Election Candidate Statements
Click on the links below to read the statements from candidates for each office. The candidates were asked to address in their statements: (1) their experiences and qualifications relevant to the office for which they are standing; and (2) what they hope to contribute to SCS and achieve if elected. Candidates were also asked for links to online CVs or for CVs that the SCS office could upload to its website.
Voting will open in early August.
- Vice President for Program
- Contingent Faculty Director
- Director with Special Responsibility for Equity
- Graduate Student Director
- Nominating Committee
- Program Committee
- Goodwin Committee
- Committee on Professional Ethics
Professor of Classics and Associate Director of the School of Literatures, Cultures and Linguistics at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Twenty-seven years ago, when I first came to the US to begin my post-graduate studies at Brown University, I was very proud to be able to live in a country that had long been known as a melting pot of diverse cultures, populations, and ideas. My country of origin is Greece, where at the time members of many groups were still marginalized, bullied, or mistreated. Almost three decades later, there is no question that the US (and the rest of the world) have undergone change, and we are faced with many problems culturally, socially, and politically that require us to fight for many of the rights that had been won long ago. Classics is not immune to societal change and transformation; our field has always been called to answer challenging questions and at times solve (effectively or not) many of the issues that have long plagued humanity. Especially now, we have no choice but to come up with new ideas and plans about how to move forward, as we come out of an extended period of isolation after a prolonged global pandemic; many of our members have experienced loss of a loved one, loss of a job, loss of stability and the feeling of extreme frustration with the job market, uncertainty with life choices such as the pursuit of an advanced degree, especially in a field like Classics and ancient studies or the humanities in general.
In my opinion, some of the priorities for the next few years should be the following: first, there is work to be done with our commitment to diversity and inclusion; this is not a simple task that can be addressed in a month or a year but takes constant effort from us all every day, now and in the future. We have long been marked as a profession with prejudice, associated with white supremacy and the appropriation of the ancient world for dark purposes. But we have also often been linked to practices that privilege only certain categories and groups, be it because of skin color or accent or sexual orientation. Let us seriously question our past practices, let us make the effort to embrace our members in all their diversity and find common ground. Making our workplace diverse is not limited tothe hire of one or two co-workers from underrepresented groups, but it rather continues daily, in our instruction, in the service to our communities. Let us see people and stand with them in all honesty and humility! Second, we ought to increase our support in fellowships, grants, awards, prizes for research, teaching, training. I have worked extensively with development at the University of Illinois and was able to secure one of the largest donations in the University, earmarked for Hellenic Studies, one that offers student opportunities at all levels (study abroad, internships, fellowships), in addition to research grants. Having served on the SCS Development Committee, I would like to work closely with our Society in promoting advancement and fundraising. We can create more funding opportunities, especially for graduate students and contingent faculty. Third, I would like to see the expansion of fields represented in our discipline without past prejudice: for instance, the emergence of reception studies in recent decades offers a good example. What other areas have we overlooked in the past because of canonical or other preconceptions? This should not be a discussion about dismissing philology; I am a philologist by training and have worked on very traditional projects as well as projects in line with modern approaches to antiquity. Beyond disciplinarity, however, which is and remains very important, interdisciplinarity should also be fostered and actively supported in Classics, and the SCS is and has to remain in the forefront of such initiatives. Fourth, I would like to see the strengthening of links and ties with other classical associations in north America and abroad. Technology has provided an indispensable tool for how we work and how we meet online, without replacing the value of in-person interactions (as in conference spaces, for instance); such technology can be used to bring together Classicists from around the world in close collaboration. I would also like to add that I am a supporter of in-person meetings and have attended almost all SCS meetings and other regional meetings (e.g., CAMWS) for the past 25 years, but I am well aware of the need to adjust to current circumstances and hybrid opportunities where possible. Finally and most importantly, fundraising should focus on supporting undergraduate and graduate studies as well as departments in danger, where possible. But it all starts much earlier in education, already in middle and high schools, and we should strengthen our support for such programs.
From the beginning of my career as a visiting assistant professor in 2000, I have been able to serve the SCS and the profession in a variety of ways: I have served on several SCS committees (Coffin, Minority Scholarship, Development, Nominating); I was the secretary-treasurer for the WCC, President of CAMWS, and editor of two journals, ICS and CJ. I was also honored to receive the SCS award for excellence in teaching. I have taught at private institutions in the beginning of my career and now for the longest period at one of the largest public universities in the country, in Illinois, where I was Head of my Department for five years, before becoming the Associate Director of the School of Literatures, Cultures and Linguistics. The School comprises 12 Departments and Units in the Humanities (e.g., Classics, Spanish/Portuguese, French and Italian, Linguistics, Religion, among others); this position has given me the opportunity to work closely with other Departments in the Humanities, especially in the languages: we all face some of the same issues and problems from enrollments and ever-shrinking budgets to TA funding and job opportunities for our undergraduate and graduate students. As Director of Graduate Studies in Classics in the past, I have revamped the curriculum, trying to offer many more opportunities to graduate students from funding to alternative career paths. As a proud product and member of the American educational system, I am committed to paying forward all opportunities given to me many years ago; I intend to work hard to accomplish as much as possible and help move our association and field forward.
Professor of Classics and Women and Gender Studies, and Director of the Jackman Humanities Institute, University of Toronto
The SCS has played a formative role in my thinking about the professional study and public face of classical antiquity since grad school, when I first attended an annual meeting. I joined the APA/SCS, CAC, CAMWS and WCC while still a grad student and over the years I’ve served all four associations –the WCC on the Steering Committee, as Co-Chair (2000-01), and as Canadian liaison; CAMWS on the committee for the promotion of Latin; the CAC as VP, President, and Past President (2008-14); and the SCS on various committees (CSWMG, Research, Membership) and the Board of Directors (2016-19).
Over the years I’ve seen a welcome broadening of our discipline to identify, include and support members of marginalized, muted and out-groups in the SCS. I applaud the expansion of the Society’s services to offer targeted assistance for racialized colleagues, middle-and high-school teachers, early career researchers, and the precariously employed, and would like to see us take further steps in this direction. In particular, I would make it a priority to enhance existing connections between schools and colleges, public as well as private, and to build new ones, with a view to making our field still more accessible to students and teachers from historically marginalized and under-represented groups.
My teaching and research on women, slaves, and ethnic and religious minorities in the ancient Mediterranean has confirmed me in the view that there remains much work to be done in documenting the contemporary relevance of our disciplines both within the academy and beyond the institutional context. In keeping with the times, the SCS has transformed itself over the last couple of decades from a narrowly professional association into a more public-facing society that addresses contemporary concerns directly and inclusively (e.g., in the Ancient Worlds, Modern Communities program, formerly Classics Everywhere). I would like to enhance and amplify these developments, with more attention to the Forum Prize and better funding for the Outreach Prize. As a broad-and podcast enthusiast, I enjoy classics podcasts of all stripes and would like to partner with other learned societies (e.g., ACLS, NHA) to produce series and/or single episodes in flourishing brands (as, e.g., the MLA has done in the past with NPR). Whether through public-facing partnerships of this kind or shared academic engagement, constructing closer relationships with related scholarly associations and private and public foundations can strengthen classics and the humanities more broadly both in public discourse and in our pedagogical institutions.
Another positive development in recent years is the Society’s more robust collection of demographic data at the department level. I would like to see the SCS look beyond classics departments, however,and broaden our data tracking to recognize and support colleagues teaching classical antiquity in schools and college departments of Humanities, English, World Languages and Literatures, and the like, as they can feel isolated in their departments. The SCS is in a strong position to provide academic and professional assistance and community to them.
Finally, the twin threats of pandemic outbreaks and climate catastrophe continue to demand our attention. After two years of virtual conference attendance, we are all eager to return to an in-person meeting in New Orleans. Yet I think we would also do well to consider planning proactively to come together virtually on a regular three-year cycle, now that we have positive experience of the online meeting platforms. Indeed, our nimble response to the pandemic can help frame a way forward to mitigate the devastating effects of climate change on future generations. Mandating a virtual meeting every three years would confirm the Society’s commitment to ameliorating the environmental impact of our personal and institutional travel so that our students, and our students’ students, can enjoy the privilege of meeting in person too. It would also be a practical way to offer a more inclusive option for colleagues unable to afford the annual trip.
