Summer 2018 Seminar on Material Culture: Nominations for Graduate Student Participants

Call for Nominations

The Use of Art and Material Culture in Scholarship and Teaching

A Seminar in Material Culture for Graduate Students in Classics and Ancient History

Directed by Professors Antony Augoustakis and Daniel Leon

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

21 May – 29 June 2018

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana IL

Supported by generous grants from the Leon Levy Foundation and the School of Literatures, and Cultures and Linguistics of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

The Society for Classical Studies (SCS) invites doctoral programs in Classics or Ancient History to nominate a student to participate in a 6-week seminar that will introduce participants to the use of material culture in their scholarship and teaching. The aim of the seminar is to familiarize students with archaeological material that goes hand in hand with the historical and literary records, and how to incorporate such evidence into historical or philological research. This will be the third of three planned seminars with the same purpose, although each had a different focus.  The first took place at the J. Paul Getty Museum in 2016, and the second at Emory University in 2017.

Background. Despite new awareness of the scope of material evidence, and the ready availability of excellent images, all too often literary scholars treat images as decoration or illustration, while historians exploit the material record only gingerly. Probably more important than “literature” was the oral tradition, and the essential web of images that arose from it. Conversely, it has been wisely said of archaeology that it is a branch of ancient history.

This seminar offers students an opportunity to engage with the material record on a daily basis. Over the six weeks, every effort will be made to introduce the widest range of possibilities encountered in the archaeological record. Not only pottery and sculpture in bronze and marble will be considered, but also works in precious or exotic materials like ivory, gold, silver, amber, gems, glass, faience, and colored stones. Questions of manufacture and circulation will predominate: how these objects were made, by whom, for whom, why, and how to recognize them in the literary, historical and epigraphic record.

Resources and Faculty. Participants will have access to the University’s two teaching and research museums which hold extensive Greek and Roman collections. The Krannert Art Museum has a fine collection of Attic vases dating from the middle Archaic to the early Classical periods (, published as a fascicule in the Corpus Vasorum Antiquorum (USA, fasc. 24, 1989). The Spurlock’s Museum Workman Gallery of the Ancient Mediterranean Cultures features an extensive collection of artifacts (pottery, sculpture, coins) from Greece and Rome, as well as an incomparable collection of plaster casts reproducing the whole Parthenon frieze, the Ara Pacis and numerous individual sculptures (

Furthermore, the Classics Library Collection is among the three largest libraries of its kind in the nation, and one of the most important in the world ( The collection was initially enriched by the acquisition of the libraries of Dittenberger and Vahlen. Perhaps more than any other American institution of higher learning, the University of Illinois has tied its academic enterprise to the cultivation of its research library, and the Classics collection is one of its jewels: it is autonomous (all books and journals located in one space), on the second floor of the Main Library, adjacent to the primary Reading Room and the Main Stacks.

The course is co-ordinated by Professors Antony Augoustakis and Daniel Leon together with a group of scholars from the University and neighboring schools: Professor Susan Rotroff (Greek Archaeology, Washington University in St. Louis), Professor Sinclair Bell (Etruscan and Roman Archaeology, Northern Illinois University), Professor James Dengate (Greek Archaeology and Numismatics, UIUC), Professor Susan Frankenberg (Coordinator of Museum Studies, UIUC), Dr. Katherine Kreindler (Etruscan Archaeology, UIUC), Professor John Senseney (Greek and Roman Architecture, UIUC), Dr. Maureen Warren (Curator of European and American Art, Krannert Art Museum, UIUC).

Proximity to Chicago and St. Louis will allow participants to benefit from two excursions to visit the Art Institute of Chicago and the St. Louis Art Museum in order to study additional artifacts.

Schedule. The seminar is structured in broadly chronological terms, from Greece and the Near East to Rome and the West, including lectures on museum studies and modern technological advances. Three two-hour classes are planned around an over-arching theme each week, outlined in the synopsis. Additional two-hour sessions will provide students with guided study regarding their projects. Excursions to local artists’ workshops and to Chicago/St. Louis are planned for the end of each week.  Click here for a synopsis of the schedule.

Expectations of Students. Students will be evaluated based on a combination of exercises on each week’s instruction and a larger research project developed on an individual basis. We expect students to identify a project that suits their interests and uses University of Illinois resources. Each student will pursue their project under the supervision of one of the leading discussants in the seminar and in collaboration with Professors Augoustakis and Leon. The seminar will include mini-presentations on objects from the collections as well as on the individual projects of the students. At the conclusion of the seminar the directors will submit a written report to each student’s home department, assessing the student’s progress in working with material culture.

