Feminism & Classics 2022: body/language

FemClas 2022, the eighth quadrennial conference of its kind, has been rescheduled from its original dates (delayed by the pandemic) and will now take place on May 19–22, 2022, in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, at the invitation of the Wake Forest University Department of Classics and Department of Philosophy.  **Virtual presentation and attendance is supported, as well.**  The conference theme is “body/language,” broadly construed, and papers on all topics connected to feminism, Classics, Philosophy, and related fields are welcome.

This conference focuses on the use of the body and/or language to gain, lose, contest, or express power and agency in the ancient Mediterranean world.  Bodies and words, at both the physical and the conceptual levels, can exert disproportionate, oppositional, or complementary forces.  Both have the power to transform their surrounding environments significantly.  Yet there is a problematic dichotomy between body/physicality and language/reason, a problem long noted by philosophers, literary theorists, and social historians. FemClas 2022 seeks to contest, blur, and even eradicate these boundaries through papers, panels, and other programming that promotes interdisciplinary exploration of the ancient world.

Bodies, language, and their intersections have become even more prominent since the first announcement of this iteration of Feminism & Classics.  An epochal pandemic has swept the globe, with drastic and often unequal effects on different identity groups. Calls for racial justice in the United States and elsewhere have become increasingly more urgent.

We invite contributions that use the lens of bodies, languages, or their intersections to address any aspect of the ancient world, modern encounters with ancient cultures, or the academic practices of Classics, Philosophy, and related fields.  Especially welcome are interventions that respond to the current moments in which our societies and disciplines find themselves.  Participants might explore how voices engender movement(s) and transform bodies, or how movement(s) in turn can stimulate recognition of unheard or otherwise suppressed voices and lead to change. These can be voices and movements within the ancient world, within the university, or within our modern disciplines.  The study of agency, expressed through the problematic body/language dichotomy, addresses critical questions not only in scholarly work but also in the governance, makeup, and power dynamics of our fields, currently and historically. Now, perhaps more than ever, is a critical time for us to consider ourselves as students of bodies past and present, as embodied scholars, and to interrogate the repercussions of body normativity — from race and gender to neurodiversity, dis/ability, and body types — on our work and our profession.

SUBMISSION DETAILS

All submissions are due September 15, 2021.  FemClas 2022 welcomes individual papers, organized panels, workshops, roundtables, posters, author-meets-critic sessions, and other, innovative forms of programming.  We encourage submissions from the widest possible range of perspectives, addressing all areas of the ancient world and its legacies. We also welcome proposals especially from related interest groups (such as Mountaintop, Eos Africana, the Asian and Asian American Classical Caucus, MRECC, Trans in Classics, CripAntiquity, Lupercal Legit, Classics & Social Justice, the Lambda Classical Caucus, the Women’s Classical Caucus, Hesperides, and EuGeSta) and from allied disciplines (e.g., English, comparative literature, media studies, environmental humanities, animal studies and Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies).  

Proposals should aim for an abstract of approximately 300 words (not counting works cited), and should be anonymous where possible.  To submit a proposal for an individual paper or poster, visit:

https://forms.gle/ru3p2NcUEsdTcnVx8

To submit a proposal for any other type of session, visit:

https://forms.gle/FB6StiTDU6vuNCsj9

CODE OF CONDUCT

As part of submission, registration, and attendance at the conference, we will ask you to agree to our conference Code of Conduct & Anti-Harassment Policy, which prohibits harassment and discrimination of any kind.  A trained, experienced Anti-Harassment Administrator who is not a member of the discipline will receive and address or refer complaints about harassment and violations of the code of conduct. The Code of Conduct & Anti-Harassment Policy is available here:

https://femclas2020.wordpress.com/code-of-conduct/

ACCESSIBILITY

The in-person elements of FemClas 2022 will take place partially on the downtown campus of Wake Forest University and partially at a nearby hotel.  Each site is fully accessible for all forms of mobility.  At each site there will be all-gender bathrooms, a lactation room, a quiet room, and on-site childcare (which we intend to offer at no extra cost).