I believe that working collectively makes us better teachers, scholars, and citizens, both locally and globally. For that reason, I’ve accepted a succession of administrative appointments at my large, publicly funded university. Having started out in the Women and Gender Studies Institute as DGS (2004-06) and then Acting Director (1-6/2007), I introduced an inclusive, diverse and equitable approach to department administration during a six-year term as the first female chair of Classics (2007-13, Acting 2016-17), and now I direct the U of T’s Jackman Humanities Institute (2017-). I’ve edited are fereed journal (Phoenix, 2002-07) and for the past twenty years I’ve also co-edited a couple of classical series at UTP. In these varied roles, I’ve tried to prioritize teaching and research support for graduate students, early career colleagues, and members of the full range of equity seeking groups. I champion inclusive, diverse, and equitable teaching, service, and scholarship; public-facing humanities research and knowledge dissemination; and academic and public recognition of students of the humanities at all levels. It would be a privilege to support the Society’s work in these important areas.
Paul Allen Miller
Carolina Distinguished Professor of Classics and Comparative Literature, University of South Carolina
The Vice President for the Program is charged with the oversight of the Society’s Committee on the Program, which is arguably the most important part of the SCS annual meeting. The Program of our Annual Convention is a statement of who the society is and who it wishes to be, as well as a logistical challenge. In my tenure as editor of TAPA, I saw my position as one that both sought to offer an expansive and innovative vision of the field and one that was beholden to no one group but represented the profession in its totality, across ideological, political, and methodological divides. It is the task of the Vice President for the Program to be an advocate for the representation of every student, teacher, and scholar of Classics in North America. He or she must stand up for equity and combat racism, sexism, religious bigotry, and stereotyping of all kinds. This means having a vision of Classics that encompasses not just the achievement of its past but also what Classics can mean to a larger, more diverse community of students and scholars. It means showcasing the continued relevance of the study of the ancient world to understanding today’s concepts and conflicts with regard to race, ethnicity, sex, sexuality, gender, class, and nation. It means not seeing Classics as an unchanging museum but as an active inquiry into how our past—material, textual, historical, and intellectual—has shaped and been received by diverse communities, those who have been inspired by it and those who contest it. It means investigating how our present reshapes our views of the past. Lastly, it means articulating this expansive vision to a diverse audience through crafting an innovative program that ensures new voices are recognized and nurtured and that scholars at a broad range of public and private institutions have the possibility to present their research and address the community. This means expanding the new kinds of presentations already developed—lightning talks and roundtables—while thinking creatively about how we can continue to update and modernize the program. The SCS can be an important voice in crafting an inclusive vision both within and outside the profession. The program is one crucial way we make that voice heard.
For eleven years I served as Vice Provost and department chair at the University of South Carolina. In those roles, I dealt directly with organizational issues and brought together diverse scholars to create a vision of who the university was and who we aspired to be. I have a record of advocating for scholars across the humanities, promoting racial, sexual, gender, national, and religious diversity.During my tenureas Vice Provost, the University of South Carolina won the APLU Gold Award for Diversity and Inclusion in Internationalization. The future of the study of the ancient Mediterranean must be global and transdisciplinary. A narrow, Eurocentric vision of our field risks condemning what we love to irrelevance, leaving small programs an easy target for cost-cutting administrators. I have published widely on both Latin and Greek and I am a pioneer in the use of innovative theoretical models. If the Society is to thrive and prosper, the program of our meeting must not only represent the traditional subfields of Classics, but it must also search for new opportunities to engage in dialogues with other disciplines, other and new traditions, other voices and languages.
Professor of Classics and Theater and Performance Studies, University of Chicago
I have been asked to state how I am qualified and what I hope to contribute to the SCS by taking on this position, should I be elected to it. I think I will have much to learn, so I cannot answer this question fully, but I will offer, briefly, my impressions of the SCS programming. I believe the Program Committee suffers from a perceived lack of transparency, and seems to function under the aura of mysterious priorities. This appears to be the case even though the SCS has posted generous guidelines and helpful advice as to how participants can submit abstracts. So I think that it would be a service to all members to make more clear what the Program Committee’s aims and guiding principles are, and –in doing so –allow those aims and principles to be up for debate. For my own part, I am excited to see the field taking some steps toward greater diversity in theory and practice and I am eager to see more and bolder steps of this nature, while I also value the fine work that we as classicists have long practiced: the study of and curiosity about the ancient world that brings us together.
My qualifications: I have served as a member of the Pearson Fellowship Committee (2010-13), a juror on the John J. Winkler Memorial Prize Committee (2018-19), and a Member of the Committee on Gender and Sexuality in the Profession (2018-20). I was also a Member of the Committee on Classical and Modern Literature for the MLA (2017-20). I am the Editor-in-Chief of the journal Classical Philology, which gives me something of an overview of the field, and I am currently the Professional Skills Advisor in the Classics Department at UChicago, which prods me toward attempts at decoding its present and foreseeing its future.
Latin Teacher, Belmont High School
I wish to serve on the board of SCS, because the organization has done a tremendous amount of work to grow and become a more inclusive organization. I believe we are moving in the right direction and I believe that my voice as a board member can help push us along further and faster.
As one of only a few African-American members of SCS, I believe my unique experiences and expertise will bring an entirely new perspective to the Board. I have also worked with SCS and others orgs to broaden access to Classics through pedagogy. I hope to bring all of this to the role of Board Member.
I really enjoy working collaboratively with others and my focus is always on the collective over the individual. I have an insatiable appetite for growth and change, and I am always willing to try something new and take chances. I am never afraid to do the right thing and will always take full responsibility for the consequences of my decisions. I believe my willingness to challenge the status quo will be an asset to the Board.
Professor, Department of Classics, University of Washington, Seattle
The study of the ancient Greek and Roman world in relation to its broader contexts is embedded in complex social, political, and economic networks. As members of the Society, we can use our voices and our work to help initiate and foster developments we want to encourage. It is an honor to be considered for a position on the Society’s Board of Directors.
As a faculty member at the University of Washington I have served as Undergraduate Program Coordinator, Graduate Program Coordinator, and Chair, working alongside faculty and graduate student colleagues to provide our economically, socially, and ethnically diverse student body with a wide range of opportunities to encounter the ancient Greek and Roman world and explore its legacies. Service on the elected College Council which advises the Dean of the University of Washington College of Arts and Sciences on promotion and tenure and other matters has offered me multi-disciplinary perspectives on what can “count” as academic and intellectual innovation and leadership, a close look at how administrative structures have the potential to advance equity, inclusion and justice, and a broad context for financial and social challenges that confront our field. For the SCS I have served on the Nominating Committee and on the Career Development Committee, for which I helped produce the updated graduate student edition of Careers for Classicists. Regionally I have been regularly active in the Classical Association of the Pacific Northwest. Since joining the University of Washington I have worked with K-12 teachers in various formats, helping to organize annual workshops for teachers interested in including study of the ancient Greek and Roman world in their classrooms, helping undergraduate and graduate students prepare for careers as teachers, supervising and working with teachers who offer dual-enrollment high school Latin courses for UW college credit, and serving on the World Language Advisory Committee for the state of Washington. I also work collaboratively with college faculty and Latin teachers as a member of the Editorial Board of Classical Outlook. I’ve long been a member of the Women’s Classical Caucus and value opportunities to learn from the vibrant work of other SCS affiliated groups including the Asian and Asian American Classical Caucus, Classics and Social Justice, Eos, Hesperides, Lambda Classical Caucus, and the Mountaintop Coalition.
If I were to be elected to the Board of Directors, I would aim to bring forward-looking and inclusive perspectives to the Society’s ongoing work of supporting those who study and teach in a wide variety of institutional contexts. This includes thinking carefully about the future of graduate education and the increasing prevalence of academic precarity in our discipline, as well as about the persistent and emerging challenges facing many types of departments and schools. I believe careful reflection and considered action to address legacies of racism are also part of the Society’s responsibilities. The Board also can work to strengthen and develop innovative frameworks for exploring and communicating about ancient Greece and Rome, including evolving digital initiatives. Collaborations with colleagues and institutions across the globe can also continue to be fostered by the SCS. I would welcome the opportunity to collaborate with others in this work.
