Senior Thesis

All majors in the Classical Civilizations program are required to complete a senior thesis during the Fall semester of their senior year.


Students in the fall semester of their senior year will enroll in the 3-credit CLAS 499 course, the successful completion of which is necessary for the degree and its various concentrations.  In the spring semester, students will meet several times in a pro-seminar format with the department faculty to discuss a wide range of issues concerning the fields of Classics, ancient history, and archaeology.  Areas to be discussed include an introduction to professional organizations in our region, the country and abroad as well as an introduction/review of library and online resources available in the above-mentioned fields.

For the thesis project itself, students are currently expected to complete a 20+ page paper on a subject relating to the Classical languages or ancient culture.  A wide range of topics may be selected by the student, and the project may expand upon work previously completed by the student, if applicable. 

Topics must be submitted to the department chair for approval by the start of the senior's final semester.

In addition, students will present a summary of their work at an informal departmental dinner at the end of the semester, an opportunity to present their findings and answer questions from faculty and their peers.

Past Senior Theses

2013 Theses

  • Fallgren, Victoria: “The Julio-Claudians: They Put the Fun in Dysfunctional”
  • Gerbec, Michael: “Everlasting Light: Roman Heritage and Roman Resistance in the Early American Republic”
  • Gorini, Andrew: “Frontinus’ De aquis and an Administrative Precedent of State-Criminal Negotiations”
  • Hanks, Hanna: “Social and Sexual Intercourse: Exploring the Role and Reality of the Hetaira in Classical Greek Culture and Iconography”
  • Joyce, Brian: “Vergil: Having Been Twisted His Mouth”
  • Joyce, Katherine (Kaeli): “Make New Friends, but Keep the Old: The Jewish-Roman Treaty of 161 B.C.E.”
  • Rice, Alexis (Lexi): “’Carmen et Error’: Tensions with the Augustan Ethos in Ars Amatoria”
  • Sears, Lily: “The Only Place We are Free: An Examination of Stoic Compatibilism through the Writings of Aristotle and Epictetus”

2012 Theses

  • Ankenbruck-Keogh, Corinne: “Gender Identity and Death in Vergil’s Aeneid
  • Hardesty, Larissa: “Carthago Delenda Est: An Analysis of the Second Punic War and the Effects of Hannibal’s Invasion of Italy on the Foreign Policy of the Roman Republic”
  • Manglona, Kyle: “The Christianization of Pagan Sites: The Development of the Roman Basilica in Late Antiquity”
  • Marley, Leah: “What’s Up, Doc? The Mythology, History, Practices and Archaeology of the Ancient Healing Cult of Asklepios”
  • Pierucci, Antone (Tony): “Vitrum Flexile:  A Case Study of Roman Mold-Blown Glass at the Seattle Art Museum”
  • Smith, Nathan: “Aristotle, Diodorus Cronus, and Future Contingent Propositions: A Contemporary Solution to an Ancient Problem.”
  • Taylor, Sydney: “Late Antique Christian Iconography: The Redefinition of Pagan Motifs and Their Respective Use on the Mediums of Gemstones and Coinage”
  • Von Muller, Sara: “The Advancement of the Minoans: The Introduction of Large-Scale Palace Architecture and Trade With Hyksos Egypt”

2011 Theses

  • Van Houdt, Jennifer: "From Fear to Awed Fascination: Taboo and Tragic Myth Structures in Phaedra’s Love"
  • Taylor, Brittany: "Hercules Across the Ages"

2010 Theses

  • Devine, Kevin: “Perceptions and Misconceptions: A Look at the “Barbarian” Peoples to the North of the Roman Empire.”
  • Gross, Alexander: “The Drunken Master: Alcibiades”
  • Ruen, Amanda: “Thomas Jefferson: Classical Influences on a Founding Educator Impacting His Vision for America”

2009 Theses

  • Plass, Maureen: "A discussion of the similarity between the rhetorical structure of Cicero's Pro Archia and the musical structure of Bach's Prelude and Fugue IV"
  • Seidel, Curt: "Friendship: Views from Augustine and Aristotle"

2008 Theses

  • Hutchins, Spencer: "Praetor in the Roman Republic: History and Etymology of a Foundational Institution and Concept"
  • Studebaker, Ian: "The Greek polis of Argos"
  • White, Kellie: "Virgils' Aeneid: Why the Roman Epic Genre imitated the Greek and how Virgil altered the Epic model to suit an Italian Audience"

2005 Theses

  • Clayton, Andrew: "Two Early Christian Conceptions of Original Sin: an examination of the ideas off Saint Augustine and Saint John Chrysostom"
  • Stobart, Christina: "But Augustus, the People do not want to change!: the stubborn immorality of early Imperial Rome"

2004 Theses

  • McAuliffe, Matthew: "Early Christian Perspectives on War and Military Service"
  • McFarland, Molly Egan: "The Catilinarian Conspiracy"
    CLASSIC CIVILIZATION DEPT.
    Dr. Andrew L. Goldman
    Deptartment Chair
    502 E. Boone Avenue AD 35
    Spokane, WA 99258-0089
    Phone: (509) 313-6691
    Fax: (509) 313-5718
    Email: goldman@gonzaga.edu
    www.gonzaga.edu/classic-civ