Logistics and Funding. Students selected for the seminar will be offered free accommodation at the University of Illinois (furnished apartments). Bus service is provided for transportation to the Museums and classrooms/library. As a campus of about 50,000 students, options for food and entertainment are many and multicultural. The University is located 130 miles south of Chicago. Champaign-Urbana is accessible by airplane (University of Illinois Willard airport, serviced by American Airlines and United with several daily flights to and from Chicago and Dallas), as well as Amtrak trains and numerous bus routes. In addition, thanks to the generosity of the Leon Levy Foundation, the SCS will provide a stipend of up to $2,000 to cover the cost of travel to and from Illinois, and modest out of pocket expenses. The SCS believes that these arrangements will offset many but by no means all of the costs of attendance at the seminar.

Nomination Process. Each doctoral program may nominate only one student for the seminar. The focus of the student’s academic work should be classical languages, literatures, and/or history and not archaeology or other areas of material culture. Preference will be given to graduate students who are still taking coursework or in the early stages of writing their dissertation. Nominators should elicit from potential applicants a CV and a statement of the value that the student expects to derive from attending the seminar, choose one applicant to nominate, and forward the CV and statement to the SCS Executive Director (, along with a brief endorsement. The student’s statement should be 500 to 700 words in length and should describe how the seminar would advance the applicant’s education and scholarly interests. The student him or herself should also email the Executive Director ( with full name, mailing address, phone number.

A committee consisting of Professors Antony Augoustakis and Daniel Leon as co-chairs and Professors Mary English (SCS Vice President for Education) and Donald Mastronarde (SCS VP for Publications and Research) will select participants from ten different academic institutions and a variety of countries of origin. Although many applicants from North America are expected, students from all countries are equally welcome. Reasonable fluency in English is the only requirement.

Nominations by departments and emails from student nominees including their full contact information should be submitted electronically to no later than 15 February 2018. The SCS will announce the decisions of the selection committee by the end of February. Questions about the seminar program may be directed to Professor Augoustakis at or by telephone at 217 333 7327.


(Photo: Marble Head of Empress Fausta. Gift of Betty Campanile, 1982.07.000. Image courtesy of the Spurlock Museum, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign)


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CALL FOR PAPERS: Manipulation of discourse in antiquity
Stellenbosch Winelands Classics
12-14 November 2018

This is an open invitation to scholars of antiquity to submit proposals for papers on the topic as set out below.

The conference aims to explore the phenomenon of discourse manipulation for the purpose of establishing and/or maintaining hegemony over views generally held by the public on a particular issue or event.  The aim is to focus on calculated control over public opinion in the political, religious, social, or similar spheres. This would include narratives that invent, reshape or guard over a particular point of view or version and purposeful selective memory on the one hand, and narratives that contest, marginalize and suppress alternative views by ignoring, labelling and smearing opposing voices on the other. The conference organizers will consider papers in the fields of ancient history, literature and material culture concerned with any form of public discourse management and ‘limiting the spectrum of acceptable opinion’ (Chomsky).

Please submit titles and abstracts of approximately 300 words to Philip Bosman ( or Annemaré Kotze ( by 31 May 2018. Further details on the conference will be communicated shortly after the deadline.

View full article. | Posted in Calls for Papers on Fri, 02/09/2018 - 2:01pm by Erik Shell.
Interiority in Roman Literature
Pacific Rim Roman Literature Seminar 32
University of Sydney, 11 to 13 July 2018

The thirty-second meeting of the PacRim Roman Literature Seminar will be held at the University of Sydney from 11 to 13 July 2018. The theme for the 2018 conference will be interiority in Roman literature.

Papers are invited to explore Roman literature’s inner voices, visions and narratives; psychologies; inner lives; the ‘inward turn’ of Roman literature at various periods, such as the first and fourth centuries; interior spaces; inner sanctums and circles of power. Roman literature is conceived of as the literature of Roman world from its earliest beginnings to the end of antiquity. The theme may be interpreted broadly, and papers on other topics will also be considered.

View full article. | Posted in Calls for Papers on Fri, 02/09/2018 - 9:57am by Erik Shell.

The following are the abbreviated introductory remarks to the “Harassment in Academia: Old Battles, New Frontiers” panel co-sponsored by the Women’s Classical Caucus (WCC) and the Committee for Gender and Sexuality in the Profession (COGSIP) at the annual meeting in Boston Jan 4-8, 2018. Notes from the panel and the coinciding workshop on sexual harassment can be found at Please note that the comments and ideas of SCS blog contributors are their own.

