The home of classical tragedy, Greece, might soon see classroom time being freed up for gender studies at the cost of Greek tragedy lessons.
The plans have been proposed by the Greek Education Ministry and are currently being considered by the nation’s governing party Syriza, reports The Times of London.
If the changes go ahead, texts such as Sophocles’ Antigone and historian Thucydides’ The History of the Peloponnesian War will be left aside in place of studies surrounding gender equality and sex education.
The Panhellenic Association of Philologists (PEF) however isn’t happy with the prospect, issuing a statement to express its opposition to the proposal, which they believe is part of the Ministry’s continuous attempts to eliminate ancient Greek entirely from the curriculum.
“This is preposterous. Not even during Greece’s gruelling years of dictatorship were the works of ancient masters like Sophocles and Thucydides excluded from high school curriculums,” Antonis Mastrapas of the National Federation of Classical Studies Professors told The Times.
It is well known that classical studies have taken a blow in recent years around the globe, with other subject areas gaining momentum, and scholars are worried about the prospect of Greece going down the same road and what it will mean for the discipline.
While Greek students have an advantage in studying ancient texts with their knowledge of the modern language, for others around the world it is increasingly becoming an elite area of study.