Call for Student Nominations: Emory Summer Seminar in Material Culture

The Use of Art and Material Culture in Scholarship and Teaching:
Greek and Roman Art: an Introduction
A Seminar in Material Culture for Graduate Students in Classics and Ancient History
Directed by Dr Jasper Gaunt, Curator of Greek and Roman Art, Michael C. Carlos Museum,
Emory University
22 May – 30 June 2017
Emory University, Atlanta GA
Supported by generous grants from the Samuel H. Kress and Henry Luce Foundations, and Emory University
 
The Society for Classical Studies (SCS) invites doctoral programs in Classics or Ancient History to nominate a student to participate in a 6-week seminar that will introduce ten graduate students to the use of material culture in their scholarship and teaching. The aim of this seminar is to familiarize students with archaeological material that goes hand in hand with the historical and literary records, and how to incorporate such evidence into historical or philological research. This seminar will be the second of three with the same purpose but with different foci and at different institutions. The first took place at the J. Paul Getty Museum in 2016; the third will be held in 2018. Background. Despite new awareness of the scope of material evidence, and the ready availability of excellent images, all too often literary scholars treat images as decoration or illustration, while historians exploit the material record only gingerly. Probably more important than “literature” was the oral tradition, and the essential web of images that arose from it. Conversely, it has been wisely said of archaeology that it is a branch of ancient history.
 
This seminar offers students an opportunity to engage with the material record on a daily basis. Over the six weeks, every effort will be made to introduce the widest range of possibilities encountered in the archaeological record. Not only pottery and sculpture in bronze and marble will be considered, but also works in precious or exotic materials like ivory, gold, silver, amber, gems, glass, faience, and colored stones. Questions of facture and circulation will predominate: how these objects were made, by whom, for whom, why, and how to recognize them in the literary, historical and epigraphic record.
 
Resources and Faculty.
Participants will have access to the Museum’s collections of Egyptian, Nubian, Near Eastern, Greek, Etruscan and Roman antiquities, both those on view in the galleries and those in storage. The latter, which will be used daily for teaching, include notably rich holdings of fine pottery and gems. The Karen Mariea Madsen Parsons Conservation Laboratory, the Thalia N. Carlos Education Center and its staff are also participants, as are Emory faculty members. An extensive collection of plaster casts of ancient sculpture, and models of the sanctuaries at Delphi, Olympia and the Athenian Acropolis on long-term loan from the Metropolitan Museum of Art are sprinkled among several buildings on campus. Further resources include the two principal campus libraries, the Robert W. Woodruff together with the Stuart A. Rose Manuscripts and Rare Books Library; and The Pitts Theology Library. Besides resources at Emory, the course will include the participation of Prof. Patricia Butz, Savannah College of Art and Design, on treasuries and their inscriptions; Prof. Mark Abbe, University of Georgia at Athens, on polychromy and color on ancient sculpture; and Prof. Peter Bing, University of Toronto, on the new Posidippos papyrus and hellenistic gems.
 
The course is co-ordinated by Jasper Gaunt, Curator of Greek and Roman Art at the Michael C. Carlos Museum. He is the joint editor with A.J. Clark of Essays in Honor of Dietrich von Bothmer (Amsterdam 2002), and has published widely on Greek vase-painting (including a volume of the Corpus Vasorum Antiquorum: Great Britain 21: Harrow School, 2005), vessels in bronze and marble, metrical inscriptions on pottery, and reception studies.
 
Schedule.
The seminar is structured in broadly chronological terms. The importance of time allocated for students to absorb material in the galleries in their own ways cannot be overstated. Three two-hour classes are planned each week around an over-arching theme, outlined in the synopsis. Provision is also made each afternoon for further opportunities to handle original objects. Excursions to local artists’ workshops – such as glass-blowing, gold working and a bronze foundry – are planned on Friday afternoons, as is a day trip to see the Nashville Parthenon and its life-size reproduction of the chryselephantine cult statue.
 
