Divination is the art of seeking knowledge of the unknown or the future. It is a consultative institution that offers insight into a question or situation by processes and means that are usually connected to a sacred worldview and conceived of as supernatural. Found across cultures and history, divination was so vitally important to the Greeks that it was included among the technai (arts, skills or crafts) that Prometheus gave to humankind. For over a thousand years, Greeks from all social backgrounds consulted oracles for guidance, received directly from the gods, on personal or social quandary.
In this five-week online course, we will consider the different kinds of oracular practices of the Greeks, from itinerant oracle givers (seers, healers, oracle-sellers and others) to the institutionalised oracles of Delphi, Dodona and other oracular sanctuaries. We look at oracular stories in literature and at oracular tablets found at Dodona and Delphi, and we think about the motivations behind peoples’ oracular consultations, considering psychological and anthropological aspects of the oracular process.
Classes will be conducted via Zoom on Wednesdays, 19:00-20:00 (UTC, UK time) on 19th January, 26th January, 2nd February, 9th February and 16th February 2022.
Fee: £35. Tutor: Dr Katerina Kolotourou.