Assistant Professor, UNC-Chapel Hill
“Come as you are, grow as you go”
This is a phrase I often use to define my approach to outreach and service as I work to create “communities of care.” As a relative newcomer to the field of Classics, I have a deep desire to contribute where I can and pave the way for others to thrive. Since starting as an Assistant Professor at UNC in 2018, I have had two major goals in my service work: to show the possibilities of what we can achieve when we are in community and to encourage others to feel as excited about our amazing colleagues and their work as I do. I pair these motivations with a practical skill set, diverse life experiences, and unique perspectives, which I have cultivated by working in various careers in both academic and non-academic spaces, including organic chemistry, animal handling, non-profit fundraising, journalism, business, and information technology.
Currently, I serve as a co-chair on the Steering Committee of the Women’s Classical Caucus (WCC) and a Board Member for the Asian & Asian American Classical Caucus (AAACC). In each of these organizations, but particularly at the WCC, I have devoted time to building environments in which people at various stages and with different backgrounds and interests feel like they have a voice and a path to positive action. I believe that everyone can make a contribution to improving our field and their experience in it from any stage and that they should be able to do so in a collaborative community that will not only encourage them but give them the support they actually need based on where they are. To this end, I have worked to create multiple channels of support, which have included 1) direct financial assistance, as in the case of the SCS-WCC Covid-19 Relief Fund and WCC Equity Funds, 2) professional development events and workshops to help academics improve their craft (e.g. reflective pedagogy series, publishing series, and job market series), and 3) interlocking platforms of support around the areas of research, teaching, and service (e.g. a redesigned mentorship program, AcaParenting discussion series, Archaeologists of Color roundtable, a two Gatherings In Solidarity with AAACC Against Anti-Asian Hate, and the Feminism Beyond the Binary Collaborative Roundtable Discussion at FemClas2022, to name a few). In addition, I have helped spearhead the WCC’s year-long, fiftieth-anniversary celebrations by introducing a new WCC logo and store, by co-hosting conference receptions at the SCS, CAMWS, CANE, and FemClas to celebrate our communities, and by launching the WCC at 50 oral history project, featuring interviews with founders and early leaders of the WCC. Through my work so far, I have been deliberate about fostering micro-communities and building platforms which offer support to our colleagues at various life and professional stages. Moreover, I have done so by creating a collaborative infrastructure that challenges our current “grind and burnout” model of work and attempts to replace it with one committed to joy, empowerment, and belonging.
As a member of the SCS Board of Directors, I will continue to create communities of care in areas of urgent need and to find ways to activate people in the areas they are passionate about so they have an abundance of opportunities to shine and thrive.
Click here for Suzanne Lye’s Curriculum Vitae
Michael C. Sampson
Associate Professor of Classics, University of Manitoba
Currently serve on the committee adjudicating the SCS’s Koenen Fellowship in Papyrology, but this is the first time I’ve been nominated for election to office. The timing feels right for answering the call. To the membership, my pledge is straightforward: if elected, I will serve on the team of directors with integrity and an open mind. I do not assume I would have an answer or solution to any (let alone every) eventuality the society might face, but I will collaborate generously in the pursuit of shared goals, attentive to perspectives, experiences, and voices other than my own. In other words, I’ll approach the work as I do my other professional responsibilities. Every educator knows that learning is richest when it is propelled by the students’ engagement with the subject matter, the lightning in a bottle of classroom dynamics. Open-mindedness benefits research, too, which is why I am currently leading an interdisciplinary group projecton papyri from Karanis –the latest in the series of academic collaborations that punctuate my CV. My own philological inclinations are regularly improved by specialist colleagues’ expertise. Humility also applies to service. I am an active member of the international consortium curating the open-access papyri.info portal, to which I make regular contributions and for which I provide editorial oversight and conduct frequent outreach, all while liaising constructively with project developers. On the SCS board of directors, too, I would have the modest goal of contributing something of lasting value to a much larger enterprise.
Directors-at-large are assigned no particular portfolio in the SCS, so I have no specific agenda to promote or campaign upon. But my training and experience position me as an advocate both for subdisciplines on the periphery of Classical Studies and for an inclusive, upright, and interdisciplinary approach to the study of antiquity. I have been both student and faculty at large, public institutions and small, private ones, whose demographics ranged from virtual homogeneity to majority-minority. I have spoken out publicly when presented with evidence of research misconduct in the field. And although I am a philologist by training, I have embraced papyrology, digital tools, and archaeology as partners in my work (though I would by no means claim proficiency or expertise in all!) I marvel at our discipline’s breadth –the many ways one can ‘do’ Classical Studies or ‘be’ a Classicist–and I would continue encourage the open, transparent cross-pollination of data, theory, and methodology as a director of the SCS.
PhD student, Department of Classics New York University
I am delighted to serve as candidate for the position of Graduate Student Director-At-Large for the Society for Classical Studies. I am currently a second-year doctoral student in the Department of Classics at NYU, where I study the interface between Homer and Near Eastern literary texts. As an interdisciplinary scholar transitioning from coursework to dissertation-writing, I am able to think about the many different problems facing graduate students in Classical Studies. If elected, my two main priorities will be combating ableism in the profession and supporting robust interdisciplinarity.
As a leader at NYU and my undergraduate alma mater Marquette, I created resources for student with disabilities and represented my peers in local and national institutions. Most relevant to the current position, I come with substantive experiences as a voting member of a nonprofit Board. From 2016-2017 I served as one of two voting Girl Members-At-Large for the Girl Scout Board of Directors of Wisconsin Southeast. Not only did this position provide me with the experience of being a voting member for a Board of Directors of a national organization; I also received financial training as well as an understanding of the innerworkings of a large organization. Beyond this, I also have relevant qualifications as an advocate for graduate students, the field, and humanities in general. As an undergraduate student, I led university-wide protests and rallies in support of our humanities’ graduate students and non-tenured track faculty when my university announced campus wide program cuts due to the COVID 19 pandemic. The protests gained national attention and demonstrate my commitment to amplifying voices that are traditionally barred from a seat at the table in higher education.
If elected to the office of Graduate Student Director-At-Large, I will work to make the Society for Classical Studies more accessible for and supportive of scholars with disabilities. I was born with Optic Nerve Hypoplasia, a condition that has left me permanently and completely blind in my left eye. At the undergraduate and graduate level, I have faced egregious examples of ableism, most of which I believe is rooted in the field itself. I would like to work with the Committee on Diversity in the Profession to create digital resources for confronting ableism and creating an accessible environment for graduate students and professors in Classics. Similar to the “Antiracist Resources: Links and Lists” tab on the SCS’ Website, I want to design an interface for Anti-Ableist Resources. My experience as a community member of CripAntiquity and as a graduate student panelist for the Society for Ancient Studies’ panel, “Ableism & Physical Disability and the Ancient World,” which was part of their series, Critical Conversations in Ancient Studies, have shown me the importance of advocating for myself as a disabled scholar and others. Additionally, I would like to use my tenure as the Graduate Student Director-At-Large to emphasize and support interdisciplinary approaches to the ancient Mediterranean, particularly those which focus on broadening the traditional Western view of antiquity. My own scholarly goals, which focus on the intersection of Near Eastern and Homeric ritual motifs, allow me to advocate for and appreciate the importance of interdisciplinarity in Classics. I greatly admire the work of both the Graduate Student Committee of the SCS and the AIA’s Student Affairs Interest Group in organizing an interdisciplinary dissertation lecture. I intend to endorse the continuation of this lecture and work closely with the GSC and SAIG during my tenure. Further, I would like to enrich the SCS blog with more interdisciplinary exposure, for example, with the discussion of questions of cultural transmission in the ancient world.
As Graduate Student Director-At-Large, I would have the qualifications and, thus, the opportunity to also advocate for broad interdisciplinary representation at the SCS’ annual meetings. For these reasons, I am appreciative for the opportunity and am very eager to run for the position of Graduate Student Director-At-Large.
Emma Claire Pauly
Incoming PhD Student, UCLA Department of Classics
I am deeply honored to have been selected by the Nominating Committee to stand for this position; Del Maticic’s shoes are humbling ones to even think about filling. My fellow candidates are likewise an impressive group and no matter who the votes rule in favor of, I believe the creation of this position represents a moment of expansion and an opportunity for advocacy.
