticism rubric (formal/social/symbolic context), describe it, telling us its history and associations, and why you chose it. To comment on some else’s post, explain why you agree/disagree with their choice and refer them to a similarly intriguing artwork (not necessarily from Pompeii).
3: Triumvirat Presents Pompeii. After watching the BBC docudrama, listen to the musical retelling of the story by the German prog-rock group. How effectively does the concept album capture the human tragedy in musical terms? Considering it like a piece of musical theater, what scenes from Pompeiian life do the compositions imagine? Explain how the music impacts you, and under what circumstances you actually listened to it. You must discuss at least three of the songs, referring to lyrics and/or musical motifs to illustrate your points.