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The message below was sent to all APA members for whom we have a valid e-mail address on January 20, 2012.
Our joint annual meeting just completed in Philadelphia attracted over 3,000 registrants—one of our largest meetings ever. Daniel Mendelsohn got us off to a wonderful start by movingly reminding us why we devote our lives to the study of classical antiquity. Kathleen Coleman’s Presidential Panel entitled “Images for Classicists” showed us new ways to carry out our work, and new initiatives from the Program Committee improved both the presentations at sessions and the discussions they stimulated. And to judge from the number of institutions conducting interviews through the Placement Service, even the job market (knock on wood) was improved over the last two years. All these efforts produced an energy that carried over to the book display, the CAMP performance, and, of course, the receptions. I look forward to working with you to maintain that energy during my Presidency.
Search for Editor of Transactions of the American Philological Association
Professor Katharina Volk has indicated her intention to complete her term as Editor at the 2014 Annual Meeting. The Editor, who must be a member in good standing of the Association, is initially appointed for four years, with the possibility of extension for a maximum of two additional years. The new editor's term officially begins in January 2014 and will cover volumes 144-147 and the years 2014-2017. As Editor Designate, however, the new editor will begin to receive submissions in early 2013 and spend the summer and fall of that year preparing the 2014 issues for the press. Professor Volk will complete the two issues for the year 2013.
The editor of TAPA has sole responsibility for editorial content, and must acknowledge submissions, select referees, and inform authors whether submissions have been accepted. In addition, the editor must work closely with the journals division of Johns Hopkins University Press, which typesets, produces and distributes each issue. A lively interest in the future of scholarly publishing in the digital age will be a welcome qualification.
"Latin is a bit like a zombie: dead but still clamoring to get into our brains. In one discipline, however, Latin just got a bit deader. For at least 400 years, botanists across the globe have relied on Latin as their lingua franca, but the ardor has cooled. Scientists say plants will keep their double-barreled Latin names, but they have decided to drop the requirement that new species be described in the classical language. Instead, they have agreed to allow botanists to use English (other languages need not apply). In their scientific papers, they can still describe a newly found species of plant — or algae or fungi — in Latin if they wish, but most probably won’t."
Read more online at The Washington Post.
"A university professorship which has been dormant for more than a decade is to be revived after a £2.4m bequest from the last person to hold the post. Professor Douglas Maurice MacDowell held Glasgow University's Chair of Greek between 1971 and 2001. After his death in 2010, aged 78, Prof MacDowell's will stated his portfolio of stocks and shares be used to re-establish the position. The new Chair of Greek is expected to be in place for September this year." Read more at the BBC online.
From the Truman State University Index:
"Despite its small numbers, the classics department remains alive even though their languages are ancient. There are 19 declared classics majors, five of whom will graduate this year, 27 minors and four full-time staff members, said Clifton Kreps, classical and modern language department chair. The Missouri Department of Higher Education reviewed all programs with fewer than 10 graduates a year during Fall 2010. Truman State thus was required to provide a written justification and answer a questionnaire regarding enrollment data for the small number of graduates in classics, along with art history, Russian, German, interdisciplinary studies and bachelors of music. The explanation satisfied the MDHE for the time being, but another review is scheduled for 2014. No further information regarding the format or consequences of the next review has been provided to the University."
Adam Kirsch reviews Rome: Day One, Rome and Rhetoric, The Romans and Their World, Caligula, Invisible Romans, and Rome: A Cultural, Visual, and Personal History in the January 9th issue of The New Yorker. An abstract of the review is available online for free; subscribers have full access.
"You might not think that a collaboration to study the chemical and physical properties of ancient Attic pottery would have anything to do with space missions, but, well, you'd be mistaken. Earlier this year, the National Science Foundation (NSF) awarded nearly $500,000 to scientists from the Getty Conservation Institute, Stanford's National Accelerator Laboratory (SLAC) and the Aerospace Corporation to do just that."
Read more at discovery.com.
"Emmett L. Bennett Jr., a classicist who played a vital role in deciphering Linear B, the Bronze Age Aegean script that defied solution for more than 50 years after it was unearthed on clay tablets in 1900, died on Dec. 15 in Madison, Wis. He was 93. His daughter Cynthia Bennett confirmed the death. Professor Bennett was considered the father of Mycenaean epigraphy — that is, the intricate art of reading inscriptions from the Mycenaean period, as the slice of the Greek Bronze Age from about 1600 to 1200 B.C. is known. His work, which entailed analysis so minute that he could eventually distinguish the handwritings of many different Bronze Age scribes, helped open a window onto the Mycenaean world."
Read the entire obituary online at The New York Times.
APA Annual Meeting Session 35 (Saturday, January 7, 11:15 a.m.-1:15 p.m., Marriott Grand Ballroom I), is a discussion of the literary, historical, art historical, religious, and political possibilities raised by John Miller's Goodwin Prize-Winning book. Incoming President-Elect Denis Feeney will be the moderator. Panelists will briefly summarize their papers but will not read them in their entirety so as to leave more time for discussion. The papers are therefore posted here.
To complement her Presidential Panel, “Images for Classicists,” to be held at the 2012 Joint Meeting of the APA/AIA in Philadelphia, Kathleen Coleman has assembled an online resource to help scholars locate and use images in their teaching and research.