Classics at Howard University

Howard University is the only HBCU in the United States with a Classics Department, which has been a part of the institution since its inception in 1867. SCS has recently received the following news from the Department:

"Howard University has decided to close the Department of Classics as part of its prioritization efforts and is currently negotiating with the faculty of Classics and with other units in the College as to how they might best reposition and repurpose our programs and personnel. These discussions have been cordial, and the faculty remains hopeful that the department can be kept intact at some level, with its faculty and programs still in place." 

The Board of Directors of the Society for Classical Studies strongly supports all the faculty, including all non-tenure track faculty, and students in the Department of Classics. The SCS Classics Advisory Service will continue to make itself available to all at Howard in order to advise and support the department, its programs, students, and all faculty.

The SCS Board of Directors, 4/16/21


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The SCS Committee on Ancient and Modern Performance (CAMP) seeks participants for its performance at the SCS/AIA Annual Meeting in San Francisco (January 6-9, 2016).

This year's play is ARISTOPHANES' NERDS: A Birds reformatted from Greek to Geek, adapted by Stanford Classics in Theater (SCIT) and directed by Lizzy Ten-Hove. After a condensed rehearsal schedule, the performance will be held on the meeting's opening night, Wednesday, January 6. 

Meet Pete and Dick, two Wall Street suits fed up with finance after the 2008 economic crisis. They fly across the country to meet Tim Tereus, a former senator now living the good life in Silicon Valley, surrounded by nerds of every stripe. They hatch a disruptive idea: If the nerds seize control of the nation's data, the government will be forced to capitulate, and the nerds will have their revenge! 

All interested parties are invited to send a brief theatrical resumé and/or any relevant experience and qualifications to Al Duncan at at their earliest convenience. For more information about Stanford Classics in Theater, including a recording 2015 Nerds debut, see Casting will be announced in early Fall.

View full article. | Posted in SCS Announcements on Wed, 08/19/2015 - 9:27am by Adam Blistein.

I am pleased to post the press release below from the University of Oklahoma concerning a grant that the University has just received from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to implement the Digital Latin Library.  This project developed from a feasibility study, directed by our Information Architect Samuel Huskey, that was supported by a grant from the Foundation to the SCS.

Adam D. Blistein, Executive Director


The University of Oklahoma is the recipient of a $1 million grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation for the continued development of the Digital Latin Library project, which—when complete—will create resources that people of varying levels of interest and expertise in Latin can use to find, read, discuss, study, teach, edit and annotate Latin texts of all types and eras.  This grant will allow OU and its collaborators to move forward on the implementation and launch of this Linked Open Data resource for providing resources and support of new scholarly educational materials related to Latin texts. 

“This grant is a great tribute to the leadership of our University and its faculty and staff in the fields of classics and letters,” said OU President David L. Boren.

View full article. | Posted in SCS Announcements on Tue, 08/18/2015 - 4:03pm by Adam Blistein.

Vice Verba is a free game for digital devices that helps students of Latin master verb forms. Players parse verbs and produce forms to earn togas. When enough togas are collected, an imago of a famous dead Roman is unlocked. Collect all XII imagines, and don’t forget to flip the imagines over to see their stats! Players can customize the game by choosing tenses, voices, and moods, and the presence or absence of macrons. The game increases in difficulty as the player’s skills improve.

iPhone and iPad:


Pauline Ripat, University of Winnipeg, and Christina Vester, University of Waterloo

View full article. | Posted in Classics in the News on Tue, 08/18/2015 - 3:54pm by Adam Blistein.

Until we are able to open the Placement Service for registrations for the 2015-2016 academic year, we are posting notices of openings submitted to us by institutions.  You can now read these listings at the web site for last year's Service.  Until we are able to open the Service for the current year, which we hope to do next week, we will update this page as frequently as necessary.  Institutions wishing to add a listing to this page should send it to There is no charge to submit a listing to this interim page, and no registration is needed to view the page.

View full article. | Posted in SCS Announcements on Tue, 08/18/2015 - 3:34pm by Adam Blistein.

We apologize for the delay in launching the Placement Service online site for 2015-2016.  We now expect it to be available during the week of August 24.  In the interim, we want to make sure that SCS members are informed about positions in the field that are currently being advertised.  We urge institutions seeking applications for positions in classics or archaeology to send those announcements to  Starting on August 18, we will post those announcements at no charge until the new site is launched.

