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 on or around August 8. The statements are listed in the order on which they will appear on the ballot.
- Nominating Committee
- Goodwin Committee
- Program Committee
- Vice President for Communications and Outreach
Associate Professor of Classics, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
If elected to serve as an at-large member of the Board of Directors, I would work with officers and other directors to make the SCS and its annual meetings more accessible. Advocating for people with disabilities has been at the heart of my professional service since founding CripAntiquity in 2017. I have also served with the Women’s Classical Caucus and Classics and Social Justice, as well as with the Non-Tenure Faculty Coalition at the University of Illinois as a tenured ally.
The SCS met the extraordinary circumstances of the pandemic by offering virtual or hybrid meetings in 2021-2023. As of this writing, no decision has been made about the format of the 2024 meeting or future meetings, and members may expect to go back to a pre-pandemic normal. For many, this would be a relief, a chance to deepen relationships and further intellectual projects through spontaneous interactions and sustained conversation. At the same time, the virtual and hybrid meetings allowed many others to present and attend who otherwise would not have been able to do so; people without funding to travel (including many graduate students, K-12 teachers, and contingent faculty), those with caring responsibilities, and those with disabilities have benefited from virtual meeting options. As a Director, I would work to understand the financial and other resources associated with making these non-traditional meetings happen and develop a sustainable meeting model that centers the Society’s least privileged members. This might mean continuing to hold hybrid meetings or alternating in-person and virtual meetings.
Whatever happens with meeting modality, I would also lobby the Board to create a set of robust expectations for making the content of the meetings more inclusive. The vast majority of presenters, session chairs, and attendees assume a non-disabled audience. While resources exist for making handouts and slide decks accessible to people with vision impairments and for running q&a sessions that d/Deaf and hard of hearing people can access, the SCS should use its authority to make these and other "best practices" into expected practice.
Ryan C. Fowler, PhD
Research Associate, Franklin & Marshall College and Education Program Marketing Specialist, Gibbs Smith Publishing
Over a 15 year span, I was a non-tenure-track faculty member of three different liberal arts Classics departments. In that time I worked to support other non-t-t faculty through professional development programs, and was consistently invested in the success of my colleagues and other Classics departments. I continued to publish while moving between positions, and I mentored dozens of undergraduates to help them navigate their college experience as well as think about what they might do after graduation.
I recently made a transition to the education publishing industry, and I remain deeply committed to all levels of education, especially child and young adult literacy, specifically through social studies and history. It has occurred to me that during my time as a professor, I was ill equipped to provide students, especially Classics majors, a wide range of options about their future career options. As the field of Classics—and careers in higher education—are transformed (and upended), it has become more important to me to reconsider what careers a classical education might lead to. It seems more important than ever to bring together everyone who has an appreciation of Classics to reconsider what inclusion and belonging might look like.
Alongside my primary focus as a board member to help support and promote all of the missions of SCS (especially its goals of ‘advocacy,’ ‘growth,’ and ‘inclusion’), I would continue to work with Classics students and professors to increase their personal, career, and professional options.
There are several issues that the SCS will have to face in the coming years, beyond the erosion of tenure and the diminishment of faculty positions; for example, the increased equity of meeting virtually, while ensuring meetings still fulfill the various goals and needs of its members.
To this position, then, I would bring a deep appreciation for the study and discipline of Classics that extends beyond the sole goal of becoming a tenured professor of Classics. By emphasizing a wider application of a classical education—spanning the BA to the PhD, and even apart from academia, per se—to a variety of careers and jobs, I would like to continue to advocate for those who want to pursue and support Classics in ways that increase the field’s exposure among a broader and more varied audience.
To that end, I currently collaborate with a professional resume and cover letter writer to support un- and under-employed professors to transition to other kinds of jobs and careers in which they might find greater personal or professional satisfaction, while still being able to maintain their appreciation for their disciplines, including Classics. To help others imagine other types of worthwhile work in which one can apply and enjoy a Classics degree—even if only in the form of an ongoing appreciation for Classics and ancient cultures—would only help strengthen the discipline as a whole.
All of my own goals for this board position, then, follow many of the stated goals of the SCS. In my current position in education publishing, to reassert the importance of K-12 teaching by providing support for improved pedagogy at all levels of teaching. As has been my goal throughout my career, to continue to work to improve working conditions as well as scholarly opportunities for university and college teachers. Finally, to increase communication with audiences beyond its membership, while also making the field of Classics more equitable and diverse, particularly regarding gender, race, and ethnicity
Assistant Professor, Department of Classics, University of Miami, Florida
I am honored to be considered for a position on the Board of Directors of the SCS. The year after my PhD graduation, I began a tenure-track position in which I single-handedly revised, developed, taught, and led a Greek and Roman Studies major program for four years (2017-2020). As I presented on the 2020 SCS Presidential Panel, this situation gave me opportunity to dream and experiment with how a classics program might function outside and beyond its usual associations with cultural elitism, racialized aesthetics, and other enlightenment mythologies. In the process, I expanded my own research to include not only a philological project, but also interdisciplinary work showcasing the provocative resilience of Black visual artists who upend and recreate for themselves the icons and myths of our field. While large-scale COVID cuts interrupted my dreams, terminating classics at that institution and setting many tenure-track faculty adrift, those early career experiences became a catalyst for developing the pragmatic and grounded perspectives on our field which I would bring to the SCS.