Expectations of Students.
It is proposed that students will undertake small assignments on an on-going basis, intended primarily to foster familiarity with the world of objects. These will include informal mini-presentations on objects in the Carlos Museum’s collections, gallery talks, and some sketching. Over the course of the seminar, participants will work on a paper to be presented in the last week. The subject will be of the student’s choice, rising out of their research interests, but in conjunction with the course co-ordinator, who will allocate generous weekly time to meet with students individually.
 
Logistics and Funding.
Students selected for the seminar will be offered free accommodation at the Clairmont Campus of Emory University. A shuttle service operates between this campus and the main one where the seminar will be held. Both on campus and within walking distance of campus can be found a variety of shops, grocery stores and places to eat. Some public transportation, and taxi services like Uber, work well. In other words, the use of a car is not essential. The cost of car rental is greatly reduced if the airport is avoided. In addition, thanks to the generosity of the Samuel H. Kress and Henry Luce Foundations, the SCS will provide a stipend of up to $2,000 to cover the cost of travel to and from Atlanta, and modest out of pocket expenses. The SCS believes that these arrangements will offset many but by no means all of the costs of attendance at the seminar.
 
Nomination Process.
Each doctoral program may nominate only one student for the seminar. The focus of the student’s academic work should be classical languages, literatures, and/or history and not archaeology or other areas of material culture. Preference will be given to graduate students who are still taking coursework or in the early stages of writing their dissertation. Nominators should elicit from potential applicants a CV and a statement of the value that the student expects to derive from attending the seminar, choose one applicant to nominate, and forward the CV and statement to the SCS Executive Director (xd@classicalstudies.org), along with a brief endorsement. The student’s statement should be 500 to 700 words in length and should describe how the seminar would advance the applicant’s education and scholarly interests. The student him or herself should also email the Executive Director (xd@classicalstudies.org) with full name, mailing address, phone number.
A committee consisting of Dr Gaunt as chair and Professors Mary English (SCS Vice President for Education) and Donald Mastronarde (SCS VP for Publications and Research) will select participants from ten different academic institutions and a variety of countries of origin. Although many applicants from North America are expected, students from all countries are equally welcome. Reasonable fluency in English is the only requirement. Nominations by departments and emails from student nominees including their full contact information should be submitted electronically to xd@classicalstudies.org no later than 1 January 2017. The SCS will announce the decisions of the selection committee in early February 2017. Questions about the seminar program may be directed to Dr Gaunt at jgaunt@emory.edu or by telephone at 404 727 1146.
 
Synopsis of Curriculum
 
Each week has an over-arching (chronological) theme that is explored in a two-hour class on Monday, Wednesday and Friday 9.30–11.30. On Mondays through Thursdays, an afternoon session 2.30–4:00 is offered during which original works of art that are relevant to the topics discussed during the week are handled, and questions of manufacture discussed. On Friday afternoons, excursions are planned to studios of artists working in different media.
 
Week One: Monday May 22 – Friday May 26: Homer between Bronze Age and Geometric Greece
The Heroon at Lefkandi - Nestor’s Cup from Pithekoussai – Early artistic responses to the Epic Cycle
 
Week Two: Monday May 29 – Friday June 2: Archaic Greece: The symposium: how to throw a party in archaic Greece
Myths on vases, myths in “literature” - History and heroes - Herodotus and the Vix krater
 
Week Three: Monday June 5 – Friday June 9: Classical Greece
Inscriptions and the Parthenon Inventories – Polychromy on Greek sculpture - Textiles
Guest speakers: Dr Patricia Butz, Savannah College of Art and Design (inscriptions); Dr Mark Abbe, University of Georgia at Athens (polychromy)
 
Week Four: Monday June 12 – Friday June 16: Alexander the Great and the Hellenistic World
Macedonian Tombs - The Posidippos Papyrus and gems – Ptolemaic Egypt
Guest speaker: Dr Peter Bing, University of Toronto (Posidippos)
 
Week Five: Monday June 19 – Friday June 23: The Roman World
Trimalchio’s dinner party - Portraiture - Glass
 
Week Six: Monday June 26 – Friday June 30: Pulling Things Together
Student reports
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(Photo: Michael C. Carlos Museum. Carlos Collection of Ancient Art, Atlanta, used with permission)

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(Provided by David A. Reingold)

On Sun., March 25th, 2018, the College of Liberal Arts lost our dear colleague Professor Antonia Syson. Her friends and colleagues in the School of Languages and Cultures will remember Antonia for her passionate and intense dedication to all aspects of her work and for her exceptionally large laugh and cheerful whistling that brightened the hallways of Stanley Coulter.