Some states prohibit using state funds to travel to North Carolina, despite the partial repeal of NC HB-2.  Wake Forest University, as a private institution, is not subject to NC state legislative regulations of public universities, and Wake Forest has a non-discrimination policy inclusive of sexual orientation and gender identity and expression:
https://titleix.wfu.edu/nondiscrimination-statement/

We are enthusiastic about developing a program that will work toward making our intellectual community more welcoming and accessible to all.  For this reason, we invite with special emphasis proposals for workshops, roundtables, and the like (creative formats welcome!) that will offer practical training about e.g. implicit bias, sexual harassment, racism, accessibility, developing diversity statements, and so forth.

The organizers (T. H. M. Gellar-Goad and Emily Austin) and the Program Committee of FemClas 2022 are committed to an inclusive, welcoming, and accommodating conference.  Submissions from graduate students, contingent and underemployed faculty, and independent scholars are especially welcome. Submissions from undergraduate students are also welcome and will be considered separately for a dedicated panel.  We will be able to provide reduced conference fees and some travel assistance for attendance by participants who cannot obtain institutional support.

CONTACT

Please contact T. H. M. Gellar-Goad at thmgg@wfu.edu with questions.

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An ornate carved gold square, at the center of which is a stylized horse with a small winged animal resting on its hind quarters. There are decorative patterns forming a border around the horse.

Classical Greeks often articulated a worldview that divided the world between Greeks and all other ethnic groups. This fundamental distinction served to justify war and slavery. The tragedian Aeschylus portrays non-Greeks as slavish and decadent in his Persians. Aristotle thought enslaving non-Greeks was a just cause for waging war (Politics 7.15.21). The Greeks called non-Greeks barbaroi, or “barbarians,” because of the unintelligible sounds of their foreign languages (they said bar bar). The historian Herodotus has long been a central figure in scholarly discourse about the creation and articulation of the boundary between Greeks and others.

View full article. | Posted in on Mon, 11/22/2021 - 10:34am by .
The Anthony Fauci Award in STEM and Classics
 
The Classical Association of the Middle West and South is pleased to announce the Anthony Fauci Award in STEM and Classics. This $500 annual award recognizes an undergraduate student who demonstrates outstanding work in both Classics and a STEM discipline (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics). Dr. Fauci graduated from the College of the Holy Cross in 1962 with a rigorous degree that required both pre-medical and advanced Latin and Greek courses.
View full article. | Posted in Awards and Fellowships on Sat, 11/20/2021 - 10:36am by Helen Cullyer.

Pushing the Boundaries:

African and Asian Interactions with the Ancient Mediterranean

26th Annual Classics Graduate Student Colloquium

Conducted virtually via Zoom

University of Virginia

View full article. | Posted in Calls for Papers on Sat, 11/20/2021 - 10:33am by Helen Cullyer.

NATURAL RESOURCES AND FLOURISHING IN ANCIENT GREECE (CFP)

April 22-24, 2022

This conference is dedicated to exploring issues pertaining to natural resources and their relation to individual happiness and successful political organization, as treated in ancient Greek literature, art, history, law, religion and philosophy. We welcome presentations on topics such as the following:  

1. Ancient Greek views on the amount and kinds of natural goods suitable for individual and political flourishing, and on the influence of such goods on human character and behavior.

2. Ownership of, and rights to, natural resources in Greek law and political theory.

3. Greek religious views on the divine dispensation (or withdrawal) of natural resources.

4. The depiction and personification of natural resources in Greek mythology and art.

5. The influence of the availability or lack of natural resources on lifestyle and migration in the ancient Greek world.

6. The just distribution of natural goods in ancient Greek thought.

7. Discussions and evidence concerning the contribution of natural resources to social cohesion and identity in Greek antiquity.

Keynote speaker: Lin Foxhall (University of Liverpool)

View full article. | Posted in Calls for Papers on Sat, 11/20/2021 - 10:29am by Helen Cullyer.
A black-figure vase depicting three chorus-men costumed as warriors, wearing individually crested helmets, “riding" three partners in horse costume.

A conspicuous theme in Aristophanic comedy is the civic motivation of Athenian citizens, which is presented as highly problematic. Judges and Assembly-goers are portrayed consistently as motivated not by any sense of civic duty but by monetary incentives — the misthos dikastikos and the misthos ekklēsiastikos, respectively. Some scholars have considered this portrayal of everyday citizens as narrowly profit-driven and utterly selfish to be proof of Aristophanes’ elitist and anti-democratic views. Indeed, such a commentary on civic motivation vis-à-vis incentives seems to align with that of Plato, whose Sokrates famously asserts that Perikles’ introduction of public payments made Athenians “idle, cowardly, talkative, and avaricious” (Gorg. 515e).