At present, I have just completed an MA at the University of Chicago via the Master of Arts Program in the Humanities (MAPH) Classical Languages Option and will be entering the PhD program of the UCLA Department of Classics in the fall. My previous education is from the University of Chicago (BA) and the Bristol Old Vic Theatre School (MA). Prior to my entrance into the MAPH program, I worked as a freelance dramaturg, translator, and performer specializing in works from or engaged with antiquity. I am at present a member of the SCS, CAMWS, WCC, and LCC, as well as an organizer of Queer and the Classical (QATC), and have spent the past few years transitioning from the arts into academia. My non-traditional entry into and experience with Classics grant me a unique perspective that I believe will be of use to the SCS. I will be entering UCLA’s PhD Program with a few more years under my belt than a student straight out of undergrad or even straight out of an MA; as such, I am able to speak both as an active graduate student and from a place of maturity and experience.
Additionally, my non-straight path (in all meanings of the phrase) into and through Classics has intersected with another community in the midst of a reckoning with itself, its history, and its possible futures: the American theatre industry. From my training as an actor, my work as a dramaturg, and my experience of the arts, I bring both creative problem-solving and the spirit of the ensemble to the table, as well as insight from outside the academy. And speaking of the non-straight path, it is not only my lived theatrical experience that I can bring to the Board of Directors, but my lived queer experience as a non-binary classicist.
If I am elected to the position of Graduate Student Director, I hope to work in close concert with the Graduate Student Committee and use my position to effectively and clearly communicate the needs and priorities of graduate students to the board. These needs include cementing resources and protocols for coping with burnout, financially supporting those graduate students whose work the SCS platforms (and creating more opportunities for said platforming), and establishing easier pathways for networking among graduate students at different institutions. I will also advocate for graduate students organizing within their own institutions and to encourage the other members of the board to advertise or make public their position in support of these organizing efforts. In the same breath, I will bring my perspective as a graduate student (and the perspectives of others with whom I take counsel) to bear on broader issues within the field: greater attention to material culture, reception, and antiquity beyond the Greco-Roman, continued efforts towards inclusivity, and combating the present state of the job market, among others.
This expansion, inclusion, and growth cannot come without recognition of the powerful and deep-rooted connections of Classics and white supremacy—not only recognition, but active disavowal, funding and supporting anti-racist initiatives,and doubling-down on supporting the work and well-being of classicists of color, both as producers of academic content and as living people under extreme and constant duress. There is immense potential for change and for action within the SCS and I hope to establish some infrastructures to support those impulses. In my time in the field, I have seen the passion and drive of marginalized, precarious, young, or non-establishment scholars stymied not by ill-will or active refusal, but by the fact that systems are simply not in place to implement action. I will remedy this by working with the board, the Graduate Student Committee, and the many advocacy and solidarity groups present within the discipline (including but by no means limited to organizations such as the WCC, LCC, AAACC, Mountaintop Coalition, Eos, Crip Antiquity, and Trans in Classics) to lay down specific and thoughtful guidelines for addressing concerns, creating change, and mediating conflict. This applies to incidents of racist rhetoric and action, moments of queerphobia or transphobia, and failures in disability access, to name a few. I also hope to look not only to the margins of Classics and those studying antiquity, but outside the academy altogether, towards those working outside of higher education (artists, interdisciplinary creators, and more) and away from a vision of classics that closes the door behind those who enter into it. In my experience of the theater industry, there is a pervasive belief that suffering is a necessary component of life as an artist, that success is only earned if you break yourself in obtaining it, and I have often found it so in Classics. I do not believe it need be so and will work towards a world where it is not.
Click to view CV
Zoé Elise Thomas
PhD Student, University of Texas at Austin
For three semesters (Spring 2019 - Fall 2020), I served as one of two graduate student representatives for the Department of Classics at the University of Texas at Austin Graduate Student Assembly. My duties included attending biweekly meetings to represent Classics graduate student interests; proposing, drafting, and revising legislation to present graduate student interests at large to the administration; and reporting regularly to the graduate students in my department about plans and ideas that were discussed in the Graduate Student Assembly. In addition, I served for a year (Fall 2020 - Spring 2021) as one of two graduate student representatives to the Department of Classics, which involved collecting graduate student interests and ideas and presenting them to the department faculty, as well as hosting various events and facilitating meetings between the Faculty and graduate student bodies.
As the Graduate Student Director for the SCS, I will be able to share my own experiences as a 5th year graduate student in this field with the Board at large, and I will work to survey and collate graduate student concerns and ideas to present to the Board. There are serious structural problems facing graduate student members of the SCS, and the position of Graduate Student Director is an important part of supporting and representing graduate students in our field. However, the structural issues run deeper than a Graduate Student Director can remedy in one term, so I propose here some incremental but meaningful and long lasting changes to help support graduate students and lay a foundation for future advocacy and change. My primary focus will be on increasing knowledge and accessiblity of programs and resources available to graduate student members. Many of the Classical Caucuses are essential for developing a robust professional network and varied professional interests, but knowledge of these organizations is unevenly distributed, especially among students at smaller institutions or outside the confines of philology. Working closely with the graduate student representatives of these organizations, I will collect relevant information (such as cost for graduate student membership) for each group in one centrally located flyer, which I will then distribute to each interested graduate department coordinator and chair for them to share with their graduate students. This annual distribution of updated information will help increase awareness for graduate students about the professional resources available to them. Other potential projects I would be interesting in exploring are pursuing opportunities for alt-ac mentoring from people who have left academia, and facilitating graduate student networking at the Annual Meeting in a structured way to make sure graduate students who may not have a preexisting network can feel included and welcomed.
Senior Adjunct of Classics, Franklin & Marshall College
I have held non-permanent full-time faculty positions for my entire career: I was a Visiting Assistant Professor in Classics and Philosophy at Grinnell College from 2008–2009; a Visiting Assistant Professor in Classics at Knox College from 2009–2012; and finally a Visiting Assistant Professor in Classics at Franklin & Marshall College from 2014–2022, where I was recently relegated from full-time Visitor to Senior Adjunct Professor. As a result of these experiences in my own professional life, I have rich and varied perspective on many of the challenges and concerns facing many who find themselves among the ranks of the “contingent.”
In addition, for eight years I was part of the Sunoikisis inter-institutional program, serving for four of those years as Fellow in Curricular Development. In that program I sought to develop multiple forms of community for faculty members who were the sole members of their Classics departments, while I advocated strongly for adjuncts and under resourced individuals. Part of my work included making on-site visits to liberal arts colleges in order to stand up for Classics faculty positions there.
Finally, as a graduate student I began what has become a long record of working toward institutional change: for two years I was a graduate student representative on the Rutgers Board of Trustees. In that position, I learned quite a bit about how to create meaningful change by listening and watching how such a body operated. I began to develop my own voice as an advocate during that early moment of institutional service.
Contingent Faculty Director is a new role, so full of potential. I would use this role to carve out a powerful space for an increasing population: the contingent and non-permanent instructor of Classics. This position deserves a seat at the table in order to develop an important tradition of advocacy for this otherwise invisible (or ignored) group of our peers. The SCS deserves kudos and kleos for recognizing the need for and then introducing a position like this on our Board of Trustees, and so I am asking for the opportunity to speak on behalf of others. I pledge to tap into and then broaden the community I developed while at Sunoikisis in order to truly represent multiple perspectives within this community of contingent and often marginalized faculty. As a long time non-permanent faculty member myself, I have a personal interest in listening closely to—and then literally bringing to the table—the perspectives and challenges of this often neglected but essential community within Classics.
Associate Professor of Practice (Classics) University of Arizona
As a contingent faculty member myself, I am excited to stand for the position of Contingent Faculty Director on the board of the SCS.
