Norma Wynick Goldman (1922-2011)

October 11, 2011 was a remarkably beautiful afternoon to celebrate a  remarkably beautiful soul at the Community Arts Auditorium at Wayne State University in Detroit. And I was honored to be there to speak, not only on behalf of Wayne State University and the Department of Classical and Modern Languages Literatures and Cultures, but also on behalf of the  American Classical League, the American Philological Association, the Classical Association of the Atlantic States, the Classical Association of the Middle West and South, the Classical Association of New England, the Classical Society of the American Academy in Rome,  the Michigan Classical Conference and the classics honor fraternity, Eta Sigma Phi: each of which asked me to present  their condolences.

Norma Wynick Goldman(1922-2011) was an ambassador for Wayne State University in general, and for the discipline of classical studies in particular.  She was associated with Wayne State in one way or another for more than six decades beginning in 1939 when she enrolled  as an undergraduate. For such a small person she had a very long reach --and truth be told her reach never seemed to exceed her grasp.  She was by discipline a Latinist with a broad range of interests in the classical world  both near and far. In 1957 to further interest in Greece and Rome among high school teachers and the community at large, she and Dr. Edith M.A. Kovach (1921-2009) founded the Detroit Classical Association. Norma’s work won her a Distinguished Alumni Award from Wayne State in 1985, an Ovatio from the Classical Association of the Middle West and South in 1988, and a Merita Award from the American Classical League in 2006.

Her books include:

1)Latin via Ovid,  coauthored with Dr. Jacob Nyenhius, professor of classics at Wayne from 1962-1975. Accompanying the textbook, she developed a workbook entitled Practice! Practice!   Now in its 3rd edition,  Latin Via Ovid is Wayne State University Press’s  best selling book of all time!

2) English Grammar for Students of Latin which she coauthored with Ladislas Szymanski in 1983.

3) The Janus View From the American Academy in Rome: Essays on the Janiculum, coauthored with Katherine Geffcken,  (American Academy in Rome, 2007).

 4)New Light from Ancient Cosa which was a set of articles continuing the pioneering work of Frank E. Brown (1908-1988) begun in 1947 at Cosa, to which Norma contributed her own essay (Peter Lang, 2001).

5)  Cosa, the Lamps, coauthored with Cleo Fitch,  which studied the oil lamps found at Cosa (University of Michigan Press, 1994).  

Norma had the  “hands on” approach of a craftsman. She  was in fact a potter and a seamstress. These talents led her to try recovering the formula for Roman concrete and to reconstructing the awning over the Colosseum- both of which were featured on television by BBC’s  Nova  in 1995.  Her keen interest in Roman styles of dress and Roman foot-wear resulted in more than 30 live fashion shows presented here and abroad,  and 2 essays published in The World of Roman Costume (University of Wisconsin Press. 1993). In 1993 she made an hour long video called “Let’s Wrap:1000 Years of Roman Costume” with Mary Yelda and George Booth. The video was distributed by the Teaching Materials and Resource Center of the American Classical League and it taught viewers how to dress like a Roman. As a recent audience member  in attendence at  a live presentation  said:“I really want to be 80 years old and still teaching Latin like the “Let’s wrap” lady, Norma Goldman. No joke, I watched two live hours of ancient Roman runway at my first ACL convention and that woman is a firecracker.” http://www.aclclassics.org/store/multimedia/dvd/let-s-wrap-ars-vestiendi.html (10/17/2011)

Norma also made a special study of Detroit’s own architect Albert Kahn (1869-1942). To us at Wayne State University he is known as the architect of the little Pantheon, the former Temple Beth El on Woodward Avenue, which today houses the University’s Bonstelle Theater.  Norma designed  a class about Kahn, his buildings,  and his work for Henry Ford, and she led  many “Albert Kahn” tours around the city. Few of us know that Albert Kahn himself evinced his deep interest in Graeco-Roman antiquity by membership in the American Philological Association  (1924-1942).

Norma was no armchair scholar. Truth be told she was  an unusually intrepid traveler. She crossed the Atlantic to work at the American Academy in Rome 31 years in a row. Her last trip was in the fall of 2010, and in the words of Dr. T. Corey Brennan, Andrew W. Mellon Professor, American Academy in Rome“there was not a walk, talk, bus trip, lecture, conference, or concert that she missed.”  It is no surprise that  Dr. Mel Ravitz,(1924-2010) Wayne State University Professor Emeritus of Sociology and Detroit City Council member (1962-72; 1982-97) called Norma “a spark plug.” As a member of the Council, Dr. Ravitz was delighted  when she,  Dr.  Michaela Sampson and I brought students from  Dr. Sampson’s Latin classes at Martin Luther King High School to perform an excerpt of their Latin play in the Council chambers during the early 1990s.

To many Norma’s most notable achievement was maintaining the perennial joy in learning that runs through every aspect of her work. Her books, her lectures, and her life were bathed in the warm glow of her exuberant enthusiasm. And those around her caught fire in the refractions of  her light. Norma was excitement personified. And now  the Kalends of this October—October 1, the Saturday she left us --- has revealed a beautiful symmetry in the circuit of Norma’s life as a scholar and as a spouse. For she recently  finished a work of scholarship that had interested her husband, Dr. Bernard M. Goldman (1922- 2006) from his days at the University of Michigan as a student of Dr. Clark Hopkins, (1895-1976) professor of classical art & archaeology. Their book, My Dura Europos The Letters of Susan M. Hopkins, 1927-1935, (which gives readers an inside view of  Dr. Clark’s excavations at this remote outpost of the Roman empire through the eyes of his wife Susan),  is due out from Wayne State University Press this November.  The completion of My Dura Europos represents both the intersection and the circumference of Norma’s and Bernard’s life together. It is also a final lesson  from this master teacher and scholar instructing us to look to the imago suae vitae to find her lasting legacy. We are all her best students now!Norma Wynick Goldman was buried on October 5, 2011 next to her husband of sixty-one years at the Mt. Sinai Cemetery in Phoenix, AZ. She is survived by their son Mark, daughter-in-law Carolyn, and  two beloved grandchildren, Liam and Grace,  of Phoenix, AZ.

Michele Valerie Ronnick

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Given the rapidly changing situation in the present moment, a conference in January 2021 looks a long way off. But planning for our 152nd annual meeting in Chicago has already begun, and it will intensify in the months between now and then. Indeed we are making both plans and contingency plans, because the SCS will hold its annual meeting in some form. It may resemble past meetings, or it may involve remote participation; it is impossible to predict what circumstances will require. But the process of compiling the academic portion of the program will proceed (almost) as usual, with a (remote) Program Committee meeting in June in which the committee discusses the abstracts and proposals submitted through the online submission system. Only after the panels and papers have been selected and arranged can planning begin for the rest of the program: the committee meetings, the business meetings for affiliated groups, the interviews, the receptions, and all of the other meeting events

View full article. | Posted in SCS Announcements on Tue, 04/07/2020 - 2:42pm by Helen Cullyer.

In his history of the long and costly war between Athens and Sparta, the historian Thucydides explained that he had written his narrative to be “a possession for all time” and to be of assistance to those of future generations “who want to see things clearly as they were and, given human nature, as they will one day be again, more or less."1 Thucydides was a shrewd observer and analyst of human behavior, and his work has frequently been cited in times of crisis by those who see patterns in history.  At the famous ceremony dedicating the battlefield cemetery at Gettysburg in 1863 at which Lincoln also spoke, former Secretary of State Edward Everett delivered a eulogy

View full article. | Posted in on Fri, 04/03/2020 - 8:10am by .

As we all contend with the unprecedented challenges presented by the COVID-19 Coronavirus, I want to start by highlighting a gratifying fact: the indispensable expert and voice of reason, Dr. Anthony Fauci, Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, majored in Classics as an undergraduate at Holy Cross!  This is a timely and inspiring reminder that Classics majors go on to distinguish themselves in many different careers and to perform many kinds of vital service.

I also want to emphasize that, despite the ongoing crisis, the SCS is fully up-and-running. Our three fulltime staff members, Helen Cullyer, Cherane Ali, and Erik Shell, have made a seamless transition to working remotely, thanks to careful advance planning on their part. They are maintaining regular business hours even as they work remotely, and are available to help our members however they can.

View full article. | Posted in Presidential Letters on Sun, 03/29/2020 - 2:22pm by Helen Cullyer.

­­The Classics Everywhere initiative, launched by the SCS in 2019, supports projects that seek to engage communities worldwide with the study of Greek and Roman antiquity in new and meaningful ways. As part of this initiative the SCS has been funding a variety of projects ranging from reading groups comparing ancient to modern leadership practices to collaborations with artists in theater, music, and dance. In this post we focus on projects that bring creativity and science into the Classics classrooms of secondary schools from California to Louisiana, New Jersey, and New York.

View full article. | Posted in on Fri, 03/27/2020 - 6:25am by .

The SCS Board of Directors has endorsed a statement by the American Sociological Association on faculty review and reappointment during COVID-19.

Read the statement and full list of signatories at this link

https://www.asanet.org/news-events/asa-news/asa-statement-regarding-faculty-review-and-reappointment-processes-during-covid-19-crisis

View full article. | Posted in Public Statements on Mon, 03/23/2020 - 4:26pm by Helen Cullyer.

As the pandemic known as COVID-19 grips the globe, thousands of instructors in the United States and elsewhere have been asked to transition their courses online for the remainder of the semester. To some instructors, such as the superb Classics professors at the Open University, distance learning has become a normalized pedagogy. To many others facing teaching online: this is uncharted territory.

View full article. | Posted in on Fri, 03/20/2020 - 8:43am by Sarah E. Bond.

Please see the following on access to digital resources during COVID-19:

1. The digital Classical Loeb Library recently announced that it is making its subscription free to all schools and universities affected by COVID-19 until June 30, 2020. Librarians should email loebclassics_sales@harvard.edu for more details. In addition, SCS members can access the library for free until June 30, 2020 via the For Members Only page of our website. Log on to https://classicalstudies.org and access the For Members only page via our Membership menu. 

2. Johns Hopkins University Press and a number of publishers that contribute content to Project Muse are making books and journals freely accessible for several months. JHUP journals include AJP, TAPA, and CW. 

View full article. | Posted in SCS Announcements on Thu, 03/19/2020 - 9:03am by Helen Cullyer.

Results and materials from the Classics tuning project we've mentioned in prior newsletters are now available publicly. See the below press release from the project's authors for full details:

THE ACM CLASSICS TUNING PROJECT: REPOSITORY OF MATERIALS

View full article. | Posted in SCS Announcements on Wed, 03/18/2020 - 11:02am by Erik Shell.

We're proud to announce the digital publication of "Careers for Classicists: Undergraduate Edition." This work is a completely new version of our previous "Careers for Classicists" pamphlet, providing the latest insights on how undergraduate classics majors can best prepare for jobs in a variety of fields.

You can read this newest publication in our online book format here: https://classicalstudies.org/careers-classicists-undergraduate-edition

We'd like to thank Adriana Brook, Eric Dugdale, and John Gruber-Miller for doing so much work in putting this volume together. The print version of "Careers" will be available in a few months, and will be one of several benefit choices for departmental membership.

And, in case you missed it, you can read the Graduate Student version of this publication here: https://classicalstudies.org/careers-classicists-graduate-student-edition

View full article. | Posted in SCS Announcements on Mon, 03/16/2020 - 12:51pm by Erik Shell.
We realize that this is a time of unprecedented turmoil, disruption, and challenge in all our personal and professional lives. SCS is delaying deadlines for 2021 annual meeting program submission in the hope that some extra time will be helpful to anyone planning to submit. The new deadlines are:
 
- April 21 (by 11.59pm EDT) for all submissions other than individual abstracts and lightning talks
- April 28 (by 11.59pm EDT) for all individual abstracts and lightning talks
 
As circumstances change, we will continue to adapt. While it is too early to say what effect COVID-19 will have on our annual meeting in January 2021, we will adjust as necessary and provide an annual meeting in some form. 
 
View full article. | Posted in SCS Announcements on Sun, 03/15/2020 - 4:26pm by Helen Cullyer.

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