Sport was far from being mere entertainment in ancient Greece. At the major Greek festivals – the Olympic Games among them – it was performed in honour of the gods, in sacred space and among religious ritual and ceremony. It was a crucial way for city-states to demonstrate their excellence in a climate of controlled and sanctioned rivalry against the backdrop of near-constant warfare. And the athlete’s body was at the heart of artistic, aesthetic, philosophical and scientific discourse.
A module on sport, therefore, takes students to the essence of ancient life on both the practical and the symbolic level. Professor Barbara Goff, however, also used her module on this theme to create some innovative assessment types and to allow students to channel what they learned through a diverse range of activities and outputs. Many of the students’ projects within the module now have a place within our outreach and widening participation activities.
Barbara has written a blog about the module on the University of Reading’s ‘T&L Exchange’, and you can find the piece here.