This position would be a natural step forward from my ongoing work with the SCS, including long-time involvement with the Committee on Ancient and Modern Performance, and more pertinently, serving on the Committee on Contingent Faculty. I joined this committee in 2020, driven both by my own status as a contingent faculty member and my desire to support others, given the relative privilege I enjoy within the spectrum of contingency. Being very aware of the vagaries of the job market, I feel lucky to have found a (fairly) stable position, with decent salary and benefits, manageable workload expectations, and supportive colleagues, where I can grow and contribute both to my department, my university, and my field. It is for that very reason that I want to make sure that we (the scholars who makeup the SCS) are doing all we can to help others secure the same. As part of my work with the Committee on Contingent Faculty, I have helped implement our mentoring program, helped design the SCS contingent faculty grant program, and have helped lobby forthe creation of this contingent faculty director position.
Contingent faculty are a hugely diverse group, not only in terms of our backgrounds and interests, but also in terms of our experiences of and relationships to contingency itself. I recognize that there is no singular contingent experience, and so part of the work we as an organization must do is to get a better sense for the scope of contingency in our field: How many of us are contingent? In what ways? For how long? If the SCS is to support our contingent faculty, we need to know the answers to these questions. Though we might all dream of an academia that re-embraces tenure and rejects adjunctification, I suspect our efforts are best spent in a.) supporting contingent faculty in the great work they are already doing, in all aspects of Classics: outreach, service, teaching, and scholarship, and b.) using the levers available to us to help pressure institutions towards more humane conditions of employment.
I see this position as bearing two chief responsibilities: firstly, like all directors, to serve the organization and ensure the long-term stability and success of the SCS (and our field of study more broadly), and secondly, to represent the concerns, ideas, and perspectives of contingent faculty to the board as part of its deliberations. I am excited and prepared to contribute to both of these tasks, which are at this point, desperately entangled. Our long-term prospects are closely tied to how we support, engage, and celebrate all classical scholars.
Elizabeth Ellen Mercier
Senior Lecturer, Latin and Ancient Greek School of Languages and Cultures Purdue University, West Lafayette, Indiana
I am honored to have been nominated to run as a candidate for the new position of Contingency Faculty Director-at-Large. I have been teaching in contingent positions at Purdue for twenty-two years: twelve as a non-continuing lecturer, eight as a continuing lecturer, and two as a senior lecturer. I know well the heavy load that many of us carry as contingent faculty. Currently, I teach a 4/3 load (with seven preparations) in addition to Honors hours that serve as my fourth “course” in the spring. In my time at Purdue, I have taught sixteen different courses. I have designed and implemented four new courses, including a 300 level Latin medieval manuscripts course and two etymology courses. I have assisted in five study abroad trips to Greece, and recently created my own three credit study abroad course in Italy that will launch in May of 2023. I have served as faculty sponsor of the Purdue Classics Clubandstarted Purdue’s Eta Chi chapter of Eta Sigma Phi, the national Latin and Greek Honor Society. I have fulfilled numerous Greek and Latin Honors contracts with students, served as faculty mentor on several Honors senior capstone projects, supervised Wilke undergraduate research assistants, and worked with the OUR Scholars program through the Purdue Office of Undergraduate Research. I strive to stay as deeply involved in as many aspects of university life as my time allows. My length of service at the university and my engagement both within and beyond my department have given me an awareness and insight that will serve me well should I be elected as Contingent Faculty Director-at-Large.
In my twenty-two years at Purdue, I have watched the role of contingent faculty evolve. I have been subject to policies within the university system that exclude contingent faculty, and I have also been the beneficiary of new policies designed to improve our conditions. In 2018, some colleagues and I decided to form a Continuing Lecturers Committee within my academic department, the School of Languages and Cultures. I offered to serve as secretary, a position which I have maintained for the past four years. The Continuing Lecturers Committee has given us a collective voice in advocating for improvements in our working conditions, pay and benefits, along with access to some of the academic advantages and opportunities from which we had previously been excluded. We have worked closely with our department head and helped organize auniversity-wide, townhall meeting with the assistant provost. Here are some of the issues we are focused on:
• Pushing to change the university classification of continuing lecturersfrom “staff” to “faculty”
• Examining teaching loads/preparations of continuing lecturers and making sure they are transparent, equitable, and consistent across disciplines
• Calling for a narrowing of the extreme gap between continuing lecturer salaries and salaries of our tenured and tenure-track colleagues
• Proposing (and achieving) a new promotional ladder for continuing lecturers [Note: The disheartening thing is that, while some of us were promoted to senior lecturer, the change in title did not come with the promised salary increase.]
• Increasing travel and professional funds for contingent faculty
• Increasing access to competitive grants, funding, and special programs
• And, within my own department, helping to draft a new professional activities report template that more accurately reflects the unique and varied achievements and contributions of continuing lecturers I suspect that many of our concerns are shared among my colleagues at other institutions, and I am eager to engage in a wider discussion about the unique issues faced by contingent faculty nationwide.
Purdue is not alone in reflecting the national decrease intenured and tenure-track faculty and increase in lecturers. While contingent faculty are being asked to take on more and more of the overall university teaching load, there has been little attempt to improve our pay and benefits. I would like to help other universities develop pathways to promotion for contingent faculty. Additionally, I would like to see the elimination of loopholes that serve to keep contingent faculty in undesirable circumstances. One example is the practice of requiring adjunct faculty to sit out for a semester every three years to avoid university protections that demand payment of benefits for anyone teaching over three years. Practices of this kind seem unnecessarily exploitative.
Aside from issues regarding pay and benefits, the most difficult challenge for me personally has been trying to continue my own research and scholarship while being denied the opportunity to compete for grants, funding, and special programs open only to tenured or tenure-track applicants. I see no reason why funding opportunities or special programs should be limited to tenured and tenure-track applicants. I think many of us working as contingent faculty would be willing and eager to compete with our non-contingent colleagues for access to these opportunities. I know I am not alone in feeling that my deep and abiding interest in my own projects in forms my teaching and fills me with renewed energy and enthusiasm for the subjects I teach. To be denied the opportunity to more easily and more fully engage in scholarship is to make an already inequitable situation worse.
I am overjoyed that the SCS has made the decision to give contingent faculty a seat at the table. I would love to have the opportunity to serve my colleagues. I vow to represent the interests of contingent faculty in all matters and work closely with the Contingent Faculty Committee to ensure that I am representing our collective interests in the clearest and strongest way possible. I am eager to solicit applications and assist in selecting awardees for the Contingent Faculty Grant competition and serve ex officio on the SCS Nominating Committee. The creation of this new position on the Board of Directors is a wonderful opportunity and one to which I will dedicate myself earnestly.
Leslie Clark Professor in the Humanities and Professor of Greek, Latin, and Classical Studies, Bryn Mawr College
As a white British person born to socio-economic privilege, I am pretty much the living cliché of a classicist. My doctorate in medieval studies, however, gives me a certain insider/outsider perspective on the discipline. And I have been passionately engaged with both feminist and queer critical perspectives ever since my first year teaching in the US in 1989/90. But it is only in the last few years, through working on my book “Augustine the African”, that I have been thinking more fully about diversity and equity in classics. Setting out to undo a Eurocentric narrative, I have read widely in North African literature and in critical race theory. Of course, these years have coincided with the intensification of a wider conversation about race and intersectionality, particularly after the death of Trayvon Martin and the founding of the Black Lives Matter movement. I often get the question, “So was Augustine Black?”, and that has led me to unpack the assumptions behind it and their problematic consequences for those who seek to participate in this field. It is high time for me to use my seniority and privilege to work for the people and ideas that have been sidelined by the traditional discipline. Next year I shall be running an ACLS-funded public engagement grant, “Greek Drama/ Black Lives: intergenerational collaboration in Philadelphia”.
The Directorship would be another avenue to continue this work. As Director with special responsibility for equity, I would see my role as being threefold: (1) to serve as a contact point and first responder for members’ observations, suggestions, and complaints about all forms of issues concerning DEI within the SCS and in our professional environment more generally; (2) to support pre-existing DEI initiatives within SCS-affiliated bodies, while both identifying gaps in coverage and trying to prevent duplication; (3) to identify and lift up those early-career scholars, including graduate students, who will diversify our profession by their very presence and whose work and viewpoints will expand our collective sense of intellectual possibility. To build a more inclusive future, we need a richer knowledge of our present.
