From President Denis Feeney: Gateway Campaign's End is New Beginning for APA

After three weeks, the 144th Annual Meeting in Seattle is receding into history, and it is a good moment to take stock of what a successful meeting it proved to be.  The host department from UW-Seattle, led by Ruby Blondell and Alain Gowing, did a superb job, and we thank them all for helping to make the Meeting such a success.  Even the Northwest weather cooperated to make Seattle a great venue for us: on my fourth visit to Seattle I finally got to see Mt. Rainier.  There was a tremendous program of panels and performances, even if your officers, including the President, were unable to emerge from their seclusion in committee rooms to enjoy more than a small fraction of the riches on offer.

In the Plenary Session, we honored a remarkable group of teachers and scholars for their achievements. From the point of view of our Association’s history and future, the most significant moment in the Plenary Session was the celebration of the triumphant conclusion of the Gateway Campaign, steered to its harbor by President Jeffrey Henderson.  It was a delight to see the Campaign Committee members being honored, and to see Distinguished Service Awards presented to the three visionary and energetic APA members who provided such outstanding leadership from the beginning to the end of the Campaign: Ward W. Briggs, David H. Porter, and Michael C.J. Putnam.

The Campaign has been such a part of our lives for the last few years that it is important to take stock of what a remarkable achievement it has turned out to be.  For a comparatively small society such as ours to raise over $3 million is truly extraordinary.  Major sums were contributed by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation ($625,000), NEH ($650,000 in matching funds), and by our sister organization in the UK, the Classical Association ($265,000).  But of particular note, I think, is that we received contributions from over 1,200 donors, and that more than 1,000 of these donors were members of the APA.  This means that more than a third of our individual members contributed to the Campaign—a signal achievement.  Not many colleges or universities can claim such a high response to an appeal, and the response of our members is a significant testimony to the loyalty that members of the APA feel towards their organization and towards the cause of Classics overall.

It is, after all, the cause of Classics that this Campaign has been all about, and it is already changing the APA, and what we all do as Classicists, for the better.  Thanks to the Gateway Campaign, the future of the American Office of L’Année philologique is now secure right into that indefinite future for which development campaigns have to plan.  Every time you read, or write, a work of scholarship you are indebted to L’Année philologique, and it was absolutely right that the foundation of the Campaign should be the goal of securing the future of this indispensable bedrock of what we do.  Worth noting also is that, in addition to its generous support of the Campaign, the Mellon Foundation has independently provided a number of other grants that are making the online version of L’Année even more useful.

It was also part of our goal from the start to develop the next generation of inspired, diverse teachers of Classics and Classical Languages.  The new awards for teachers are an important commitment to that objective, encouraging and acknowledging outstanding teachers.  Every member of the APA is in the field, ultimately, because of at least one inspirational teacher.  The importance of these life-changing individuals was attested by the success of the various Friends Funds to which members contributed so generously in honor of the teachers who inspired them: the Friends of Zeph Stewart Fund is being dedicated to the Awards for Classics Teachers.

We also made a commitment to increasing support for the Minority Scholarship in Classics, and a gift from the Gladys Krieble Delmas Foundation to the Campaign is permitting us to fulfill that promise.  Have a look at the list of previous recipients to see what a difference these awards can make to young people at a crucial phase in their development.  Read about the impact that digging at Stabiae and attending the Epigraphical Congress in Berlin made on the formation and motivation of Mahmoud Akeen Samori (awardee in 2012); or read about the possibilities opened up to Timothy Castillo (2010) by an award that made it possible for him to take an intensive Greek summer course in preparation for graduate school.  Many more young people will be able to have such doors opened for them in the future thanks to APA members’ support.

More broadly, we aim to make the APA website a gateway for anyone classical for anything classical.  We are working on this now, aiming to transform our website so as to provide access to research tools and make it possible for individuals to reach the groups or the sites that they need.  These individuals will of course include our usual current constituency of graduate students and faculty, but they will also range from the high school student writing a paper on Cleopatra to the former Classics major who wants to check up on what’s happening in the area in which she once wrote a Senior Thesis.  Classics was the leader in Digital Humanities from the very beginning, and we will continue in that role.  There are plans in place for a Digital Latin Library, for example; read here for a taste of what will be possible for students and scholars once this resource is enabled.

None of this would have been possible without the well-informed and movingly generous support of the members of the APA.  Thank you, everyone.

Denis Feeney


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From the SCS Board of Directors, approved 6/3/20

The Society for Classical Studies condemns the relentless horror of police brutality and murder of black men, women, and children, including George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Atatiana Jefferson, Rekia Boyd, Sandra Bland, Ahmaud Arbery, Tony McDade, Freddie Gray, Eric Garner, Trayvon Martin, Tamir Rice, and Rodney King, to name just a few of the victims. Brutality perpetrated by the police and others stands with mass incarceration and unequal access to healthcare, education, and housing as symptoms of longstanding systemic, structural, and institutional racism in American and European cultures. These are deep problems in society that will not be fixed without radical policy changes at every level of government and across all institutions.   