Antonia received her BA with Honors from the University of Oxford in 1995, her MA in Latin from UC-Berkeley in 1997, and her PhD in Classics from UC-Berkeley in 2003. She joined the Classics faculty at Purdue in the School of Languages and Cultures in 2008. She authored the book Fama and Fiction in Vergil’s Aeneid, published in 2013 by Ohio State University Press. It was released in paperback last year. She was promoted with tenure in 2014. Antonia was a longtime chair of SLC’s community engagement project World Film Forum, and in 2014, Antonia was the lead coordinator on a grant from the Indiana Humanities Initiative that brought together K-12 and post-secondary teachers from across the state for the conference “Teaching the Past: Dissenting Histories in the Classroom.”

View full article. | Posted in In Memoriam on Mon, 04/02/2018 - 2:57pm by Erik Shell.
Adrienne Mayor with Nikos Solounias, still image from "Ancient Monster Hunters" (A&E Home Video, 2004)
In March, SCS editor-in-chief Sarah Bond interviewed ancient historian Adrienne Mayor, author of some of the bestselling books in the field of Classics, among them: The Amazons: Lives and Legends of Warrior Women across the Ancient World and The Poison King: The Life and Legend of Mithradates, Rome's Deadliest Enemy. We discussed Classics, pop-culture, writing for broader audiences, what it is like to consult with film and TV studios to help them recreate the ancient world accurately, and why the Amazons remain an inspiration even today.
 

Q. How did you first get interested in Classics and the ancient world?

My Book House (edited by Olive Beaupré Miller, 1920, with vivid illustrations) first introduced me to classical myths and world folklore. As a child I read those stories countless times. I reconnected with the ancient world at the University of Minnesota, where I combined classical studies, folklore, and history of science. Back then, I was mostly seeking stories to illustrate in my artwork.

View full article. | Posted in on Sat, 03/31/2018 - 10:24am by Adrienne Mayor.

Dear Members,

The deadline for submitting all proposals and reports except individual abstracts is 11:59 pm, Eastern Time, on April 9, 2018. This deadline applies to panels, workshops, roundtables, seminars, organizer-refereed panels, affiliated group panels, committee panels, and affiliated group charters.

The deadline for individual abstracts, including lightning talks, is 11:59 pm, Eastern Time, on April 25, 2018.

All submissions should be made through the SCS Program Submission system.

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View full article. | Posted in SCS Announcements on Fri, 03/30/2018 - 1:23pm by Erik Shell.

In the 6th century CE, a Scythian monk named Dionysius Exiguus was sent to Rome. Dionysius may have taken the monastic nickname of "the small" (exiguus), but his humility sheathed both his incredible abilities as a translator of Greek and Latin and his mathematical skills. He wrote and translated numerous saints lives, transcribed debates on heresies, and was known for his work with canon law. However, what Dionysius would be remembered for was his modifications to the dating system used within the Church and his attempts to use tables, called a computus, in order to track the date of Easter.  

View full article. | Posted in on Fri, 03/30/2018 - 4:59am by Sarah Bond.

ANCIENT MEDITERRANEAN REVOLUTIONS

A Conference to Commemorate the 50th Anniversary of AHMA at UC Berkeley

September 6 to September 8, 2018

The Graduate Group in Ancient History and Mediterranean Archaeology (AHMA) was a revolutionary initiative. It brought together a number of previously segregated fields, disciplines, and methods in an attempt to produce a broader, deeper, and more richly textured vision of Mediterranean antiquity. The program was designed to bridge two persistent gaps in particular: between the disciplines of History (text) and Archaeology (material culture), on the one hand, and between the civilizations of Greece and Rome and those of the Near East and Egypt, on the other. As the first interdisciplinary program of its kind in the world—long before “interdisciplinarity” had become an academic buzzword—AHMA helped to set an ambitious agenda that has transformed the study of the ancient Mediterranean world.