CV can also be accessed from this page:https://www.brynmawr.edu/inside/people/catherine-conybeare
Associate Professor Department of Classical Studies University of Western Ontario
My experience is primarily of the “lived” kind: I have been openly gay since I was an undergraduate, and have been a quadriplegic wheelchair user since an accident when I was a PhD student. But I also have considerable privilege as a cisgendered white man, securely employed, and a settler on Indigenous land. This complex identity—and of course we all have complex identities—reinforces for me daily the importance and challenges of DEI (or, as we call it up in Canada, EDID). I deal with these challenges regularly in my teaching, and was able to think even more carefully about them as Graduate Chair in my department (2017-20). More recently, I was an invited speaker at a panel called “Disability inclusion and participation in ancient world studies” (University of Victoria, November 2021). I’m also co-chair of a University Accessibility Planning Committee, which has just submitted a report to our Provost for the spending of an initial $1 million investment to address areas such as our accommodation processes, built environment, and Universal Design for Learning initiatives.
I hesitate to articulate a vision formy tenure as SCS equity director. Some of the biggest equity challenges in our discipline centre on race, ethnicity, gender, and (especially in Canada) decolonization and Indigenization; here, I can offer neither lived experience nor any particular qualifications. My priority would thus be to seek out,listen to, and amplify the voices of those people who do have experiences and qualifications—the stereotype of the older white man who does all the talking continues to be accurate in many of our institutions. But identity is delightfully complicated, and in part because of my own lived experiences I often find myself reminding the relevant levers of power that DEI/EDID includes things like LGBTQ+ and disability concerns. Equity for those with disabilities is, I think, an especially important and underappreciated issue in academia: we study and work in spaces that are at the same time uniquely welcoming and insidiously challenging to those with disabilities. If elected, I would therefore hope to continue focusing on our discipline’s most obvious equity challenges, while at the same time expanding our vision to more fully capture the diversity of people that our institutions should work to include.
Molly Ayn Jones-Lewis (she)
Senior Lecturer, University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC)
The Director with special responsibility for Equity is a position of proactive advocacy within the SCS board of directors, and I am aware that to hold it requires a great deal of trust in my ability to spot opportunities for growth and willingness to work to see those opportunities realized. I will begin with my most recent and relevant experience as part of the board of ReMeDHe (theinternationalworking group for Religion, Medicine, Disability, and Health in Late Antiquity) in the midst of responding to an equity issue at the 2021 North American Patristics Society meeting. For our open letter outlining the situation and our initial response, see https://drive.google.com/file/d/1aouVllL3Og7ET0sr97_H-L30X5b1xYZx/view.
We decided as a board to take the incident as an opportunity to develop our own statement of inclusive community standards in partnership with various advocacy communities, especially those representing disability and accessibility related issues in professional spaces. This work formed the basis not only of our new mission statement, which the board is in the process of drafting, but real and immediate changes in the way ReMeDHe hosted our events during the pandemic. Captioning, regular breaks, improved submission practices, and better moderation guidelines have been incorporated into our regular practices as a society. This is just a start for us, but the process not only helped us think about what an inclusive professional space looks like but also develop better ways of taking on and incorporating feedback. The entire process has given me great insight into how even a smaller professional society can take large, immediate steps towards inclusivity as well as what sustainable, long-term goals can look like.
For me, this is the latest in a series of choices in how I choose to contribute to the environment of Ancient Mediterranean Studies. From the beginning, my scholarly work has focused on how intersecting identities impacted the lives of people, especially healthcare workers, in Imperial Rome. This work came from my empathy for and interest in subalternity within the Roman world, but also a desire to be a better member of my modern community. Some insights have come from personal experience at the margins of academic culture, and others from ongoing work to dismantle my own biases formed as a white woman from a rural American community.In the classroom, accessibility and inclusivity has been a focus of my teaching, both in terms of content and pedagogy; as a neurodivergent scholar with disabilities, making the field safer than it was for me is particularly important. That lived experience and my years in precarious untenured employment inform my passion for equitable spaces. I have not always been the most visible face in the room, but I have been working hard wherever I have been to make my part of the field better.
One of my greatest strengths, and perhaps greatest weaknesses, is that I am constitutionally incapable of not speaking up when I see something that can be done better. Since that is the case, I have also taken care to speak up effectively, with respect and good faith. This position calls for candor as well as kindness while helping the SCS to make choices that will create a space in which scholars from every walk of life can collaborate productively with one another. Accessibility is not ancillary to this goal, but necessary. So is inclusion. Our lived experiences—especially those that make it more difficult for us to enter spaces like the SCS—are indispensable to understanding the dynamics we see at play in the Ancient Mediterranean. If elected, I will bring my candor and my kindness to the table when helping the board make decisions that impact every member, especially those most vulnerable to exclusive practices. I will educate myself proactively and I will listen to what folks tell me about their needs, their ideas, and their hopes for the community we all share. In me, you will find someone who combines the ability to work well in a team with someone who persistently (if sometimes imperfectly) works to do the right thing for the people around her. I promise to listen, then speak up, then follow through on policies that will protect the vulnerable and invite participation from everyone who comes to the table.
Professor, University of South Carolina
I have been a member of the SCS for over two decades and served as South Carolina’s SCS Legate for two years. As a member of CAMWS (Classical Association of the Middle West and South) I have served as SC’s Vice President, Southeast Regional Vice President, and most recently, President of the organization (2021-22). In my role as CAMWS president I have become well acquainted with the challenges of finding individuals with the time, skills, and inclination to serve, especially when this involves service to professional organizations less familiar to their tenure-or contracting-granting home institutions (a primary duty of the CAMWS President is to make committee and VP appointments for the upcoming academic year). Over the past four years since its inception (2018-2022), I have also acted as elections officer for the International Ovidian Society (IOS), a job which requires consulting with the nominating committee to come up with an annual slate of candidates. All of this is to say that I’ve gotten very used to being told “no” (I don’t take it personally) and have been heartened by the people in our field who in fact are willing to do what it takes to make Classics a dynamic, productive, and ever-evolving discipline. If elected to the nominating committee, I will ensure that the people we ask to serve represent a wide range of interests, academic backgrounds, and perspectives. I have worked regularly with SC’s secondary school teachers (e.g., during SCJCL events, like the Fall Forum hosted on U of SC’s campus) and am especially interested in encouraging participation among k-12 faculty. I would also encourage the nomination of SCS members whose scholarly agenda push the boundaries of what “Classics” signifies in the twenty-first century.
Assistant Professor of Classics, University of Arizona
I worked for a number of institutions—and different kinds of institutions—before landing at my current home at the University of Arizona. My diverse employment experience has brought me many friends and colleagues and has attuned me to the variety of concerns that preoccupy Classicists and academics in general. Some of these concerns have found their way into the Society for Classical Studies Blog, to which I began contributing four years ago, eventually becoming one of its Associate Editors as a member of the SCS Communications Committee. My contributions to the SCS Blog are wide-ranging but cohere around the basic goals of enlarging the scope of Classics and diversifying the perspectives we bring to it. My professional service likewise prioritizes diversity, equity, and inclusion. I have served on diversity committees at my institution, participated in workshops on inclusive pedagogy, and am currently a Co-Chair of the Asian and Asian American Classical Caucus. Through my research and teaching projects as well as my work with the SCS Communications committee and the AAACC, I have experience reaching out to Classicists and bringing them together for collaborative efforts around a shared purpose.
My own priorities very clearly dovetail with the those of the SCS Nominating Committee. The candidate slates in recent years have been the most diverse they have ever been, thanks undoubtedly to this committee’s tireless recruitment efforts. If elected to this position, I hope to continue the committee’s excellent work, mainly because of my conviction—informed by many in the field I admire—that diversifying Classics is not only an ethical project that serves marginalized populations, but also an intellectual one, as diversity among Classicists fosters diversity in our approaches to and insights about antiquity. Ultimately, prioritizing diversity benefits the field as a whole, as fresh perspectives and new knowledge are produced when the contours and boundaries of Classics shift and are redefined with increased access and inclusion.