I am now in the position of having cultivated extensive experience in program management, curricular design, and the crucial skill of expanding the classics for a wider audience through teaching and research. In addition to running my own program, I have also taught over 24 different courses in our field at public, private, regional, religious, and city universities, and have acquired marketing and business savvy for navigating the world of enrollment numbers and academic administration. As a director-at-large, my focus would be on the incremental, the collective, and the long-term, especially in the following areas: support for those most disempowered in (or by) our profession; an uncompromising insistence on dialogue and diversity; and a continued sharing of resources for program development and sustainability across institutions and programs.
Given the sociopolitical and educational effects of capricious state legislation, perennial budget cuts, uncertain academic freedom, and the rise of AI, a primary concern for the SCS, in my opinion, should be the care for its constituents, particularly those in the most vulnerable programs and positions, whether pre-tenure, non-tenure-track, graduate students, and/or members of underrepresented groups. Having had positive personal experiences with the Classics Advisory Service myself, I would like to reinforce its work, perhaps by facilitating connections and the sharing of best practices from the Communications and Outreach Committees. From 2018-2020, I also served as the chair of the SCS Graduate Student Committee, which has worked to empower graduate students by collating and disseminating resources and supporting the pursuit of employment both within and beyond the tenure-track. I would like to advance these and other initiatives in various Professional Matters Committees by inviting conversation around the mental health needs precipitated by the precarious nature of our academic structures, or by generating ideas about ways that the Program Committee could craft the Annual Meeting into a space of collegial exchange and mutual support. Finally, given the problematic relations across the nation between state legislatures, the university, and K-12 education, I would like to support conversation across the Education Committees about practical ways that we, as educators, can engage in intentional collective action and difficult conversations about the nature and purpose of “classical education” itself.
This upcoming year, I am slated to teach, in the state of Florida, a classics course cross-listed with Africana Studies and backed by our new Center for Global Black Studies. The irony of my situation is not lost on me. I can only hope that, if I am elected, my experience and perspectives will help me serve the SCS and lead our field towards a more resilient, socially engaged, and reimagined future. Thank you for considering me for election.
Celia E. Schultz
Professor of Classical Studies and History, University of Michigan
Higher education in North America is at an inflection point, and the role of professional organizations, including the SCS, is changing. As part of the Board of Directors, I will contribute to defining the role the SCS plays in the professional lives of its members. We face some very big questions: what benefits should membership provide now as we emerge from the pandemic, and what will members need from the SCS going forward? What more can we do to support those teaching at the k-12 level and those who are perhaps the only Classicist on their campuses? How can we attract and retain as members the increasing number of Classicists who earn their living outside of academia? Why do we gather as a community, in what format, and how often? How can the SCS stake a place for itself in the broader rethinking of the humanities that is happening in academia now?
Part of the answer to each of these questions is making the SCS as welcoming and inclusive an organization as can be. There is strength in numbers and wisdom in hearing multiple voices. In service assignments over the course of my career, I have prioritized recognition of the full diversity of our field: not just by the measures of gender, racial, and ethnic diversity, but also by subfield, geography, type of institution, and life / career stage. I have a range of leadership experience within the SCS (Committee on Ancient History; the Committee for the Status of Women and Minority Groups and its successor, the Committee on Gender and Sexuality in the Profession; Nominating Committee; and in an ex officio capacity, Placement and Professional Matters) as well as with several affiliated organizations (the Society for Ancient Mediterranean Religion, the American Academy in Rome, and the Women’s Classical Caucus), and on my own campus. As Chair of COGSIP, I successfully pushed for finer-grained demographic data gathering which has helped to sharpen the picture of who our membership is. To promote equity and inclusion, I have also worked to foster conversation between groups that do not usually talk to one another, hence my simultaneous stints on the Committee on Ancient History (now defunct) and the Women’s Classical Caucus Steering Committee that resulted in a jointly sponsored panel on the underrepresentation of women in the field of ancient history. During my time on the Nominating Committee, we strived to increase inclusivity by seeking candidates from schools that were not Ph.D.-granting institutions on the east coast, from departments of English, History, Comparative Literature, and others where Classicists might reside, and from colleagues at every stage of career.
Deedee McMurtry Professor in the Humanities, Rice University
I am a longstanding member of SCS and have attended its annual conference for over two decades now. I value the society and the conference enormously: the latter has introduced me to scholarship that has had an enormous impact on my work, and to people who have become interlocutors, collaborators, and friends. I stand for the Nominating Committee because of the opportunity it provides to contribute to a professional society that I value so highly. My principal commitment will be to promoting diversity among the varied committees of the SCS. Gender and race will be a primary focus: it is absolutely vital that the discipline continue to make strides in these areas, because diversity and the variety of perspectives that it brings are a sine qua non for disciplinary health. In addition, I will support and seek to bring about representation from a wide range of institutions. A tight job market has, paradoxically, spread academic and administrative talent far and wide. It is crucial to be aware of that reality and to cast a very wide net in searching for committee members: this will help to ensure that a broad range of constituents are represented in the SCS, including those from R-1 schools, liberal arts colleges, state universities, and community colleges.
