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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Over the summer I saw a production of Antigone at the Schaubühne in Berlin, and for the most part I absolutely hated it. In a way this was rather good – I’ve seen so many blah-blah-just-fine productions of Greek tragedy that it’s easy to forget the invigorating ire that trickles down your spine when you see the immortal lines to which you’ve devoted your career trampled into the dust before your eyes. It was a classic example of artistic navel-gazing at its most extreme: the whole play was set in a therapy group, where the actors took it in turns to adopt the roles of different participants in the myth to work through their own issues, and then came out of character to discuss what they’d learned from the process. Everything was blasted with self-referential irony until every last trace of emotion withered and died. Tiresias was played by a glove-puppet who threw fried chicken all over the stage while uttering his prophecies in a squeaky voice. The duel between Polynices and Eteocles was staged as a wet towel fight. There was far too much silver glitter involved at every point.

View full article. | Posted in on Wed, 11/06/2013 - 8:30am by Laura Swift.

“At last my love has come along.” — At Last, written by Mack Gordon and Harry Warren
tandem uenit amor (at last my love has come along) — Sulpicia poem 1, line 1

Etta James’ most famous song quotes the first line of the love-elegist Sulpicia, one of the few surviving Graeco-Roman women poets.  One of the song’s composers, Harry Warren (born Salvatore Antonio Guaragna), was the son of Italian immigrants.  Perhaps he encountered the line through them, and it stuck with him over the years?  More likely a coincidence.  In “Rumour Has It,” a recent chart-topper by the pop star Adele—a self-described admirer of Etta James and lover of poetry—the plot is one of love unrequited and rumor at large, a scenario reminiscent of Dido, Aeneas, and Rumor in Vergil Aeneid book 4.  (I’m not the first to make this association: see @calpunzel on Twitter.)  Even closer correspondences with Vergil appear in the songs of the singer Dido, particularly “My Lover’s Gone,” as Alden Smith has pointed out.

View full article. | Posted in on Tue, 11/05/2013 - 2:24pm by T. H. M. Gellar-Goad.

For several weeks in August and September, the United States government considered whether or not to bomb Syria. Public support for bombing hovered around ten percent, but the nation’s leaders seemed open to proceeding with military action. Various reasons were offered – to prevent further deaths from gas attacks by Syrian government forces; to degrade the Assad regime’s capacity to launch such attacks; to enforce international laws banning chemical weapons; to honor President Obama’s “red line” ultimatum of some months earlier; and to show rogue regimes and the world that the United States meant business when it made threats. An addendum to the last argument was that inaction would embolden the likes of Iran or North Korea. This line of thought got me thinking of a course I teach at Penn State, and the “logic of empire.”

View full article. | Posted in on Tue, 11/05/2013 - 10:56am by Garrett Fagan.

Here in Europe, one of the expectations that come with a university position is that one will apply for big-money research grants. This is both a blessing and a curse. It’s a blessing because there genuinely is extra money on offer: if you want to run a complex collaborative project with postdoctoral researchers and extra PhD students, you can. It’s a curse because universities, which are (traditionally) almost all publicly funded and minimally endowed, are increasingly reliant on that extra income to keep afloat. As a result, there is pressure on the professors to bring in research money, sometimes against their own better judgment. At best, it’s a virtuous circle: the academic wants to do the research, and the grant enables it. At worst, the tail of the research grant wags the academic dog: the professor designs the application just to satisfy the university’s demand for income-generation, and ends up either rejected or (worse) running a project ineptly and unhappily.

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View full article. | Posted in on Mon, 11/04/2013 - 9:09pm by Tim Whitmarsh.

We are launching a new feature on our website, "Guest Blogs," and we invite you to check it out and see what you think. Our field is amazingly varied, and there are new developments on the move in all parts of that variety, so that it seemed a good idea to have a forum where members can be kept up to date, informed, and--ideally-entertained in the process. We have invited a dozen Classicists to contribute regular columns (to keep an archaic print term that seems to have survived into the new medium).  We have tried to cover as much of the range of our subject as we can, and a geographical span as well, to capture at least some of the range of perspectives and expertises under the umbrella of our organization.

View full article. | Posted in SCS Announcements on Mon, 11/04/2013 - 3:10pm by Adam Blistein.

We are posting a call for signatures to a petition launched by our colleagues in France, and circulated by John Bulwer of Euroclassica.  We thought this was an important petition to draw to your attention, and we urge members to read the message and to consider signing the petition.

Denis Feeney

View full article. | Posted in SCS Announcements on Sun, 11/03/2013 - 1:47pm by Adam Blistein.

If you are a teacher at the pre-collegiate level and have student loans, please read carefully through everything at the following link. You may be eligible for forgiveness and/or cancellation.

http://studentaid.ed.gov/repay-loans/forgiveness-cancellation/charts/teacher

Ronnie Ancona

APA VP for Education

View full article. | Posted in SCS Announcements on Wed, 10/30/2013 - 10:03pm by Ronnie Ancona.

From the iTunes App Store:

Use one app to look up any Greek or Latin word: Logeion was developed at the University of Chicago to provide simultaneous lookup of entries in the many reference works that make up the Perseus Classical collection. Most reference works represented in this app are based on digitized texts from the Perseus Digital Library at Tufts University.

  • Liddell and Scott's Greek-English Lexicon (1940)
  • Liddell and Scott's Intermediate Greek Lexicon (1889)
  • Autenrieth's Homeric Dictionary
  • Slater's Lexicon to Pindar (1969)
  • Lewis's Elementary Latin Dictionary (1890)
  • Harper's Dictionary of Classical Antiquities
  • Princeton Encyclopedia of Classical Sites
  • Smith's Dictionary of Greek and Roman Geography
  • Smith's Dictionary of Greek and Roman Antiquities
  • Perseus Encyclopedia

The app draws data from the following Greek and Latin textbooks.

View full article. | Posted in Websites and Resources on Sat, 10/26/2013 - 10:08am by .

In recognition of Open Access Week, the "Profhacker" blog at The Chronicle for Higher Education has posted an instructional video about open access. Although it deals exclusively with open access as it applies to research in the sciences, it is relevant for scholars in the humanities, too.

View full article. | Posted in General Announcements on Thu, 10/24/2013 - 9:39am by .

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Open-access page for A Commentary on the Satires of Juvenal:

http://escholarship.org/uc/item/4jh846pn

Site for purchase of POD paperback or ePub version of California Classical Studies books:

http://escholarship-california_classical_studies.lulu.com/spotlight/

Information for potential contributors to the series:

http://calclassicalstudies.org/?page_id=42

View full article. | Posted in General Announcements on Mon, 10/21/2013 - 9:48pm by .

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