Tara S. Welch
Professor, University of Kansas
Classicists are facing the question more than ever, “Why it is important to study antiquity?” Even as we incorporate new methodologies and tools. The SCS must be vigilant to the many ways these changes play out in our programs and institutions. Broad and diverse involvement in the SCS is the surest guarantee that the organization remains ready to address the challenges and opportunities we face. In practice, my commitment to broad participation means that in seeking candidates for the SCS’ many open spots each year, I would scour the faculty pages for all sorts of programs, from public and private R1 institutions that offer the PhD, to liberal arts colleges of every stripe, to community colleges, and to other programs in which one (exhausted) teacher shoulders all curriculum on antiquity. I would seek particularly to identify (and cultivate the interest of) junior scholars, newly-minted associate professors, and contingent faculty, especially where greater SCS involvement might lend those individuals support or leverage at their home institutions. In turn, I hope that all individuals who serve the SCS can bring the greater disciplinary context to bear at their own institutions as they seek to garner administrative support, persuade legislators, reach alumni, cultivate public interest in antiquity, and broaden access to Classics.
As a department chair, an external program reviewer, co-chair of the WCC Steering Committee, and Trustee of the Vergilian Society, I have gained varied perspectives on facets of Classics programs that don’t often appear on meeting agendas, in newsletters, or in the news. Ultimately, our collective goal is to know more and to think more deeply about ancient societies and our relationship to them. Relationships made on SCS committees ought to promote that goal.
Professor of Classics and Comparative Literature, Barnard College and Columbia University
I have been a member of SCS for the past three decades and have attended meetings regularly but only served on one committee: a precursor to the two committees on gender and sexuality and diversity (Committee on the Status of Women and Minority Groups). I very much enjoyed serving on that committee, as I have been committed to diversity and inclusivity since I started out in this profession, although in the 1990s this mostly involved confronting gender harassment and bias, as well as resistance to interdisciplinary and theoretical innovations in the field. This is the emphasis that I would bring to the Nominating Committee, which from my perspective ought to serve as means of insuring the advancement of the fields of ancient studies in progressive directions that include broader diversity issues without unfairly burdening the still too few underrepresented minority members of SCS. I am also affiliated with Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies at Barnard and the Barnard Center for Research on Women.
My teaching and scholarly work focuses on adjacent issues of identity and self-presentation, especially embodiment, performance, and subjectivities, as inflected by gender, race, and class (etc.); I have tried to model approaches to the ancient material that take cues from the most inclusive and innovative contemporary theorizing at the intersection of aesthetics and politics. In the past decade this focus has resulted inthe hosting of two roundtables on this intersection in Greek literature and culture, the creation of a Comparative Literature lecture and seminar under the rubric of "Tragic Bodies," for each of which I received Barnard presidential research and pedagogy awards. In 2021 the project culminated in the book Tragic Bodies: Edges of the Human in Greek Drama, which won the 2022 PROSE Award for Classics. I have substantial experience in administration, at both Barnard and Columbia, having served on many key committees for both institutions, repeatedly chaired both the Barnard department and the central Barnard faculty committee (on governance and procedure), and served as the Director of Graduate Studies for Classics at Columbia for four years. I also helped to found and subsequently served on the Barnard Faculty Diversity and Development Committee; and while serving as DGS I founded a departmental Equity and Inclusion Committee.
Associate Professor of Classics and Ancient Mediterranean Studies, Penn State University
I am firmly committed to equity and inclusion in the study of the ancient world. As a new member of the Program Committee, I would work to diversify the pool of presenters and topics included at the SCS annual meeting, as well as to broaden access by providing continued virtual options and financial subsidies. I would rely on my experience as a peer reviewer, having refereed about twenty articles, book manuscripts, and research proposals for seven international journals, four academic presses, and the American Academy in Berlin. I am also a co-founder and co-president of Eos: Africana Receptions of Ancient Greece and Rome (an affiliated group of the SCS). In that position I have co-organized numerous conference panels, contributing to the peer review process and facilitating logistics more broadly. In terms of scholarly expertise, my main areas of research are Roman Comedy, Latin literature of the late Republic and Early Empire, and Black Classicism, but I have also published on Greek and Roman wordplay, Roman historiography, graffiti in Pompeii, magic, the Classics in US-American politics and literature, and the History of Classical Scholarship.
In further qualifications, I would note that at Penn State, I am, at the University level, a member of the Joint Curricular Task Force on Racial and Social Justice and the Global Academic Leadership Council. As a Faculty Senator, I chair the Global Engagement Committee, and I have also been Vice Chair for the Faculty Senate committee on Educational Equity and Campus Environment. In PSU’s College of the Liberal Arts, I co-chair the Committee on Diversity, Inclusion, and Transformation. In the Department of Classics and Ancient Mediterranean Studies, I have organized three conferences and various outreach events, several of which focused on the reception of the ancient world among the Global Majority. In the wider discipline, I am the 1st Vice President of the Classical Association of the Atlantic States (CAAS). I have also chaired the Finance Committee of the Classical Association of the Middle West and South (CAMWS).
Associate Professor of Classics, University of South Florida
I have been a member of the SCS since 2004 and have attended virtually every meeting over the last two decades. I have also served as an outside reviewer for over thirty monograph and article manuscripts submitted to most major university presses and journals in the field of Classical philology. I view the annual program as a representative snapshot of our field, its members and its concerns in any given year, and I will bring this perspective to my work on the program committee. In the last few years, there have been a number of welcome changes in the disposition of the annual program; I will work to build on these recent innovations, while also striving to expand and diversify the methodological and geographical parameters of the papers presented at the meetings. Specifically, I will aim to include more papers on reception studies, digital approaches to antiquity, and global classics initiatives and research programs, while incorporating greater interdisciplinary and co-authored papers where possible into the program. I would also like to establish a permanent place for public-facing scholarship on the SCS annual program.
Generally, my service to the profession has focused on professional matters and matters of representation and equity in our field. These are the most pressing issues facing the field of Classics, and I will make them central in my work developing the SCS’ annual program. Paramount in all of these program initiatives is a commitment to make more space for papers that showcase the concerns of groups historically excluded from the field, including but not limited to the constituencies represented by CODIP, COGSIP, the Committee on Contingent Faculty, the WCC, the Lambda Classical Caucus, AAACC, the Mountaintop Collective, Trans in Classics, and the Classics and Social Justice Group. I will also work to make the annual meeting more accessible via delivery hybridization, public outreach, recorded sessions and digital presentation materials. The pandemic has revealed just how powerful such tools are in the service of accessibility, and the SCS annual program needs to harness them fully going forward.
Professor of Classics and Ancient Mediterranean Studies University of Puget Sound
I have organized or co-organized four conferences, including the 2018 annual meeting for the Classical Association of the Pacific Northwest. For more than a decade I have been devoted to the curation of newly emergent sub-disciplines within the larger field of ‘Classics / Classical Studies', in particular the study of classical receptions in science fiction, fantasy, comics, and gaming. In support of this work, I have co-organized and refereed abstracts for four co-edited volumes (published with Oxford and Bloomsbury), several conference panels (including an APA panel in 2011), several round tables (including eight consecutive round tables at SCS meetings), and a Sunoikisis workshop at the Center for Hellenic Studies. I have previously served the SCS on the Outreach Committee (2019-2021; chair, 2021). In all of this work, I have aimed, on one hand, to respect long-standing scholarly practices that maintain quality control while, on the other hand, to expand the boundaries of what constitutes ‘Classics / Classical Studies' and to make space for diverse methodologies and perspectives—especially in terms of sex/gender, race, class, and ability—so that we might all feel empowered to collaborate and be heard in this larger scholarly endeavor bringing us together at the AIA-SCS meetings.
If I am elected to the SCS Program Committee, I aim to collaborate with colleagues to produce meeting programs that reflect who we are collectively in our difference and diversity, in terms of both content and methodologies. This means I will need to constantly evaluate my own biases, as well as set aside my own tastes and preferences, in order to work with the committee to craft a program that looks all of us—like our capacious, fabulous, messy ‘discipline’— as a whole. I hope to see an SCS program that reflects what‘ Classics / Classical Studies' has done well, what it needs to reckon with (especially in terms of race and labor), what it can do much better, and what it could imaginatively be. I know this requires careful, intentional work from committee members who are able to engage each other in critical, difficult, and respectful dialogue, and I hope that I can bring my own experience doing such sensitive work to this important, discipline-curating committee.
