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January 18, 2019

It has now been a month since the SCS-AIA annual meeting in San Diego, and many have written evocative, emotional, and important pieces about the racist events that occurred there. Instead of posting each separately on our social media or blog, I have tried to compile as many as I could in this post.

In their own words:

Dan-el Padilla Peralta, “Some thoughts on AIA-SCS 2019,” Medium (January 7, 2019).

----- "SCS 2019: The Future of Classics: Racial Equity and the Production of Knowledge,” Future of Classics Panel (January 5, 2019).

Emma Pettit, “‘My Merit and My Blackness Are Fused to Each Other,” The Chronicle of Higher Education (January 11, 2019).

Follow The Sportula on Twitter or Facebook, learn more about their mission to provide microgrants to classics students in need, and then promote or participate in their new conference: “Naked Soul: A Conference for All of Us.”

"Future of Classics Panel," SCS Meeting in San Diego (Posted February 14, 2019).

Other Reports and Reflections:

Seeta Chaganti, “On Context: AIA-SCS 2019,” Medievalists of Color (January 18, 2019).

Yurie Hong, "Some Concrete Suggestions Post-SCS," Classics and Social Justice (January 19, 2019).

Young Richard Kim, "Luis Alfaro at the Two SCSs," SCS Blog (January 10, 2019).

Rebecca Futo Kennedy, “What Future, Classics?” Classics at the Intersections (January 11, 2019).

Emma Pettit, “After Racist Incidents Mire a Conference, Classicists Point to Bigger Problems,” The Chronicle of Higher Education

Josephine Quinn, “After San Diego: Reflections on Racism in Classics,” Council of University Classical Departments Bulletin 48 (2019).

Donna Zuckerberg, "Racism, Responses, Responsibilities," Eidolon (January 28, 2019).

Official Statements and Policies:

Society for Classical Studies:

SCS Annual Meeting Harassment Statement,” Society for Classical Studies.

Board Statement, “Statement on Racist Acts and Speech at the 2019 SCS Annual Meeting,” Society for Classical Studies (January 6, 2019).

Mary T. Boatwright, “Letter from President Mary T. Boatwright,” Society for Classical Studies.

Other Academic and Professional Groups:

Ancient Philosophy Society (APS), "APS Response to Racist Incidents at SCS 2019," Ancient Philosophy Society (January 15, 2019).

The Black Scholar (TBS), "In Solidarity with Dan-el Padilla Peralta, Djesika Bel Watson, and Stefani Echeverría-Fenna," The Black Scholar (January 31, 2019).

Classical Association of the Midwest and South (CAMWS) Statement (via email): “President Andrew Faulkner would like you to know that CAMWS has begun the process of writing a Code of Professional Conduct at CAMWS Meetings which we hope to have in place before our meeting in Lincoln.”

Columbia University Department of Classics, "Statement on Diversity and Inclusion" (March 2019).

UCLA Department of Classics Statement, "Department Statement on the 2019 AIA – SCS Annual Meeting," UCLA Classics (January 9, 2019).

UNC Department of Classics Statement, "Statement on Racism and Classics," UNC Classics.

UT-Austin Department of Classics Web Statement: "The Department of Classics at the University of Texas at Austin condemns the recent acts of racism at this year's SCS/AIA meetings, and affirms its commitment to inclusivity at all levels. Even as we are aware of the problematic history of our discipline, we are actively working to increase the diversity of our department, and to make the study of the ancient world a more welcoming and equitable field for people of all backgrounds," University of Texas at Austin Department of Classics.

UW Department of Classics Statement, "Departmental Response to Recent Events at the Annual Meeting of the Society for Classical Studies," University of Washington Department of Classics (January 14, 2019).

Nancy Sorkin Rabinowitz and Lisl Walsh, WCC co-chairs, "Letter to the SCS and Response by Mary T. Boatwright," The Women's Classical Caucus (January 13, 2019; January 14, 2019).

Women's Classical Committee (UK), "WCC UK Steering Committee Statement on Events at the 2019 SCS-AIA Meeting," Women's Classical Committee (UK) (January 21, 2019).

Many of you have reached out and asked about the "Future of Classics" video and we assure you that it will be posted on our YouTube channel as soon as we are able to process the videos given to us by the videographer that we hired to film all of the sesquicentennial panels. That should be soon, but we will post an update to this blog and notices on social media as soon as it is posted.

On a more personal level, I will say that while my own reactions and reflections are only ancillary to those made by Prof. Padilla Peralta and The Sportula, I too was incredibly upset by the racist events at the annual meeting. I believe we as a society must commit to sustained engagement in these issues in order to effect change. We must face this head-on and not describe these incidents as anomalous, anecdotal, or due to the mental health of one individual. As Prof. Padilla Peralta stated, “To ascribe racism to an individual pathology is to move the conversation away from where it needs to dwell: the collective pathology of a field that lacks the courage to acknowledge its historical and ongoing inability to value scholars from underrepresented groups.”

Header Image: Roman era mosaic of a woman looking into a mirror, Musée National de Carthage (Image by Fabien Dany via Wikimedia under a CC-BY-SA-2.5 License).

This list was last updated by the author on March 8, 2019.


Sarah Bond is an associate professor of History at the University of Iowa and chair of the SCS Communication Committee. She writes on Roman law, marginal peoples, and ancient geography, and is an associate editor for the Pleiades Project and Co-PI for the digital Big Ancient Mediterranean (BAM) project. Her first book is: Trade and Taboo: Disreputable Professions in the Roman Mediterranean (University of Michigan Press, 2016). You can email her at, follow her on Twitter at @SarahEBond, or see her CV at her blog: