In Memoriam: Robert A. Seelinger

(Written by Ted Tarkow)

An alum of Dickinson, Brown, and the University of Missouri (MU), Bob Seelinger (1951-2018) taught classics at Westminster College in Fulton, MO, from 1979 until taking early retirement in 2015, necessitated by a diagnosis of pancreatic cancer.  By the time of his death, he had served as professor of classics for over 20 years and in addition had served as Dean of the Faculty and Vice President of the College for over a half dozen years at the campus made famous by the “Iron Curtain” speech delivered there   in 1946 by Winston Churchill.

A beloved teacher, Bob taught all levels of both languages as well as a wide range of general education courses.  Not surprisingly to the scores of Westminster students who had studied with him, he received the APA Award for Excellence in the Teaching of the Classics, the Governor’s Award for Teaching, and the Parents’ Association Award for Teaching, among many other recognitions.    But his career also allowed presentations and publications in some of his favorite authors, from Apuleius (the focus of his PhD dissertation), to 4th century, Republican, and early Imperial authors and genres.  His abundant time at the American School of Classical Studies in Athens, as well as at two NEH Summer Seminars, enabled other students and scholars to make the most of their time there.

A devoted family man, Bob met his wife Cathy Callaway, herself an accomplished professional in the field, when they both studied classics at MU where their son, not surprisingly, also majored in classics, as well as in political science. The family enjoyed traveling together, most notably to Greece, where they enjoyed three different sabbatical  years, the last one in 2005-06.

Until just weeks before he passed away, Bob was working on two projects:  an update of William Parrish’s Westminster College, An Informal History (with Margot McMillen) and an analysis  (with Cathy Callaway) of a Greek funeral stele (2nd-3rd century A.D.) dedicated to Heliodora in the Museum of Art and Archaeology at MU.   He never lost his zeal for research, and his love of teaching.

The proud tradition of classics in the “Show Me” state is honored to acknowledge, with abundant admiration, the life and legacy of a talented exemplar of our profession, a true kalos kagathos for whom more modern adjectives seem especially appropriate:   learned, kind, thoughtful, and brave.

(Written by Cathy Callaway)

ROBERT ADAM SEELINGER died on September 22, 2018, on his father’s birthday, after a four- and a-half-year battle with pancreatic cancer. He was born at Walter Reed Hospital in Washington DC on October 16, 1951. An Eagle Scout, he attended Rogers High School in Newport, Rhode Island, and Dickinson College, in Pennsylvania. He spent his junior year in Rome. He received an MA from Brown University, and a PhD in Classics and Classical Archaeology from the University of Missouri-Columbia in 1981. Seelinger learned Latin at an early age and continued to read, write, and teach it his whole life. He was also a scholar of ancient Greek, and during his three sabbatical years in Greece he became fluent in Modern Greek.

He moved to Columbia, MO in 1974 to pursue his PhD in the Department of Classical Studies. He started teaching Latin and other Classics courses part-time at Westminster College in 1979. The position became full-time and tenure-track in 1981.

From 1999-2005 he served as Dean of Faculty and Vice President of the College. He was a leader in the initiative to start a Westminster campus in Mesa, AZ and was grateful for the support and dedication of all those who were involved in that project. He was gratified by the fact that many of the Mesa students continued their Westminster experience on the Fulton campus. He was deeply moved by the retirement celebration he shared with other colleagues in 2016.

He is survived by his wife, Cathy Callaway, his son, Nicholas Seelinger, his sister, Barbara (Robert) Beebe of Middletown RI, and nephew Adam Carter of Tacoma WA, and two great nephews. He also leaves behind a beloved host of relatives on Cathy’s side that consider him family; several were present at his peaceful death in his home. Thanks to the people at Hospice Compassus and Dr. Anna Hulbert for making this possible. We would also like to thank ALL the health care professionals, at the University Hospital in Columbia, at Mayo in Rochester MN, at Barnes in St Louis, and the Emergency Technicians in Fulton, who showed such compassion, care, and expertise every time they worked with him to cope with the challenges of this disease.

Celebration of Robert's life will be 2:00 pm Sunday, October 21, 2018 at the Church of St. Mary Aldermanbury located on the Westminster College Campus, 501 Westminster Ave. in Fulton, Missouri. A reception will follow the service. In lieu of flowers, contributions can be directed to either Westminster College, Mayo Clinic in Rochester MN, or the Fulton Soup Kitchen c/o Debo Funeral Home, 833 Court Street, Fulton, Missouri 65251.

---

(Photo: "Candle" by Shawn Carpenter, licensed under CC BY 2.0)   

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The automated system for the 2013-2014 APA Placement Service is now open and accepting registrations by candidates, subscribers, and institutions.  As was the case last year, registrants will need to create an account and then purchase the service(s) they wish.  Registrants who used the Service last year may (but are not required to) adopt the same username and password as before; however, they will still need to create a new account

Please read these detailed instructions for registering for the service and taking advantage of its features. 

Please note the following important changes in the service this year.

View full article. | Posted in SCS Announcements on Mon, 09/30/2013 - 9:10pm by Adam Blistein.

In the recent election, the members voted to accept the recommendation of the Board of Directors that we should change the name of our organization to “Society for Classical Studies”, with “Founded in 1869 as the American Philological Association” as a permanent subtitle.  In keeping with the truly remarkable dedication and commitment of our membership, 43% of our members voted in this election, at a time when other learned societies report that only 10-15% of their members typically vote in online elections and ballots.  This is the highest participation rate that our Executive Director, Adam Blistein, has seen in the fourteen years of his tenure, and it is probably the highest ever.

View full article. | Posted in SCS Announcements on Wed, 09/25/2013 - 3:44pm by Adam Blistein.

With great sadness, the members of the Department of Classics at Grand Valley State University mourn the passing of our dear friend and colleague, Barbara Flaschenriem.

Barbara passed away on August 15, 2013, at Spectrum Health Butterworth Hospital in Grand Rapids, Michigan, following a long illness. Initially appointed in the Department of English in 1998, she became a founding member of the Department of Classics in 2000.

Professor Flaschenriem held the Ph.D. in Comparative Literature from the University of California at Berkeley. Prior to joining Grand Valley, she held faculty appointments at Seton Hall University and Yale University. Her teaching and scholarship were informed by aspects of feminist theory focusing upon representations of women in Roman literature and society. Her writing was marked by great subtlety and intellectual grace. Colleagues and students cherished her unassuming but wry demeanor and her intense passion in the classroom. Prof. Flaschenriem was at work on a monumental study of the Roman poet Propertius that was left uncompleted at her death.

A memorial gathering was held at the Alumni House on GVSU's Allendale campus on Sunday, September 8.

View full article. | Posted in In Memoriam on Sun, 09/15/2013 - 9:13pm by .

It is with deep regret that the Department of Classics and Mediterranean Studies at the University of Illinois Chicago announces the death of our former colleague Alexander MacGregor, retired associate professor of Classics specializing in Latin poetry. He passed away peacefully at his home in Chicago on August 8, 2013, after a brief but severe illness. He was a distinguished scholar and his love of teaching made him a gifted mentor, much admired by his students.  A memorial service will be held at 10AM, on Saturday, September 14th at St. Ignatius Church in the Rogers Park neighborhood near Loyola. The service will be followed by a gathering of friends and family in the parish hall.

View full article. | Posted in In Memoriam on Thu, 09/05/2013 - 8:58pm by Adam Blistein.

Congratulations to Antony Augoustakis, one of ten faculty members at the University of Illinois to be named a Centennial Scholar in honor of the 100th anniversary of the creation of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences: http://www.las.illinois.edu/news/2013/centennialscholars/.

View full article. | Posted in Member News on Fri, 08/23/2013 - 8:41pm by .

At the Joint Annual Meeting in Seattle in January 2013 the Placement Committee organized a panel on nonacademic employment opportunities for Ph.D.s in Classics and Archaeology.  Follow this link (https://placement.apaclassics.org/alternative-employment) to read about the panel, hear audio clips of the presentations, and see a list of resources discussed at the panel.

We are very grateful to Committee Chair, David Potter, and his colleagues Betsey Robinson and Mike Lippman for their work in organizing this session.  Thanks are also due to the seven speakers who gave us permission to offer their talks online.

View full article. | Posted in SCS Announcements on Fri, 07/26/2013 - 7:48pm by Adam Blistein.

The automated system for the 2013-2014 APA Placement Service is now open and accepting registrations by candidates, subscribers, and institutions.  As was the case last year, registrants will need to create an account and then purchase the service(s) they wish.  Registrants who used the Service last year may (but are not required to) adopt the same username and password as before; however, they will still need to create a new account

Please read these detailed instructions for registering for the service and taking advantage of its features. 

Please note the following important changes in the service this year.

View full article. | Posted in SCS Announcements on Fri, 07/26/2013 - 1:53pm by Adam Blistein.

The members of the Department of Classical Studies at Duke University regret to announce the passing of their colleague, Lawrence Richardson, Jr. at the age of 92. An obituary appeared on July 25, 2013, in the Raleigh News and Observer.

View full article. | Posted in SCS Announcements on Thu, 07/25/2013 - 7:46pm by Adam Blistein.

8th Trends in Classics
Thessaloniki International Conference on Roman Drama

May 29-June 1, 2014  

(To be held in Auditorium I,
Aristotle University, Research Dissemination Center
September 3rd Avenue, University Campus  
http://kedea.rc.auth.gr)

Roman Drama and its Contexts

Scholarship, especially in the past, has been reading Roman drama from the perspective of its relation to Greek and Roman prototypes, and its historical context and evolution. Contemporary readings, following recent groundbreaking work based on intertextual, dramatological, performative, psychoanalytical, feminist, gender oriented approaches, philosophical analysis and aesthetics, etc., offer new valuable insights into Roman drama’s poetics and cultural impact.

The conference aims at focusing on the interpretation of Roman comedy, tragedy and the fragments on the basis of such diverse approaches, as mentioned above. By highlighting the various aesthetic, social and historical parameters, the papers are expected to explore ways in which Roman comic and tragic texts fit into their narrower and/or broader textual and cultural contexts.

Organizing Committee

View full article. | Posted in Conferences, Lectures, and Meetings on Wed, 07/24/2013 - 8:23pm by .

The APA is a member of the National Humanities Alliance (NHA), a consortium of over a hundred scholarly and professional associations; higher education associations; organizations of museums, libraries, historical societies and state humanities councils; university-based and independent humanities research centers; and colleges and universities.  NHA monitors national legislation and policy affecting the humanities and informed us this week that the Appropriations Committee of the U.S. House of Representatives has recommended that the 2014 fiscal year appropriation for the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) be $79 million, a 49% reduction from its 2013 appropriation of $154.3 million. 

The NHA’s web site contains more information about this recommendation as well as a mechanism that APA members can use to write to their Representatives about a level of funding that would seriously reduce the NEH’s ability to support research in the humanities and share the work of humanities scholars with a wider public.

View full article. | Posted in SCS Announcements on Tue, 07/23/2013 - 5:13pm by Adam Blistein.

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