Memoria Press Cicero Studies

Classical studies don't fit neatly into either subject area or grade levels. Is any particular course literature, history, government, philosophy, or worldview? Should this study be covered in any particular grade? Such is the case with the Cicero Studies from Memoria Press. Cicero was a Roman statesman writing in the first century BC typically addressing the politicians of his day. His works have been preserved and studied through history and have had a dramatic impact on our own American government and history. These guides from Memoria Press allow the classically serious high school student to dig into Cicero. What do I mean by classically serious? Cicero makes references to events, people, and philosophical schools that he assumes his readers will understand and he does not explain them. So, teachers and students will need to have a solid background in Roman history and government - particularly an understanding of Late Republican politics. However, because Cicero's political philosophy is grounded in the history and politics of the late republic, it is more accessible to the average high school student than other classical Greek philosophers.On Obligations communicates Cicero's conviction that upright moral life was the happier life. He examines justice, wisdom, beneficience, courage, and propriety - trying to convince Roman politicians to adhere to a stricter moral code. The Republic became the blueprint for the U.S. government and The Laws is both a defense of Cicero's understanding of the upright moral life and the foundation for the West's philosophical discussion of natural law.

Direction and insight is found in the consumable Student Guides which provide a synopsis (outline) of the selection that is then broken down into Lessons (sixteen from Obligations, eleven from Republic, and six from Laws). Each lesson provides thought questions (discussion and essay) and comprehension questions for the reading assignment (six pages total).The Teacher Guides are mostly identical to the student book except they have answers to the comprehension questions which provide the student with feedback. The TGs also have exams for each lesson as well as midterm and final exams (with answers). There are no additional teacher helps in the TG as it's assumed the Teacher is (at least as) knowledgeable as the student in terms of Roman history. Both student and teacher guides seem to assume a classroom situation but the course would be "doable" for a motivated independent student; although she may have to sometimes dig a little for background information. Student books about 100 pgs, pb; Teacher books about 150 pgs, pb. ~ Janice




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