CFP: The Spatial Turn in Roman Studies

CfP: The spatial turn in Roman studies

Auckland, January 22-24 2020
Durham, June 10-12 2020

Organised by Amy Russell and Maxine Lewis

We write to announce two international conferences plus a year-long programme of events in Durham on the theme ‘The spatial turn in Roman studies’. This is the call for papers for the Auckland conference, 22-24 January 2020. A call for papers for the Durham conference will follow.

We plan a series of events reflecting on a generation’s worth of work on the spatial turn in Roman studies and seeking out the best new scholarship arising from it. The goal of our programme of events is a double one: first, to gain an overview of the directions research has taken, identify underlying themes and trends, and describe successful spatial methodology as a guideline for future work; second, to move beyond what has been done and explore the full potential of spatial approaches, especially by bringing together work that has taken the same body of spatial theory in different directions. The most pressing divide we see is between work on historical and archaeological space on the one hand, and imagined and literary space on the other: they represent two well-developed bodies of scholarship in Roman studies, both often drawing on the same set of 20th-century spatial theory, but not often in conversation with each other. We seek to address the questions: could more be done to bring them together and pool their insights, or does the problem lie in the way the underlying spatial theories fail to bring together real and imagined space?

The Auckland conference will include research papers, seminars with pre-circulated readings from major thinkers in spatial theory, and keynote addresses from Ray Laurence, Nandini Pandey, and Diana Spencer. This call is for those interested in delivering 20-minute research papers on any topic related to the spatial turn in Roman studies. Papers should present new research grounded in spatial methodologies; they could be historical, literary, archaeological, philosophical, or all four and more, and could cover any aspect of the Roman Mediterranean from the archaic period to late antiquity, but should reflect the impact of the spatial turn on their scholarly context.

Please send a 300-word abstract as an email attachment to BOTH amy.russell@dur.ac.uk AND maxine.lewis@auckland.ac.nz by 28 June 2019, with the subject header ‘The spatial turn in Roman studies (Auckland)’. We welcome proposals for innovative presentation formats, and are keen to hear from speakers of all career stages and from any discipline.

It is our ambition to pay for flights within Australasia and accommodation during the conference period for all speakers. Please note that the conference for the Australasian Society for Classical Studies (ASCS) will be held in Otago, New Zealand, the following week. If speakers are flying from outside Australasia to attend both our conference and ASCS, we aim to pay for your transport between Auckland and Otago.

Prospective speakers from the northern hemisphere should consider waiting to apply to the Durham conference, to reduce the total amount of air travel required. We hope to support virtual attendance for some sessions via Skype or similar, but those giving papers should plan to attend in person.

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(Photo: "Handwritten" by A. Birkan, licensed under CC BY 2.0)

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The APA is a member of the National Humanities Alliance, a consortium of learned societies and other institutions that advocates for the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) and other relevant agencies.  Thanks to the efforts of the Alliance, several members of Congress, Representatives David Price (D-NC) and Thomas Petri (R-WI) and Senator Tom Udall (D-NM) are circulating “Dear Colleague” letters in their respective chambers that support funding for the NEH.  “Dear Colleague” letters are a way for members of Congress to express their backing of legislation in advance of a vote on the relevant bill. 

You can assist in this work by urging your representative and your senators to sign these letters.  The Alliance has set up an electronic form that you can use to send your message.  Once you provide some basic contact information that will direct your message to the correct members of Congress, you will have access to a template that describes the importance of humanities funding and provides contact information for the Congressional staff members gathering signatures for these letters.  You should feel free to add to this template examples of how you have used federal funding to reach audiences both on your campus and off it or of effects you have observed of recent cuts in federal funding for the humanities. 

View full article. | Posted in SCS Announcements on Tue, 03/25/2014 - 4:16pm by Adam Blistein.

It seems to be, first of all, from what I understand from doctors, it’s really rare. If it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut the whole thing down.

So ended Missouri Republican Todd Akin’s chances of unseating Democratic Senator Claire McCaskill in the 2012 U.S. election.  Discussing pregnancy resulting from rape (timeline of the comments here), Akin was defending his belief that anti-abortion laws shouldn’t include exemptions for victims of rape.  Akin’s words are a now-classic example of a “Kinsley gaffe,” when a politician slips up and says what s/he actually thinks—classic enough that the term “Akinize” now describes the tactic whereby a Democrat compares a Republican opponent’s words to Akin’s “legitimate rape” comments.