Yet an examination of Aristophanes’ plays through the lens of behavioral science allows for a radically different reading. This is the reading I offer in my dissertation, Enter homo oeconomicus: Civic Motivation and Civic Education in Aristophanic Comedy.

View full article. | Posted in on Fri, 11/19/2021 - 11:21am by .

Registration for the 2022 hybrid annual meeting is now open! If you would like to attend the meeting in person, you need to register on or before Friday, November 19 in order to obtain the early registration rate. Please note that there is no early rate for virtual attendance. You can register online here.

View full article. | Posted in SCS Announcements on Mon, 11/15/2021 - 12:14pm by Helen Cullyer.
A window display featuring books about Greek myth, a model of the Ishtar Gate, and a large papier-mache figure of Poseidon.

Growing up, one of my favorite shows was Star Trek: The Next Generation. At the risk of angering my fellow Trekkers, I am a Captain Picard guy all the way. In TNG and the subsequent movie, the concept of “First Contact” is a vitally important hinge point in human history. The term refers to the first time that one planetary civilization — in this case, humans — comes into contact with another, most famously the Vulcans. First Contact is something that is always meant to be planned, considered, and carefully done at precisely the right time. First Contact is also one of the guiding principles I follow as a middle school ancient history teacher. Instead of alien civilizations from space, I bring groups together across time, right here in my classroom — Ancient civilizations and modern 11-year-olds.

View full article. | Posted in on Mon, 11/15/2021 - 9:50am by .
A section of a painted fresco showing a woman with auburn hair tied into a low bun. She wears a laurel crown and a turquoise toga over one shoulder, and she looks down to her right.

The history of emotion studies

Emotion, generally referred to in the ancient world as pathos (from which we get words like sympathy and empathy), or adfectus (which refers to a state of body and/or mind and from which the word affect derives), is a term of fairly recent vintage. Coined in the mid-16th century, it became the expression of choice in the 19th. These days, it is most generally thought to refer to a strong feeling deriving from one's circumstances, mood, or relationships with others, but there is a long and ongoing debate about the precise nature and function of emotion that stretches back not only to Darwin and James, but also to the ancient world. Aristotle and the Stoics, for example, debated some of the same points that modern proponents of Affect and Appraisal theories of emotion do.

View full article. | Posted in on Fri, 11/12/2021 - 1:40pm by Jennifer Devereaux.
A book cover with a pink and white geometrically-patterned background. In the middle stands a cartoon man with a beard, a bald head, a toga, and a walking stick. He is surrounded by stars and symbols. A small, gray dog at his feet sniffs an ant.

Do you know any kids? Do they like books? Do you want to lure them down the path of Classical Studies before paleontology fever sets in? The good news is that there’s a new resource in development to help you do just that. I’m please to introduce Calliope’s Library: Books for Young Readers.

Figure 1: Bone Gap, by Laura Ruby. Krishni Burns writes, “I appreciate a modern-day Persephone who sets the curtains on fire to get the fire department’s attention, because trapped isn’t the same as helpless.”

Last year, the SCS blog provided several useful resources to help you find books for young Classics fans, among them Sarah Bond’s excellent post about titles that Classical scholars who are also parents have shared with their own children. In the post, Dr. Bond linked to a Twitter thread full of wonderful book recommendations. Twitter being what it is, that thread is now gone.

View full article. | Posted in on Mon, 11/08/2021 - 12:27pm by .

SCS is pleased to announce that the 2021 Outreach Prize Winner is Mallory Monaco Caterine (Tulane University). You can read the award citation below:

At its best, outreach work not only reaches out, but it also invites in. Exceptional outreach work welcomes members of the broader public into conversations about the ancient world and fosters meaningful relationships that inform and enrich all participants, whether they are scholars, students, or community members. In recognition of her exemplary work in this area, the Society for Classical Studies is pleased to award the 2021 Outreach Award to Mallory Monaco Caterine for her work with Nyansa Classical Community in New Orleans. 

View full article. | Posted in Awards and Fellowships on Mon, 11/08/2021 - 8:39am by Helen Cullyer.

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