Link to CV
Associate Professor of Classics and Director of Interdisciplinary Humanities: Ancient and Modern, Howard University
My professional service focuses on curating engaging intellectual experiences for my students, for fellow faculty, for the college and university (as Phi Beta Kappa president), for the DC community (especially through my work at the Center for Hellenic Studies in DC and UVA’s Center for the Liberal Arts), and for the profession at large (through my work with Eos, SEMCR, and as SCS legate). A critical part of being successful in these endeavors has been to ensure that everyone feels welcome, everyone contributes to a respectful exchange of ideas, and that everyone walks away with a sense of having learned something and benefited from the experience. As an active member of SCS and other academic societies (CAAS, RSA, MLA, IANLS) and research centers (CHS, CASVA), I have participated, organized, chaired, and served as moderator or respondent for numerous panels, sessions, workshops, seminars, roundtables as well as organized symposia, conferences, performances, and exhibitions. Through this work, I have encountered numerous configurations and formats and have experienced what works well in different contexts. Since much of my service and scholarly work involves connecting the field with a broader audience, I know and highly value what diverse voices and expertise contribute to the evolution of our field. I am committed to bringing this energy, knowledge, and experience to my work on the program committee.
Beyond reviewing abstracts and creating a program from those abstracts, I view the role of the program committee as one that crafts stimulating and rewarding experiences at the annual meeting for all its members. It should not only intellectually enrich but also support and strengthen its members in the crises we face individually, as a field, and in the humanities more broadly. It must be accessible, inclusive, and responsive to all individuals, programs, and institutions. As a program committee member, my ultimate goal is to make the SCS annual meeting the academic highlight of the year for everyone.
Lucy Shoe Meritt Professor in Classics and Professor of Art History University of Texas at Austin
I think my principal experience/qualification is a broad range of experience across the field in general and in evaluating scholarly work in particular. My own work is principally historical, but I’ve passed through more literary and material culture studies as well. As a reader of others’ scholarship, I recently served a term on the SCS program committee. I’ve also been around long enough to have done refereeing for most of the major journals and presses in the field. I’ve done the same for venues in other disciplines such as the Cognitive Science Society annual meeting, the Journal of the Warburg and Courtauld Institutes, and American Political Science Review. I have been a juror for the Rome Prize, I currently sit on the editorial board of Privacy Studies Journal, and I’m serving another term on the faculty advisory board of the the University of Texas Press.
The charge of the committee is quite general (to “identify outstanding contributions” in “all areas of classical studies”). Obviously the “areas” of the field expand over time, and good work tends to flow into all of them, and that work comes from differently situated scholars. As a result the task of the committee is largely to try to keep up. Looking at the list of recent awards, I am convinced that they have done a good job, and that along multiple axes: technical vs. interpretive vs. theoretical emphases; emerging vs. established scholars; an expanding sense of the “classical” in time and space and reception. Since change is a given, constant attention is required, but I would hope to continue the recognition of diversity of excellence in the field.
Ronald J Mellor Professor of Ancient History UCLA
I arrived in the US in September 2021 after a career spent mostly in universities in England and Scotland. My most recent position in the UK was as Director of the Institute of Classical Studies in London. I have held chairs in Ancient History, Classics and Archaeology and my own research lives happily between and across those boundaries. I have written on cultural imperialism and on intellectual life at Rome, on urbanism and the ancient economy, on ancient religion and literacy, and I am currently working on human mobility. My natural center of gravity is the Roman world, but I enjoy teaching and researching beyond it. I have a fair bit of experience in reading for various national and international bodies, I sit and have sat on editorial boards and of course read tenure dossiers and manuscripts for various presses. But my most relevant qualification is a genuine fascination with the whole of our subject.
Being elected would give me the chance to read widely among the best of recent monographs. Our field is expanding in its geographical range, and in its methodological sophistication. I would expect to read innovative studies that make use of stable isotopic analysis and others that engage with classical texts through critical race theory. The Goodwin Prize Committee has a broad membership and it needs to be broad minded in its sense of the subject. Wonderful books emerge from traditional methods too, but we have a special role in recognizing some of the most successful efforts at reinventing our field, and making it engage with the many urgent issues that confront us as citizens of the world.
Argyropoulos Professor of Hellenic Studies University of California, Santa Barbara
I am honored to have been nominated to serve on the Committee on Professional Ethics. The Committee has two main responsibilities: to provide informal and formal resolution of specific grievances that are referred to it, and, as part of the Professional Matters Division, to work towards ‘the promotion of equity in all aspects of the profession’. In my thirty years as an academic (the last twelve at UCSB, and previously at very different types of institutions including Arizona State University’s Interdisciplinary Humanities Program and the Classics Faculty at the University of Cambridge) I have gained considerable experience in working with sensitive and confidential issues, and resolving conflicts. I have been Department Chair and overseen appointments, promotion, and tenure cases, and have served on the SCS’s Committee on Women and the Status of Minority Groups (as it then was). I now serve on the editorial board of the Studia Graeca Upsaliensia series, and have been co-editor of the journal Ramus: Critical Issues in Greek and Latin Literature (CUP) for sixteen years. I was recently lead curator of the exhibition Harmonia Rosales: Entwined. I learned much about professional ethics from serving on the editorial board of the on-line journal Eidolon, which provided a forum for feminist and anti-racist work, and for discussing ethical issues from viewpoints that included the most marginalized. My latest book Antigone Rising (Bold Type Press, 2020) explores how classical antiquity can help, and hinder, us to address problems today, from school dress codes to transphobia.
There are a number of pressing issues relating to the promotion of equity, including systemic racism and sexism, the adjunctification and corporatization of the profession, how to address inequities exacerbated by the pandemic, and how to reconfigure the discipline. I would hope to foster spaces for talking and listening (with a view to taking appropriateaction) that allow for nuance, understanding, and kindness –they are too important to be left to ‘Trial by Twitter’. I would join with other colleagues in advocating for Classics and the Humanities more broadly where possible. I would bring to my work on the committee a love of the discipline, and a deep commitment to equity and justice.
Walter Mintz Professor of Greek, Latin and Mediterranean Studies Reed College
The primary responsibility of the Professional Ethics Committee is to consider complaints filed with the SCS by individuals against individual Classicists or Classics departments or other groups. We should embrace grievance procedures; as well as a means to repair wrongs, they are one route through which change happens. But they are often painful for all parties, and it is crucial for all concerned that they are managed professionally, and that requires experience and training. I served for seven years as the Dean of Faculty at my institution, our vice president for academic affairs, before stepping downand returning to the faculty in 2020, and in that capacity I received considerable training and acquired a lot of experience with conducting investigations, interviews and hearings (including for Title IX, both before and afterthe most recent changes), managing formal and informal dispute resolutions, drafting grievance policies, and interacting with attorneys. I would be honored to put the experience I have gained in this area to use for the SCS.
A secondary responsibility of the Committee is to encourage discussion around new professional issues and disseminate new or existing standards. At our meetings, we mostly promote research, though we have recently given greater (welcome and overdue) recognition to our teaching. But it is also important that we use these meetings to promote ethical and professional standards that will make our working environments equitable and welcome to everyone, particularly in the context of the watershed changes we are seeing in our profession: continuing increases in the percentage of teaching done by contingent faculty; the fracturing of the hiring calendar and the ease with which the Placement Service can be bypassed as interviews move away from the annual meeting and positions are approved later and later in the year; legislative restrictions on teaching and research; an increase in collaborative work between faculty members and undergraduate and graduate students; and the sheer volume of published scholarship and the new venues in which such publication occurs—to name a few. I am deeply invested in articulating proper conduct in these areas; my most recent book, jointly authored with a professor of medicine, addresses many issues of professional ethics in medicine and academia generally, including mentoring, assessment, self-care, financial interests and political advocacy. I am also deeply committed to our professional societies—I served on the SCS Education Committee 2011-15 and have served as Treasurer and President of the Classical Association of the Pacific Northwest—and I believe that at their best these bodies play a crucial role in helping us come together and share our practices and discoveries. This should be true and can be true in professional ethics also. If elected, as well as carefully attending to the grievances the committee receives, I would want to host sessions at the annual meeting where we can discuss proper ethical practice; searches, chairing departments, mentoring, and collaboration offer four important topics, and there are many others.