Akin was expressing a factually baseless belief that’s not a new idea, and was part of such a trend of election-cycle “rape and pregnancy controversies” that Wikipedia has a page devoted to it.  He also was participating in a tradition dating back at least to the 1st/2nd-century CE Greek medical writer Soranus of Ephesus, whose treatise on gynecology is filled with quack-science gems akin to Akin’s.  Yet there’s a key difference of opinion between Akin and Soranus, as we’ll see, that makes Akin’s comments more sinister by contrast.

View full article. | Posted in on Fri, 03/14/2014 - 4:00pm by T. H. M. Gellar-Goad.

Most people nowadays read classical literature in translation, if they read it at all. This isn't at all a bad thing, or something that classicists need to waste time lamenting. Getting even an "intermediate level" knowledge of Latin or Greek is a hard slog, and life is not infinite: dum loquimur, fugerit invida aetas: "Time is a hater, and while we are talking, she's gone". Translation is the means by which most people will read Horace. If we wonder about one version (as we probably will about my deliberately-debatable stab at this line: did the Romans really have "haters"?), we can compare it with multiple others: "envious time"? "hostile time"? "jealous time"? Any of these choices makes a different suggestion about what kind of person time might be, how we should feel about her tendency to scarper, and what drives her animosity towards us.

In this context, it's not surprising that new translations of classical texts are rolling off the presses at an alarming rate. I write as one of the hordes currently working on a new translation of the Odyssey. It is notable that many of my fellow-translators are not tenured academics: translation has a fairly marginal position in the contemporary academy (and certainly won't get you tenure), but it is a practice that ought to be of interest to all of us, as scholars, as teachers and as defenders of our discipline. Translation is the most direct means by which we communicate these texts to a large number of people.

View full article. | Posted in on Thu, 03/13/2014 - 1:28pm by Emily Wilson.
Sicily, Crossroads of History, Dec. 27, 2014-Jan. 4 or 7, 2015, Director: Beverly Berg

Sicily is a true crossroads of history, with striking archaeological remains from antiquity and beautiful churches from Medieval and Baroque times. Our program takes a complete circle tour of this magical island. We begin with a visit to beautiful Taormina, then on to Syracuse, where Timoleon and Plato once walked. We contemplate the golden temples of Agrigento, Selinunte, and Segesta, some of the best preserved temples of Classical Greek times. The program ends in Palermo, and there is an optional post-classical continuation to see more of Palermo, once a Punic town, beautified by Norman French rulers in the 12th century and Aragonese rulers thereafter.

Price: 8 night version: $1,595 per person, single supplement of $200. 11 night version: $1,995, single supplement $275.  Price will include hotels, breakfasts, dinners except in Syracuse and the extra nights in Palermo, ground transportation, and entry fees.  Price will NOT include airfare, dinners in Syracuse and on post-classical extension in Palermo, and transfer from Palermo airport to hotel, or (for those on post-classical extension) from hotel to airport.

View full article. | Posted in Conferences, Lectures, and Meetings on Thu, 03/13/2014 - 11:22am by Adam Blistein.
The Program in Ancient Studies at Indiana University (http://www.indiana.edu/~ancient/home/) will host a conference on the topic of the miniature and the minor on April 11-12, 2014, on the Bloomington campus.  Whereas so much of our research implicitly or explicitly concerns the monumental and the major, we propose to investigate the miniature and the minor in antiquity from five distinct disciplinary perspectives: Classical Studies, History, History of Art, Near Eastern Languages and Civilization, and Religious Studies. We are interested not only in the realia of the miniature and the minor but in the construction of those categories by both ancients and moderns. We are interested in the miniature and minor both in their own rights and as counterpoints to the monumental and the major. We are less interested in simply demanding that attention be paid to the neglected and the overlooked. 
 
For further information, please contact Jonathan Ready (jready@indiana.edu) or visit the conference web site:  http://www.indiana.edu/~ancient/events/Con2014.shtml
View full article. | Posted in Conferences, Lectures, and Meetings on Thu, 03/13/2014 - 10:07am by Adam Blistein.

The Department of Classics at the University of Reading (UK) has recently launched a new interdisciplinary MA course in ‘Ancient Maritime Trade and Navigation’ in collaboration with Ca’ Foscari University in Italy. This unique MA focuses on the history of maritime trade, shipbuilding, and navigation techniques in the Ancient and Medieval Mediterranean, and the archaeology of port infrastructures, ships, and trade goods.