My work as a researcher has put me in a good position to serve on the Nominating Committee. As the editor of several book volumes and of two monograph series, and as an active participant in and organizer of conferences and workshops, I have been and continue to be in contact with a significant range of people in the field, across a number of sub-disciplines. If elected to the Nominating Committee, I will draw on my wide familiarity with those in the field, and will work hard to broaden what I know, in order to produce slates of candidates who reflect and represent a diverse range of backgrounds, affiliations, and interests.
Associate Professor of Ancient History, Arizona State University
I have been a member of the SCS for over fifteen years and am honored to be nominated for the opportunity to serve the organization on the Nominating Committee. I have previously served on the Diversity Committee for the Association of Ancient Historians and have been treasurer for the Central Arizona chapter of the Archaeological Institute of America since 2014.
To me, the Nominating Committee should be focused on ensuring the nomination of candidates who represent the best of the field in terms of expanding our notions of what Classics can be, as well as on creating the future that we want to see. That means highlighting Classicists from historically underrepresented and minoritized communities, but also those utilizing a wide array of methodologies and theoretical approaches that promise to enliven Classics and the humanities more broadly. It is also important that we see representation from all walks of academic life, including career-track faculty, SLAC faculty, and independent scholars. At the same time, we want these nominations to be genuinely equitable in the sense of taking into account scholars’ existing commitments and working with them so as not to burden them with undue labor.
Assistant Professor, Department of Classics, University of Washington, Seattle
My experience in the field of Classics has been shaped by our contemporary circumstances and my own Asian American identity. I received my PhD from the University of California, Berkeley, in 2019, accepting a position as a Visiting Assistant Professor at Tulane University the same year. I became an Assistant Professor at the University of Washington in the fall of 2020, moving to Seattle. One might assume that this was an inopportune time to begin a faculty career due to the emergence of the COVID-19 pandemic, but I found the transition to remote events, which offered abundant opportunities to connect with scholars at other institutions, energizing. I was a co-founder of the Asian and Asian American Classical Caucus (AAACC) in 2019, becoming the inaugural President of the organization, a position that evolved into that of Co-Chair in 2021. My role in the AAACC has enabled me to befriend the leadership of other organizations, including Eos, Hesperides, the Lambda Classical Caucus, the Mountaintop Coalition, and the Women’s Classical Caucus. I have also served on the SCS Communications Committee for the past two years. I am proud of the contributions to the SCS blog that I have solicited in this role.
I hope to use the connections that I have made as a Co-Chair of the AAACC to increase the diversity of the candidates running for elected positions in the SCS. I have experience in this area from organizing the AAACC officer elections in 2021. I made sure that the AAACC had a compelling roster of candidates representing a range of career stages. Diversity is crucially important to me, as my service both in our field and in my own department, where I have been a member of the DEI committee since beginning my position, attests. I am excited to see how the SCS evolves over the course of my career, and I would welcome the opportunity to contribute to this evolution by serving on the Nominating Committee. I would be committed to finding candidates from a variety of backgrounds, who could lead the field of Classics into an exciting future!
Professor at the University of Chicago Divinity School and Department of Classics.
It is an honor to be nominated to the Goodwin Award Committee of the SCS. I have been a member of the SCS for twenty years and have recently served in its Annual Fund Committee (2020-2023). Most relevant for this task, for decades I have peer-reviewed books and articles for academic presses, ranked research projects for national and international organizations, and read tenure and promotion cases, most of which involve the evaluation of monographs. The present Committee is a unique opportunity to closely read recent outstanding monographs representing a wide variety of sub-disciplines and approaches, at a time when the field is more dynamic and inclusive than ever as it engages crucial disciplinary, social, and historical questions.
I have authored books and articles on Greek and Near Eastern mythologies and religions, Greek and Phoenician historical and economic relations, and cultural exchange in the archaic Mediterranean from Iberia to the Levant. My work brings the study of the Classical world into conversation with that of the broader Mediterranean and the Near East, and thus contributes to a more diverse and historically contextualized view of the ancient world that does not revolve around the Greco-Roman axis. I would bring to the committee a long academic experience of conducting research across disciplines, geographical areas, and methodologies (literature and linguistics, historiography, epigraphy, archaeology) and an appreciation for rigorous and innovative work, big questions, and ambitious projects that expand the limitations of disciplinary boundaries.
S. Douglas Olson
Distinguished McKnight University Professor of Classical and Near Eastern Religions and Cultures, University of Minnesota
My own work is intensely traditional, but also pointedly and deliberately progressive. I build texts, which means that I spend a great deal of time thinking about manuscript stemmata, variant readings, metrical issues and the like. But my more substantial interest is in producing commentaries, which I regard as resembling guidebooks to a curious and complicated place, in that their larger goal is not just to offer information about the immediate circumstances but to train the reader’s eye. My own deeper concerns, embedded in various ways in the notes I produce, have to do with intersections of language, power and tradition; with built human environments; and with the natural world and how we interact with and alter it. Details about the offices and editorial positions I have held, the projects in which I am involved, and my publications can be found on the Academia.edu page for I have provided a link below.