View full article. | Posted in Public Statements on Wed, 06/03/2020 - 6:20am by Helen Cullyer.

The new 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 digital projects that engage with ancient texts and discuss the study of Classics during the coronavirus pandemic and beyond.

View full article. | Posted in on Fri, 05/29/2020 - 7:55am by .

Fellowships, Scholarships, and Grants, January – April 2020

Some of our short-term fellowship and Classics Everywhere award winners are deferring use of their awards until Fall 2020 or 2021 owing to COVID-19. However, we congratulate everyone who was awarded a scholarship, fellowship or grant this spring, and we thank our selection committees for their hard work.

TLL Fellowship:

Amy Koenig

Pearson Fellowship:

View full article. | Posted in Awards and Fellowships on Wed, 05/27/2020 - 5:32pm by Helen Cullyer.

Please see below a message from the SCS President, followed by a listing of 2020 graduates:

View full article. | Posted in Presidential Letters on Mon, 05/25/2020 - 12:11pm by Helen Cullyer.

The Arabic and Latin Glossary (hereafter al-gloss) is a free, online dictionary of the vocabulary used by medieval translators, primarily working in eleventh- to thirteenth-century Italy and Spain, to render the Arabic versions of Greek scientific and philosophical texts and original Arabic compositions into Latin. It is parallel, in terms of its scholarly goals and methodology, to the database Glossarium Graeco-Arabicum (hereafter gloss-ga), which is also run out of Germany but by a different team. In this review, I will refer to gloss-ga because it offers a point of comparison for assessing al-gloss’ editorial decisions and accessibility.

View full article. | Posted in on Fri, 05/22/2020 - 3:23pm by .

Loeb Classical Library Foundation Postdoctoral Fellowships in Classics


The Trustees of the Loeb Classical Library Foundation announce funding of four two-year postdoctoral fellowships to be held in the academic years 2021–2023. [A further four fellowships will be funded for the academic years 2022–2024] The details for the first round of competition for these fellowships are as follows:

View full article. | Posted in Awards and Fellowships on Thu, 05/21/2020 - 2:30pm by Helen Cullyer.

Many congratulations to Erik Shell who graduates today with his M.A. in Education Policy from NYU. Erik has been working part-time on his degree while working full-time for SCS in many roles. He runs the the Placement Service, works on social media and our website, coordinates our departmental membership program, edits video, and does so many other things. Thank you, Erik, for everything you do for SCS and its members, and congratulations on a well-deserved Masters degree!

View full article. | Posted in SCS Announcements on Wed, 05/20/2020 - 8:09am by Helen Cullyer.

Have you ever thought about a terminal MA in Classics?

I have to confess, I hadn’t before coming to teach at Boston College, where we have such a graduate program. I had firsthand experience with Classics BAs in colleges that only granted undergraduate degrees, BAs and MAs in PhD-granting departments — heck, even a combined BA/MA program. But a freestanding MA degree that was a purposeful end goal rather than an add-on, an along-the-way, or a no-more-thanks? It never crossed my mind. To judge from the conversations that I’ve had since joining a department with a terminal MA program, I think that’s true of a lot of Classics faculty, as well as for a lot of students. And I also think that has led to some unfortunate misunderstandings about terminal MAs and their contributions, both to the field as a whole and to the personal and professional development of individual students.

View full article. | Posted in on Fri, 05/15/2020 - 8:26am by Christopher Polt.

Barbara K. Gold is Edward North Professor of Classics at Hamilton College, Emerita. She received her B.A. at the University of Michigan in 1966, her master’s degree in 1968 and her doctorate in 1975, both from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Her research focuses on Greek and Roman literature, particularly Roman elegy, lyric, and satire; medieval literature, culture, and history; Roman social history; women in the ancient world; and feminist criticism. A prolific author and recipient of numerous grants and awards, Professor Gold was the first woman editor of The American Journal of Philology from 2000 to 2008 and is currently Vice President for Professional Matters of the Society for Classical Studies. She has also served on numerous college committees and was Associate Dean of Faculty at Hamilton College (1997-2001).

View full article. | Posted in on Fri, 05/08/2020 - 5:01am by Claire Catenaccio.


On behalf of the Society for Classical Studies (SCS), the Erich S. Gruen Prize Committee invites all graduate students in North America to enter the first annual competition for the best graduate research paper on multiculturalism in the ancient Mediterranean. This year the prize will be a cash award of $500. 

View full article. | Posted in Awards and Fellowships on Thu, 05/07/2020 - 6:55am by Erik Shell.


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