The duration of the program of study is 12 months; Reading courses draw on the research expertise of academic staff within the Departments of Classics, Economics, and Archaeology, as well as the Centre for Economic History.  The two-month long Venice course combines seminars, lectures and site visits and is taught in English by staff of the Dipartimento di Studi Umanistici of Ca’ Foscari. Students will also have the option to take part in one of the underwater excavation projects run by Ca’ Foscari over the summer. Applications for the academic year 2014/15 close on June 1, 2014.

View full article. | Posted in Degree and Certificate Programs on Wed, 03/12/2014 - 4:08pm by Adam Blistein.

Heckman Stipends, made possible by the A.A. Heckman Endowed Fund at St. John's College in Collegeville, MN, are awarded semi-annually. Up to 10 stipends in amounts up to $2,000 are available each year. Funds may be applied toward travel to and from Collegeville, housing and meals at Saint John’s University, and costs related to duplication of HMML’s microfilm or digital resources. The Stipend may be supplemented by other sources of funding but may not be held simultaneously with another HMML Stipend or Fellowship. Holders of the Stipend must wait at least two years before applying again.  The program is specifically intended to help scholars who have not yet established themselves professionally and whose research cannot progress satisfactorily without consulting materials to be found in the collections of the Hill Museum &Manuscript Library.

Applications must be submitted by April 15 for residencies between July and December of the same year, or by November 15 for residencies between January and June of the following year.  Applicants are asked to provide:

View full article. | Posted in Awards and Fellowships on Wed, 03/12/2014 - 10:45am by Adam Blistein.

The Alfried Krupp von Bohlen und Halbach-Stiftung announces two to four scholarships for non-German postgraduates or non-German scholars with a PhD to conduct research at the Historisches Institut, Abt. Alte Geschichte, University of Cologne.  Scholarships are for periods ranging between 6 and 24 months. Recipients of the scholarships will receive amounts that correspond with those granted by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (currently about 1.200 € per month for a postgraduate, 1.800 € per month for a scholar with a PhD.).  The scholarships are intended for projects from all disciplines of classical studies pertaining to the general topic of "centre and periphery", but projects in Greek or Latin epigraphy of the high empire and late antiquity are especially encouraged.

View full article. | Posted in Awards and Fellowships on Wed, 03/05/2014 - 3:23pm by Adam Blistein.

As part of Aquila Theatre’s National Endowment for the Humanities multiyear Award for You|Stories, Aquila will explore Sophocles’ ancient play Philoctetes and reimagine it with the title role played as a female combat soldier. Aquila Theatre is a veteran of Greek Classical Theatre and will boldly take on this newest endeavor. Join us as we present, A Female Philoctetes, a staged reading, translated by Peter Meineck and directed and adapted by Desiree Sanchez. Post show talk backs to follow each performance. This event is part of You|Stories – Aquila’s innovative public program funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities, which uses ancient drama to inspire modern stories. An interactive You|Stories app and web platform will allow the veteran community and the public to explore these ancient stories and be inspired to tell their own. These new narratives will be archived at the Library of Congress. 

Performances will take place at BAM Fisher, 321 Ashland Place, Brooklyn, NY 11217 at 7:00 p.m. from April 16-19.  Call 718.636.4100 for tickets or visit http://www.bam.org/theater/2014/a-female-philoctetes

View full article. | Posted in SCS Announcements on Tue, 03/04/2014 - 3:44pm by Adam Blistein.

The Classical Association of the Atlantic States (CAAS) seeks a Webmaster to work jointly with our current Webmaster beginning on or about June 1, 2014, and to assume full responsibility beginning October 11, 2014. The position has a three-year, renewable term, subject to annual review by the CAAS Board of Directors. The annual stipend will be $4,000, subject to approval by the Board.

The Webmaster will manage the online process of submitting and evaluating abstracts to support the Program Committee; maintain the platforms supporting the organization’s work (e.g. WordPress, Google Apps, Insightly) and identify new platforms as needed; facilitate document-sharing for Board meetings; manage email aliases for Board members, and so forth.

In consultation with CAAS senior officers, the Webmaster will have editorial oversight of articles posted on the website and will have responsibility for publishing announcements to the CAAS community online and via email. The Webmaster also will guide CAAS in implementing and overseeing social media in support of our mission.

Applicants should send a cover letter and a curriculum vitae by April 1, 2014, to the chair of the search committee: Professor Janet M. Martin, CAAS President, by email at <jmmartin@princeton.edu>.

View full article. | Posted in General Announcements on Tue, 03/04/2014 - 10:44am by Adam Blistein.

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