Like many institutions today, the SCS is grappling with what it is and what it wants to be, in the awareness that we are collectively and individually both complicit in the current state of affairs in the world and capable of partially restoring it. Classical studies is in a particularly interesting situation in this regard, since our primary material is rooted in the ancient past and we demand fidelity to it while simultaneously insisting on its relevance to modern issues. The Goodwin Committee is charged with identifying some of the best recent work in the field. Fundamentally, that means attempting to articulate who we are and ought to be, by pointing to exemplary scholarship that shapes and interrogates the past in an effort to build a future. When I look for Goodwin Award winners, I will be particularly attentive to work that combines open, contemporary ways of viewing the past with close, faithful attention to the primary evidence.
Professor of Greek, University College London
I am honoured to have been asked by the Nominating Committee to put my name forward for the Goodwin Award Committee. I would bring to the committee the perspective of someone who has taught at universities in the US and the UK. My research has been mainly in cross-cultural studies and in the classical tradition, and I’ve written about ancient literature and cultural and intellectual history. I’ve been the general editor of a book series, Ancients & Moderns (published by Bloomsbury), and in that capacity I’ve read the books we’ve published and many other manuscripts: I have a lot of experience in reviewing and evaluating books from an editor’s perspective. I frequently read manuscripts for presses, journals, and colleagues, and I’ve written a couple of monographs, edited many volumes, and contributed a translation to Penguin Classics.
It’s wonderful that for some years now the committee has been able to select three books (rather than just one) for the award. I would, of course, try to be an open-minded and fair reader of submissions. I am interested in new books that exemplify the vibrancy and diversity of ancient studies, but I don’t hold a brief for any particular kind of book. The world of scholarship has no passports, and we should celebrate the best in humanistic learning wherever it comes from. I would be eager to learn about exciting new work in ancient studies and to promote first-rate scholarship across a wide range of areas.
Link to profile: https://www.ucl.ac.uk/classics/people/academic-staff/phiroze-vasunia
Anthon Professor of the Latin Language and Literature, Columbia University
Qualifications: the experience that I bring to the election process for the Committee on the C. J. Goodwin Award of Merit lies, on the research side, in my interests and publication record in a number of different areas. I have published books on Augustan poetry (especially Ovid), Seneca’s philosophical prose, and Renaissance humanism. I have also published books in different formats (commentary, literary criticism, annotated translation, a book for the wider public). This diversity of research areas and kinds of publication hopefully signals an open-minded versatility of outlook that would be a good fit for the mission of the Goodwin Committee. I have also served for many years as a referee for classical journals, a reader for multiple academic presses, an associate editor handling submissions in Latin literature for The American Journal of Philology, a book reviews editor for Classical World, and classics editor-in-chief of Oxford Handbooks Online. These different involvements have exposed me to many diverse forms of scholarly endeavor, methodology, and output, hopefully equipping me with a breadth of experience that can contribute meaningfully to the work of the Goodwin Committee.
Aspirations: classics is blessed with a natural diversity of scholarly fields, and the work of the Goodwin Committee offers a powerful means of displaying and celebrating that richness. I admire well-written scholarship of high quality across many different formats/areas, and I would hope to bring to the Goodwin Committee an openness not just to different scholarly fields, but also to diverse kinds of critical approach. I think it equally important to reflect on how our discipline communicates with other areas of the humanities (and beyond), and how the field of classics can continue to evolve in exciting new ways while still preserving its traditional strengths. In this respect, the Goodwin Committee has an important role to play in offering an annual reflection of the state of the field and the kinds of research that are shaping it. If elected, I would strive to contribute to this important mission in a scrupulously fair and open-minded way.
Naomi T. Campa
Assistant Professor of Classics, The University of Texas at Austin
The SCS annual meeting is and should continue to be the flagship meeting for our profession; this is no small ambition. To meet this goal, the program must reflect the very best and the greatest range of our field. In brief, to maintain excellence I would aim to be inclusive of all subfields and perspectives, from the mainstream to the margins, so that scholars from across classics look forward to multiple sessions on the program. The sessions available should also meet the needs of scholars in different stages of their careers. The committee in the past few years has commendably worked to provide transparency in the programming process and to develop new types of formats. I would help to continue that essential work by (1) building on the electronic resources they have created, (2) hosting a virtual or in-person session on best practices for first-time applicants, and (3) re-evaluating the current presentation formats and their purposes in order to communicate them to the membership and to craft a successful program for diverse participants at all career stages.
I have been an SCS member and regular annual meeting attendee since 2008. My professional service at the departmental and national levels has developed my abilities to work in an organized, timely, and effective manner with a diverse group of classicists. As LCC co-chair and Mountaintop Coalition steering committee member, I frequently coordinate scholarly and social events, such as the WCC/LCC paper prize winner reading group, that require collaboration with our own members and other organizations. Separately from formal obligations, I created the “Pachanga Latina: A Meet and Greet for Hispanic/Latinx Faculty and Graduate Students” at the SCS meeting. Within my subfield, I have written book reviews, and I have refereed articles and book proposals. My own work has been presented to a variety of audiences, such as classicists, political scientists, and non-specialists. Participating in conferences in other fields has shown me variability in what we take to be the necessary elements of programming. I have also organized panels, managed events, and am currently editing a volume, all of which include approaches and methodologies vastly different from my own. While I have not served on an SCS committee before, I would bring a practiced professionalism and an open-minded approach to the appointment. The purpose of the program committee is to showcase high quality scholarship in all subfields of classics, a mission I would be honored to support and promote.