We thank SCS members for their patience.

Adam D. Blistein

Executive Director

View full article. | Posted in SCS Announcements on Fri, 08/14/2015 - 12:08am by Adam Blistein.

See the preliminary program for the upcoming meeting in San Francisco here.  Note that we expect to add a few sessions to this list in the next few weeks.

View full article. | Posted in SCS Announcements on Sun, 08/09/2015 - 1:25pm by Adam Blistein.

Abstracts are invited for the international conference "Teaching Through Images: Imagery in Ancient Didactic Poetry" to be held in Heidelberg (Internationales Wissenschaftsforum Heidelberg) on July 1-3, 2016.  In ancient didactic poetry, poets frequently make use of imagery – similes, metaphors, acoustic images, models, exempla, fables, allegory, personifications, and  other  tropes  –  as  a  means  to  elucidate  and convey their didactic message. In the  proposed  conference  we  will  investigate  such  phenomena  and explore their functions to make the unseen visible, the  unheard  audible,  and  the  unknown comprehensible, but also to muddy the waters. Possible topics for discussion include: At what point and in what context is such imagery deployed?   How does it function in relation to the audience's experience and expectations? For instance, Hesiod's fable, Empedocles' clepsydra, Lucretius' troop formations, and Vergil's political bees, all draw on a variety of sources and have complex relations to the teachings in which they are embedded and aim at engaging their readers and addressees in different ways. Imagery introduced by one didactic poet, such as Hesiod’s metallic races, may  form  an  intertextual  tradition exploited by subsequent poets for diverse purposes. But such tropes can also sometimes render the poet’s message riddling or cryptic, e.g.

View full article. | Posted in Calls for Papers on Sat, 08/08/2015 - 12:38pm by Adam Blistein.
Medieval Imagery

by Ellen Bauerle

This spring I was fortunate to hear an interesting panel discussion—stand-up-and-take-notice interesting—at the Medieval Academy of America’s annual meeting, hosted by Notre Dame University. The panelists’ observations seemed to me relevant to the SCS both as demonstrating additional kinds of outreach but more importantly as discussing the peculiar period higher education now finds itself in, and what might be done about that at every level, from junior scholar to dean.

View full article. | Posted in on Sat, 08/08/2015 - 12:01pm by Ellen Bauerle.

by David Potter

On May 2, 2015, two men boxed for thirty-six minutes, and each made an enormous amount of money, splitting a record purse of $300 million. Fans may not have seen the greatest fight of all time, or anything close to it, but they did get to boo the winner, Floyd Mayweather, when he strutted around the ring after he was awarded the unanimous decision. The political ambitions of the loser, Manny Pacquiao, do not seem to have been damaged by his defeat. There are already rumors of a rematch. Tiberius Caesar would have been appalled.

On May 27, 2015, a series of indictments was issued against leaders of the Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) for a wide range of corrupt activities in connection with the world’s most widely viewed sporting event, the World Cup. The modern notion that major sports organizations should claim to be self-policing and effectively free of governmental oversight—a privilege also asserted by, for instance, professional sports leagues in the United States and the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA)—descends from the early days of these institutions in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Claudius Caesar would have been astounded.

View full article. | Posted in on Sat, 08/08/2015 - 11:58am by Ellen Bauerle.

Elsewhere in this issue, in his article titled The Metal Age, Kris Fletcher discusses the relationship between classical studies and heavy metal music. Examining various metal appropriations of themes, characters, and ideas from classical antiquity, some less orthodox than others, Fletcher notes, “… these songs should remind us that we as classicists do not control this material.” On the SCS website, Mary-Kay Gamel and the Outreach Committee have voiced a similar view concerning the shared understanding of classical material: “We use the word ‘outreach’ not to suggest a one-way communication in which scholars inform others, but a complex interaction in which all involved contribute to a discussion of what Classics is and what it might be.”

Not surprisingly, then, in January the Outreach Committee enjoyed a lively discussion of the role of professional classicists and their students as editors of Wikipedia articles on classical subjects.

View full article. | Posted in on Sat, 08/08/2015 - 11:54am by Ellen Bauerle.


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