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What is it like to teach a course in ancient slavery within a region where the reminders of antebellum American slavery still loom so large? Understanding servitude through the lens of slave systems in the ancient Mediterranean can challenge students to think about Greece and Rome in a less romantic light—and to recognize how they influenced American history too.
My course in ancient slavery came about three years ago, while I was a Visiting Assistant Professor of Classics at Kalamazoo College in Michigan. My colleagues asked me if I would be interested in teaching a special topics course on slavery in Greece and Rome. My previous experience in this topic was limited, but I was excited to take this opportunity to explore it.
Figure 1: Slave collar from the 4th-6thC CE now at the Baths of Diocletian (Image by Carole Raddato under a CC-BY-2.0).
CFP: Truth and Relativism in Ancient Philosophy
Wednesday 19th June — Friday 21st June 2019
Faculty of Philosophy, University of Groningen
This conference will bring together philosophers interested in examining truth and relativism in ancient Greek and Roman philosophy.
Confirmed speakers include: Paolo Crivelli (Geneva); Matthew Duncombe (Nottingham); Marion Durand (Toronto); Paul Gottlieb (Wisconsin); Orna Harari (Tel Aviv); John MacFarlane (Berkeley); Tamer Nawar (Groningen); and Noburu Notomi (Tokyo).
At last year’s SCS annual meeting in Boston, the Program Committee sponsored a panel called “Rhetoric: Then and Now.” Among the speakers constituting that panel was Princeton University Professor Dan-el Padilla Peralta, who, in lamenting the “inadequacy” and “meagerness” of a number of recent efforts in the field to diversify and expand access, delivered the following provocation: “perhaps it is time for this contemporary configuration of Classics to die so that it might be born into a new life.”
In response to Padilla Peralta’s provocation, I cheekily stood up and asked him where Classics ought to die and where it ought to live. (Full disclosure: Padilla Peralta and I are good friends from graduate school.) I asked this question because, living and working in flyover country—in the state of Nebraska—I can say that Classics here (and in the Midwestern states that surround me) is already dying. More often than not, where it lives is through symbiosis with another academic department.
The Society is delighted to announce this year's winners of the awards for Excellence in the Teaching of Classics at the Precollegiate Level. We congratulate Susan Meyer and Thomas J. (TJ) Howell, who will both receive their awards at the Plenary Session in San Diego. You can read their citations below:
Thomas J. Howell Citation
Call for Volunteers
The Society for Classical Studies seeks graduate or undergraduate student volunteers for the 150th Annual Meeting in San Diego, California, which will take place this coming January. Assignments will include working in the registration area and assisting staff with some sessions and special events.
In exchange for six hours of service (down two hours from last year), volunteers receive a waiver of their annual meeting registration fees. It is not necessary to be an SCS member to volunteer.
You can sign up to be a volunteer here. The deadline to sign up is November 21st.
(Written by Ted Tarkow)
An alum of Dickinson, Brown, and the University of Missouri (MU), Bob Seelinger (1951-2018) taught classics at Westminster College in Fulton, MO, from 1979 until taking early retirement in 2015, necessitated by a diagnosis of pancreatic cancer. By the time of his death, he had served as professor of classics for over 20 years and in addition had served as Dean of the Faculty and Vice President of the College for over a half dozen years at the campus made famous by the “Iron Curtain” speech delivered there in 1946 by Winston Churchill.
A beloved teacher, Bob taught all levels of both languages as well as a wide range of general education courses. Not surprisingly to the scores of Westminster students who had studied with him, he received the APA Award for Excellence in the Teaching of the Classics, the Governor’s Award for Teaching, and the Parents’ Association Award for Teaching, among many other recognitions. But his career also allowed presentations and publications in some of his favorite authors, from Apuleius (the focus of his PhD dissertation), to 4th century, Republican, and early Imperial authors and genres. His abundant time at the American School of Classical Studies in Athens, as well as at two NEH Summer Seminars, enabled other students and scholars to make the most of their time there.
Join us for the official start of our Sesquicentennial!
As one of the cornerstones upon which Classical scholarship has been built, much has already been said about Marcus Tullius Cicero. He has a sizable extant corpus that contains different genres, which in turn vary in style and topic. Furthermore, Cicero was a prominent political figure when the Roman Republic was falling and the Caesars were rising. Because of the nature of his corpus and the man himself, Cicero is an attractive topic of research not only for the traditional scholar but for a digital humanist as well. His large and varied corpus is promising for distant reading techniques, which allow us to examine and explore all of his works, thereby all of Cicero, easily and quickly. Through those digital techniques, we can gain a more complete view of who this ancient Roman man was.
The early registration deadline for the 2019 AIA-SCS Annual Meeting in San Diego is Friday November 9. Register on or before that date in order to benefit from the early rate. You can register here.
This post has recently been updated with a response from Brill.
The SCS Statement on Professional Ethics emphasizes the need for due diligence regarding the provenance of artifacts in many different areas of scholarly work, including initial publications of objects and texts and the management of institutional collections. In recognition of the importance of this issue, the SCS Board of Directors has voted to endorse an open letter on the publication of fragments that were acquired by the Museum of the Bible and published by Brill. You can read the text of the letter below, which was originally published by Dr. Roberta Mazza on November 5, 2018 and signed by many individuals. You can also read the response from Brill, originally published by Dr. Mazza on November 7.
Open letter to Brill: Fake and unprovenanced manuscripts
For the attention of Brill.
FAKE AND UNPROVENANCED MANUSCRIPTS
On 22 October 2018, the Museum of the Bible issued a press release informing the public that five of their recently acquired fragments that were claimed to come from the Dead Sea Scrolls are modern forgeries. These five forgeries are included in the first volume of the series ‘Publications of Museum of the Bible’ which was published by Brill in 2016.