Aileen R. Das
Associate Professor of Classical Studies; Affiliate in Judaic Studies, Middle East Studies, and History, University of Michigan-Ann Arbor
As a classicist from minoritized backgrounds (race, gender, and class) who studies subjects still considered marginal to the field, I am committed to fostering practices that create horizontal power structures – whether in the classroom, at the university level, or wider discipline – and thus embrace multiple visions of what ancient studies is/can be. To this end, I have served on the SCS’s Committee for Diversity in the Profession and at my home institution participated in outreach programs such as the Michigan Humanities Emerging Research Scholars Program (MICHHERS) and currently stand as a senator in our faculty assembly, which has worked this year to expand its membership to include non-tenure track staff (e.g., lecturers, archivists, and librarians). Furthermore, during my time both on the executive committee and as director of Michigan’s Interdepartmental Program in Ancient History (IPAH), I helped to shepherd in reforms that empowered graduate students to pursue more global approaches to antiquity, through language training in, e.g., Arabic, Coptic, Syriac, and Sanskrit, and gave them a say in how their language competencies should be assessed, through, e.g., coursework or exams based on collaboratively curated reading-lists.
While I am encouraged by the more expansive directions in which the annual meeting’s program has gone over the past few years, contributions that seek to provincialize Greco-Roman antiquity or disrupt normative pedagogies – usually from junior, untenured, or ‘alternative academic’ scholars – tend to be ghettoized into separate panels. This segregation reduces the visibility and thus impact of such challenges to dominant orthodoxies in the field. If I were to be elected to the Program Committee, my agenda would be to advocate for panels that include papers on traditional topics or approaches as well as those seeking to articulate alternatives to these disciplinary centers. My hope would be that such a redesign would also promote more diverse representation in terms of the participants’ rank, relation to academia, and background.
Assistant Professor, Department of Classics, The Ohio State University
The annual meeting can be a valuable opportunity to develop new projects and to meet potential collaborators. When proposers organize their own sessions, they assemble a cohesive set of papers and prepare to engage presenters and attendees in discussion focused on shared questions and concerns. We should work towards a meeting that is primarily made up of sessions organized by proposers (including panels, workshops, and seminars), rather than a program dominated by individual abstracts chosen by SCS officers. It is true that the requirement to find collaborators for a session in advance can be more burdensome and exclusive than submitting an individual abstract. One way to address this challenge is through the annual meeting itself. All participants in a session—presenters, attendees, and moderators—have the opportunity to meet one another and build their networks for future projects, such as proposals for the annual meeting. The guidelines for panel, seminar, and workshop proposals already require organizers to “explain plans for incorporating discussion into the session,” and the program committee should select for proposals which are thoughtful about structuring inclusive discussion. Moderators assigned by the SCS to a panel should be directed to consider the same issues and given clear guidelines to help them to do so.
I have ample experience organizing panels and workshops for the SCS annual meeting and at other conferences, especially through my work with Eos: Africana Receptions of Ancient Greece and Rome (eosafricana.org), an affiliate of the SCS which I co-founded in 2017. I have moderated and co-organized in-person panels, online events (e.g., Eos READS for Black Lives, 2020) and a multi-day hybrid interdisciplinary conference (Mother’s Milk: Breastfeeding from Metaphor to Practice, 2022). I have extensive experience in professional service both at a large R1 and at an undergraduate-focused institution. I would draw on this experience to build a program that helps scholars and students to find intellectual community at the annual meetings.
Stephanie Ann Frampton
Associate Professor of Classical Literature, Co-Chair of the Program in Ancient and Medieval Studies, MIT
I am honored to be nominated to serve on the Program Committee. As an interdisciplinary humanist and a wide-ranging scholar of antiquity and the classical tradition, I have always placed enormous value on making connections within broader academic communities. I bring to the SCS a decade-long background in leadership and program building within scholarly organizations. I recently completed a three-year term as Secretary-Treasurer of the American Society for Greek and Latin Epigraphy (ASGLE), where I contributed to planning the third North American Congress of Greek and Latin Epigraphy (NACGLE). I served as Chair of the Organizing Committee of the 2009 Annual Meeting of the American Comparative Literature Association (ACLA), a conference comparable in scale to the SCS, with more than 2,500 participants from over 30 countries. In 2017, after a successful collaborative application for a $1,000,000 Mellon Foundation grant, I was elected the inaugural President of the newly-created Society of Fellows in Critical Bibliography (SoFCB), hosting an annual meeting the following year in Charlottesville. And with fellow SCS member Joseph Howley, I was co-convener of a regular workshop on material texts in antiquity, organizing annual meetings in New York and Boston from 2016 to 2019.