View full article. | Posted in Conferences, Lectures, and Meetings on Thu, 03/29/2018 - 1:58pm by Erik Shell.
Orality and Literacy in the Ancient World XIII

Call for Papers

The Department of Classics at the University of Texas at Austin invites all classicists, historians, religious studies and biblical scholars, and scholars with an interest in oral cultures to participate in the Thirteenth Conference on Orality and Literacy in the Ancient World, to take place in Austin (TX) from Wednesday 27 March 2019 to Sunday 31 March 2019.

The conference will follow the same format as the previous conferences, held in Hobart (1994), Durban (1996), Wellington (1998), Columbia, Missouri (2000), Melbourne (2002), Winnipeg (2004), Auckland (2006), Nijmegen (2008), Canberra (2010), Ann Arbor (2012), Atlanta (2014), and Lausanne (2016). It is planned that the refereed proceedings once again be published by E.J. Brill as Volume 13 in the “Orality and Literacy in the Ancient World” series.

Location:       The University of Texas at Austin

Dates:             Wednesday 27 March (registration that evening) to Sunday 31 March 2019

Theme:          Repetition

Keynote:        Professor Ruth Scodel (Classics, University of Michigan)

View full article. | Posted in Calls for Papers on Thu, 03/29/2018 - 1:54pm by Erik Shell.

(Provided by Ann Vasaly [FAAR 1983, RAAR 2010])

Eleanor Winsor Leach (1937-2018)

On February 19th it was learned that Eleanor Winsor Leach, Ruth N. Halls Professor of Classics at Indiana University, had passed away at the age of 80.  At the suggestion of Brian Rose, I wanted to take the opportunity to write to the Advisory Council of the important role she played in her chosen profession and her devotion throughout her career to the American Academy.

View full article. | Posted in In Memoriam on Thu, 03/29/2018 - 12:45pm by Erik Shell.
NEH Logo

After the threat of agency closure by the end of next fiscal year, congress has instead approved a $3 million dollar increase in funding for the National Endowment for the Humanities.

"The spending bill notes that the increases will help the NEH enhances its support for the preservation of Native languages and cultures and local history preservation initiatives, as well as fund a new program to build infrastructure and capacity for humanities organizations."

You can read the full analysis on the NEH website here.

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(Photo: "Logo of the United States National Endowment for the Humanities" by National Endowment for the Humanities, public domain, edited to fit thumbnail template)

View full article. | Posted in Classics in the News on Tue, 03/27/2018 - 3:00pm by Erik Shell.

Call for Papers 

St Andrews Graduate Conference in Ancient Philosophy 2018, on:

Teleology, Intelligence and Life in the Platonic and Aristotelian Tradition

Teleology plays a central role in both Plato’s and Aristotle’s philosophy. It is essential in particular for their cosmological views and their conceptions of intelligence (nous) and life. We are interested in a deeper understanding of both Plato’s and Aristotle’s approach to teleology in all their aspects and the principal differences between them.

We invite graduate students and recent graduates, who have received their PhD degree after the 1st of March 2017, to submit high-quality papers on any topic related to teleology within the Platonic or Aristotelian tradition, broadly construed, in antiquity.

Besides our keynote speaker, also members of staff of the St Andrews philosophy and classics departments, Prof. Sarah Broadie, Barbara Sattler and Alex Long, will attend the conference.

Keynote Speaker:

Mary Louise Gill (Brown)

 

Submission requirements:

View full article. | Posted in Calls for Papers on Tue, 03/27/2018 - 2:52pm by Erik Shell.

The Bergen Ancient Philosophy Symposium of 2018 will take place at the University of Bergen in Norway on May 24-25, 2018.

The topic will be Democracy and Its Rivals: Plato's Statesman and Laws

This symposium is free, but RSVP is required. You can read the full, two-day schedule here.

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(Photo: "Empty Boardroom" by Reynermedia, licensed under CC BY 2.0)

View full article. | Posted in Conferences, Lectures, and Meetings on Tue, 03/27/2018 - 2:45pm by Erik Shell.

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