Select ONE of these two questions and prepare the most polished DIRECT RESPONSE of which you are capable. Do not stray from the material required, do not dilute your arguments with extraneous data! These questions MAY require you to research materials outside of the readings themselves. Note, please, that both of these questions implicitly exclude Homer's works, except as general referants to the genre itself. It's time to move on.
The University of Pennsylvania, you should remember, offers its students assistance in improving their writing and argumentative skills outside of the classroom via the Writing Across The University program. WATU writing advisors provided by the University can be found in locations throughout the campus, information available at 898-8525, 9-5.
Both Milton and Vergil, by the nature of the environments in which they wrote, and/or by their own design, had purposes clearly beyond simple entertainment in composing their works. What are those purposes? They both say. How do these purposes influence the direction and the entertainment value of their works, as compared with that, for example of Apollonius?
You COULD just do Vergil and Apollonius, if you have not yet approached the Milton--but you would not have to complete ALL of Milton in order to approach this topic strongly.
Describe how known historical events influence the dramatic action and the narrative of either Apollonius of Rhodes ' Argonautica, Vergil's Aeneid, or Milton's Paradise Lost. All three poets leave reasonably clear indications of such influence--find them and analyze them.