I am committed to making the SCS’s annual meeting a stimulating, inclusive, and content-rich event for all members. This means building on the important recent efforts to broaden the foundations of equity and inclusion in the study of the ancient world. However, the fact that not all of us are able to travel to the conference each year, if at all, presents significant challenges to our collective aims of accessibility. If elected to the Program Committee, I would see it as my goal to work with SCS leadership to continue to develop a strategic plan for inclusive digital and hybrid programming, such as live-streaming of plenary events from the annual meeting and hosting off-cycle virtual events by and for members throughout the year. In addition, my experience working with ASGLE has confirmed that it is essential that we embrace the rich interdisciplinarity of our membership, ranging from literary critics and digital humanists to archaeologists and historians. This means exploring the dual challenges of (1) working more closely with the AIA to better harmonize our meeting calendars and (2) better coordinating and tracking the scheduling of SCS panels within related fields. To echo current Program Committee member Caroline Stark’s words, our goal should be to make the SCS meeting a highlight of every member’s academic year—regardless of their ability to attend in person and no matter their institutional affiliation, rank, and discipline.
Associate Professor of Classics, Texas Tech University
My experience as a classicist housed in a foreign languages department at a large state university has fostered my dedication to broadening the dialogues shaping our field. Within the discipline, my most relevant qualifications to serve on the SCS Program Committee include: Editor of Helios, Book Review Editor for AJP, and reviewer for a variety of journals and presses. Beyond the confines of the field, I have also served as Associate Director and member of the Board of Directors of the Humanities Center at my institution, which has a robust fellowship program, including an annual visiting scholar, and which organizes a year-long set of activities, culminating in a national, multidisciplinary conference. I have served as a reviewer for all of these activities, and, through this experience I have become familiar with a very broad set of approaches within the Humanities writ large. While my main scholarly interests remain firmly rooted in the study of archaic Greek poetry, I have published much more broadly on subjects from Latin poetry to Steely Dan, all with an eye toward participating in larger, critical debates, such as feminism, scholarly activism, embodiment and media theory.
From these experiences, I have learned the value of breadth of approach and multidisciplinarity, both of which would drive my work as a member of the Program Committee. In particular, I think it is central for our field to participate in as many large-scale debates as possible, and to feature as many different voices as possible in doing so. Further, I believe this inclusivity must flow from the perspective of collaboration and common struggle, not because I seek relevance for our field, but because I would like to see our field as a true partner in these scholarly revolutions rather than an exceptional outlier. However, I do not believe we can participate in these debates with full partnership if we do not also bring our particular tools and materials to the table; therefore, we must continue to feature the nuts-and-bolts scholarship that undergirds so much of our field. Our contribution to and full participation in these larger debates hinges on this duality, inherent to all disciplines. But, more importantly, this duality also enables us to transcend our field, even as it opens up participation from outside the confines of our traditional purview.
Assistant Professor, College of the Holy Cross
I have been a member of SCS since 2010 and I am thrilled to stand for election to the program committee. I believe that the annual meeting serves as a touchstone for the discipline of classics in the United States – the event and its programming offers crucial insight into past, present, and future(s) of the field. The last few meetings have highlighted the manifold tensions in those different temporalities. Indeed, we have seen the discipline’s historical white supremacism rear its head in the very moments in which we have sought to celebrate the entrance of long-excluded voices into the field. If elected to the programming committee, I would work to develop an inclusive, vibrant, and forward-thinking program that not only enables but empowers all those who want to participate to do so. In moving towards these goals, I would work to develop further programming space for those who have been historically excluded from the discipline, to sure up funding for contingent faculty, graduate students, and others facing economic hardship, and finally to continue to support the needs of all of our attendees.
I see myself as well-suited for such a position for a number of reasons. First is my strong interest in and efforts towards creating a more diverse field. I have served on the SCS Committee on Diversity in the Profession as well as on the steering committee for the Mountaintop Coalition and I currently chair the diversity committees for the Association of Ancient Historians and the Classical Association in New England. In each of these roles, I have been particularly active in advocating for forward-looking programming that is attuned to offering a broader and more capacious vision of classics. Beyond this service work, I have written on how racial, gender, and education-based hierarchies have imprinted themselves on publication in the field of classics. I hope to bring this awareness of our field's entanglements with these structures of power to construct a more diverse annual program and provide new ways of seeing and studying the ancient world. Finally, I have a broad array of scholarly interests - I have published and delivered talks on various aspects of Roman Republican history, Latin prose literature, numismatics, Africana and Asian receptions of the ancient world, classics in video games, and language pedagogy.
Nathan A. Greenberg Professor of Classics, Oberlin College
I am honored and humbled to have been nominated for the office of President of the SCS.
Experience: I have taught in our field for a little under 30 years, and have served in the usual administrative posts for someone at my stage in their career: I’ve chaired my department, served on the committees that oversee tenure and promotions, curriculum, research and development, etc. at Oberlin. In the 2000’s I fulfilled a double-term on what was then the Committee on the Status of Women and Minority Groups (CSWMG) of the APA (now SCS), with two years as Chair; that six year stint was an education for me on the demographic makeup of our field, which remains an urgent concern. I’ve also served on the Board of the SCS, as well as the Executive Committee of the American School for Classical Studies in Athens. I am a life member of both the WCC and LCC. Since 2001, I have run the John J. Winkler prize competition. I have a broad view of our field and some of the challenges it faces.
My secret superpower is that I briefly left academia altogether (1997-2001), during which time I worked in private industry as a project manager. That career move didn’t stick. But in those four years I learned a good deal about the world outside of the academy, how businesses work, how to manage a budget, and how to run an effective meeting. I’ve been leaning on that experience ever since, and I think those skills would serve well if I were to be elected.
