Greek Literature and Language - Classical

Find out about education programs that include the study of classical Greek literature and language. Learn about career options, as well as the average salary for anthropologists, archeologists and postsecondary teachers in the field.

Is Classical Greek Literature and Language For Me?

Field Overview

The study of classical Greek literature and language could help you understand the development of Western culture. You would learn classical Greek to analyze ancient literature, poetry and prose. You would study the culture's theology, philosophy and law while examining its effects on Western history. Your analytical and critical thinking skills and capacity for complex ideas would be developed through this track of study.

Bachelor's, master's and doctoral programs are available in classical Greek literature and language. These programs are most commonly offered under a classical studies concentration, encompassing Roman and Greek studies. A Greek language and literature major could prepare you for further education in business, law and medicine.

A master's degree in classical Greek literature and language opens research opportunities in anthropology or archaeology. A doctorate degree (Ph.D.) allows graduates to teach at the university level.


According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), in May 2012, the median annual wage for anthropologists and archaeologists was $57,420, and foreign language and literature postsecondary teachers earned median pay of $58,670 ( From 2012-2022, the BLS predicts that jobs for anthropologists and archaeologists will increase 19%; meanwhile, jobs for postsecondary teachers of foreign language and literature are expected to grow 15%.

How Can I Work in Classical Greek Literature and Language?

Undergraduate Education

You could pursue a Bachelor of Arts in Classical Studies to learn about classical Greek literature and language. Such an interdisciplinary undergraduate program involves the study of the classical Greek and Latin languages in combination with original Greco-Roman texts. The study of archaeology, art history, philosophy, science and religion may be included in your curriculum. Some universities may offer a language intensive option that would challenge you to become fluent in classical Greek and Latin. You may also be required to compose a comprehensive research paper based on independent research and seminars.

Graduate Studies

Advanced degrees in classical Greek literature and language are interdisciplinary. These involve the study of literary criticism of classical Greek literature, philosophy, political science, history and religion. Master's degrees are recommended for those not interested in pursuing a career in academia, which demands a Ph.D. degree. Doctoral programs typically require intensive seminars that include surveys of Greek literature and additional research. You may need to pass translation examinations of classical Greek prose. Furthermore, you will need to create, present and defend a written dissertation proposal crafted under the supervision and guidance of specific faculty members in order to earn a terminal degree.

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