Goals: As I see it, the SCS needs to address two challenges, one short-term and practical, and the other long-term and difficult. First, the SCS itself is in a state of transition. Our annual meeting used to be, among other things, the primary job market in the field. That is no longer the case, as most preliminary interviews have moved to Zoom or Skype. And with the advent of on-line conferences, hastened by the Covid-19 crisis, we will need to spend the next five years figuring out how we are going to run our annual meeting, and what the purpose of the meeting will be. This is a moment of real possibility, as well as risk. The idea of an in-person conference that is unencumbered by the desperations of interview committees is, at least in part, genuinely appealing. We have an opportunity to create a conference that provides forums for productive, exciting exchange of ideas. But we will need to make sure that we are still providing oversight of the job market in order to ensure that it is being run ethically. And we will need to present an annual program that provides venues for bold new research, and more importantly, that moves the field into new areas.
Second, we need to push the field of Classics to realize its potential – so far, vastly unachieved – as an interdisciplinary, cross-cultural and antiracist discipline. We have made some progress in this direction, even if maddeningly slow. Though this statement may come as a surprise to some, the field is better now than when I started for scholars who are women, queer, trans(*), racial or ethnic minorities. We need to capitalize on the small gains that we have made in these areas, and increase the rate of change. I pull up short at the point of wanting to burn the profession down. But there is no doubt that we must transform the field, radically, if we want to become the progressive organization that we should be.
Here are some depressing numbers from the National Center for Education Statistics, by way of example: in 2019-20 (the most recent published data), women made up 58% of the BA’s in Classics nationwide. They made up 45% of the MA’s, and 43% of the PhD’s. In fact the percentage of women in the field has barely moved in the past 40 years, hovering around 42-44%; the NCES statistics show clearly where the filter point is. The numbers for underrepresented minorities are even worse, despite some recent modest gains. When faced with these entrenched results, we must realize that change will require constant concerted effort, and recognize that it will come about in fits and starts, moments of apparent revolution followed by a series of slow shifts.
But it is not just a question of attracting underrepresented populations into our classrooms as graduate students and tenured professors. As Angela Davis recently put it, “Are you simply going to ask those who have been marginalized or subjugated to come inside of the institution and participate in the same process that led precisely to their marginalization? Diversity and inclusion without substantive change, without radical change, accomplishes nothing.” We need to accomplish both at once: we need to change the field as well as supporting candidates who have not traditionally participated in it. That means changes both at the operational level (training, hiring, promotion, tenure) and on the conceptual front. We need to rethink both what “Classics” is and what it is for: if we fail, we will become a tool for the white nationalist groups who are already appropriating our subject matter. In the best of all possible worlds, I believe that the field of ancient Mediterranean studies could be a force for antiracist, feminist and queer-friendly progressive work.
How do we bring about that set of changes? That is a question I have been posing, to myself and others, for most of my career, and it would be dishonest to suggest that I could effect such sweeping changes, even from the position of the Presidency. I can only promise that these are the issues that will be my primary concern, should I be elected.
Professor of Classical Studies, Boston University
I have been nominated to stand for the presidency of the Society for Classical Studies, and it is a tremendous honor to do so. Every stage of my career has been shaped or made possible in some way by parts of the SCS. Some of my earliest interactions with other scholars were at the SCS Annual Meeting; I published an early article in TAPA; and like so many, I looked to the Placement Service when seeking my first job. Nowadays I help my own PhD students do these same things for themselves, and the vital role of the SCS in their careers has never been more clear. We need the SCS to support and protect our members, to help programs that are threatened by short-sighted administrators, and to ensure that our discipline remains as welcome, accessible, and diverse as it can possibly be. I would work hard to advance all these goals.
Currently I serve as the chair of the Classical Studies department at Boston University. During my time as chair, I led the department’s most successful fundraising campaign in recent history, which drew more funds to Classics than to any other department in the college. I created a series of networking events (‘Careers after Classics’), in which alumni addressed undergraduate majors and graduate students about the paths their lives had taken after their degrees. These events served as a reminder of the real value our texts and ideas have to people’s lives, and the need to communicate that value sensitively and effectively to the wider public.
My scholarly work has been grounded in the close reading of Latin and Greek but has expanded over time to encompass a variety of different interests: travel literature, the Gothic novel, the history of medicine. The recent announcement that studies in reception will be indexed by the American office of L'Année philologique (https://classicalstudies.org/scs-news/reception-studies-aph) is one welcome example of the field pushing to the center what might once have been at the margins. This is an exciting time for all of us to push at the boundaries of what “Classics” can and should mean.
I have also been heavily involved in language teaching and advising in my career, and during COVID created a new online event that brought together ancient and modern language teachers from across my university, in order to highlight the benefits of language learning to incoming students. As I’ve learned through these and other events, we need to learn what we can from the pedagogical techniques being developed in modern language classrooms, and making that possible through workshops, grants, and events would be a priority as president of the SCS.
Outreach to the secondary level is another important part of my work here in Boston, and I would be eager to carry that forward as president of the SCS. We often have high school teachers to thank for sparking the interest of our students in the ancient world – or for sparking our own interest. Equally important, though, is introducing the ancient world to students who don’t have the resources or opportunities to encounter Latin or the ancient world in their schools. One way to increase diversity and representation in our field is to inspire excitement about antiquity among students from underrepresented backgrounds before they reach college. I would do my best to nurture links between with teachers or high school Latin within our organization, and lend support to efforts to bring antiquity to young audiences, including the ongoing Ancient World, Modern Communities initiative.
Previously I served for four years on the SCS Committee on Gender and Sexuality in the Profession, and was chair of that committee in 2020. As well as advocating for resources relating to childcare at the SCS and organizing a series of panels on LGBTQ+ experiences in the discipline, I oversaw the creation of a report (cowritten by the committee members) to accompany the release of data from our first survey of harassment and discrimination in the discipline (https://classicalstudies.org/about/scs-newsletter-may-2019-harassment-survey). That survey shed light on the prevalence of harassment as a problem in our field: 48.9% of respondents reported experiencing harassment at some point in their careers. Since it will soon be five years since that survey was taken, it is time to gather new data (potentially in collaboration with the new SCS Data Committee), to respond to the survey’s findings with fresh energy, and to explore new ways to ensure that all feel safe in our field.
Alongside continuing questions about diversity and inclusion, fundraising, and adapting to AI and other sorts of technological change, we also need in the coming years to grapple with questions about our Annual Meeting. The discontinuation of job interviews at the event should theoretically give both jobseekers and hiring committees more time to enjoy papers and see each other – and yet traveling to the SCS is so difficult and expensive that many members struggle to justify going at all. This year we also faced challenges with hybrid functionality, despite the great efforts of Helen and her team on the ground.
In order to make the event as accessible as possible, my preference is for the hybrid format to continue, but we need to reduce the number of papers in each session to allow time to transition between presentation modes, and to ensure that IT Support is ready and present at each panel. I see our current crossroads as a time of opportunity. We are well placed to redefine and recreate the annual meeting as a vital, vibrant event that maximizes participation for all.
I hope to serve the Society and its members with passion and dedication, and look forward to giving back to the SCS through this service. Thank you for your consideration.
T. H. M. Gellar-Goad
Associate Professor of Classics, Wake Forest University
Experiences and qualifications:
I am currently finishing the final year as Editor-in-Chief of the SCS Blog and chair of the SCS Communications Committee. I have been a member of the Communications Committee since 2015, and was one of the inaugural columnists for the SCS Blog. As Communications Committee chair, I have assembled the most diverse and intersectional membership since the committee’s founding. Under my editorship, the Blog has started a new series In Dialogue. Trans Studies and Classics; published posts about equity and inclusion in recruitment, diversifying Classics, and the experience of studying ancient enslavement as a descendant of enslaved people; continued the Contingent Faculty series; and published a guide to disability theory in the study of the ancient world.
Aims if elected:
As VP for Comms & Outreach, I will develop a series of virtual panels and workshops centered on writing for public audiences, developing a profile as a public scholar, using social media to share and gain knowledge about the ancient world, and engaging with audiences outside the profession. I will endeavor to set up a formal system whereby SCS members can get media training and find out about opportunities for Classics consulting gigs in media. I'll also work with the next SCS Blog Editor-in-Chief to continue the successes built by Sarah E. Bond during her term running the Blog, which I hope I've upheld in my own term; I'll support the efforts of the Outreach Prize Committee and the Committee on Classics in the Community; and I'll collaborate with the members of the Committee on Public Information and Media Relations to refocus its mission and to evaluate the future of the Forum Prize.
Carlos F. Noreña
Professor of History and Ancient History & Mediterranean Archaeology, University of California, Berkeley
We are going through a difficult moment. Threats to Classics, to the Humanities, and to the whole structure of higher education in North America have become acute. The Society for Classical Studies should be contributing to and shaping the urgent conversations that these threats demand. In light of these circumstances, I would take up this position, if elected, with two priorities. The first would be to highlight the remarkable scholarship that our members continue to produce, from the magna opera of senior scholars to the exciting first publications of our early career researchers. The quality of this work speaks for itself, but it is essential that we communicate it publicly and systematically, through blogs, podcasts, op-eds, and other public-facing media. Our scholarship is our best argument for the continued relevance and vitality of Classics and the Humanities more generally. My second priority would be to mobilize the visibility and prestige of the SCS to address the ongoing crisis of academic precarity in our fields. Structural changes in the academic labor market, together with recent attacks on tenure in several state legislatures, represent an existential threat to everything we do. The SCS needs to address these problems head on. The Communications and Outreach Division cannot do this work alone, of course, but should play a central role in what must be a collective effort.
Several parts of my professional background are relevant to this position. For the SCS, I have served on the Program Committee (2020-2023), which has given me experience with organizing and promoting the latest research of our members. I am currently serving as the Chair of the Advisory Council on Classical Studies for the American Academy in Rome, a position in which outreach is key. On my own campus, I am part of the Letters & Science Futures Committee (2023—), charged with overhauling breadth requirements for all undergraduates in the college. This work helps me to think ambitiously and strategically about the values and principles of humanistic learning, broadly conceived. Finally, I have been active on social media over the last several years, which has equipped me with some understanding of the peculiar dynamics of a sphere that has emerged (for better or for worse) as one of the “front lines” in shaping the public discourse around scholarship and higher education.