The idea for this panel first emerged last SCS as a result of series of events that included the online harassment of a colleague for her public scholarship and the silence of organizations within our field in her support. The rejection of a WCC sponsored roundtable on sexual harassment in academia by the SCS program committee (we resubmitted it this year as a workshop and it was accepted), and finally, the situation of a colleague who was facing retaliation when she reported sexual harassment by a Dean at her college and who has since resigned her position.

View full article. | Posted in on Wed, 02/07/2018 - 1:24pm by Rebecca Futo Kennedy.

Orality and Literacy in the Ancient World XIII

“Orality and Literacy:  Repetition”

The Department of Classics at the University of Texas at Austin invites all classicists, historians, religious studies and biblical scholars, and scholars with an interest in oral cultures to participate in the Thirteenth Conference on Orality and Literacy in the Ancient World, to take place in Austin (TX) from Wednesday 27 March 2019 to Sunday 31 March 2019.

The conference will follow the same format as the previous conferences, held in Hobart (1994), Durban (1996), Wellington (1998), Columbia, Missouri (2000), Melbourne (2002), Winnipeg (2004), Auckland (2006), Nijmegen (2008), Canberra (2010), Ann Arbor (2012), Atlanta (2014), and Lausanne (2016). It is planned that the refereed proceedings once again be published by E.J. Brill as Volume 13 in the “Orality and Literacy in the Ancient World” series.

Location:       The University of Texas at Austin

Dates:            Wednesday 27 March (registration that evening) to Sunday 31 March 2019

Theme:          Repetition

Keynote:        Professor Ruth Scodel (Classics, University of Michigan)

View full article. | Posted in Calls for Papers on Wed, 02/07/2018 - 10:41am by Erik Shell.

Extended deadline for Vergilian Society proposals to direct a Symposium in Italy in June 2019 

The Vergilian Society has extended the deadline for proposals to direct the twenty-fifth annual Symposium Cumanum, to take place at the Harry Wilkes Study Center at the Villa Vergiliana in Cuma in about the third week of June, 2019.  We will consider a proposal on any theme pertaining to Vergil and his times, although preference may be given to a subject that has not been treated recently.  Descriptions of previous symposia can be found on the Vergilian Society website, at

Each proposal should be prepared by the person who is intending to direct the symposium, or by the lead person if co-directors are envisioned.  The successful director will have logistical assistance from the Vergilian Society’s Italian staff and from the executive committee; a set of guidelines is available to assist in planning.

View full article. | Posted in Calls for Papers on Tue, 02/06/2018 - 12:16pm by Erik Shell.

Pedagogy Award Applications: March 2, 2018

The Pedagogy Award is open to pre-collegiate teachers and college and university faculty. Funds can be used to support travel abroad, conference attendance, or educational resources that will impact teaching and learning.

Zeph Stewart Award: March 2, 2018

The Zeph Stewart Award provides funding for those pursuing teacher certification.

Deadline to comment on draft Cultural Property statement: March 15, 2018

Nomination of books for the 2018 C.J. Goodwin Award of Merit: March 19, 2018

Ludwig Koenen Fellowship for Training in Papyrology: March 28, 2018


View full article. | Posted in SCS Announcements on Tue, 02/06/2018 - 10:14am by Helen Cullyer.

Position Announcement Editor, Vergilius 

The Board of Trustees of the Vergilian Society is seeking applicants for the position of editor for its journal Vergilius. Vergilius publishes annually peer-reviewed articles on all aspects of Vergil, along with the renowned annual Vergil Bibliography. Vergilius has a wide readership and good circulation. Recent updates to the journal include online publication with no window, expanded contributor base, and occasional columns (for pedagogy, broadly conceived, and reader response).

The Editor's term is three years, renewable once, beginning in January 2019. The Editor of Vergilius is also a member ex officio of the Executive Committee of the Vergilian Society, typically attending two meetings per year, one, usually via Skype, in the fall and one at the SCS meetings. She or he shall be responsible for all activities connected with the publication of the journal, excluding payment of publication and mailing costs, and shall submit an annual report to the Board of Trustees and to the General Membership. The Editor of Vergilius recommends to the Executive Committee Associate Editors, if any, and appointees to the Editorial Board. The Editor of Vergilius may receive an honorarium, subject to the approval of the Board of Trustees. 

View full article. | Posted in SCS Announcements on Mon, 02/05/2018 - 12:35pm by Erik Shell.

It is with great regret that we report the passing of Walter Sherwin, former professor and leader at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County campus.

"Early in his career at UMBC, he established what would later become the Ancient Studies Department, and after receiving a Fulbright grant to study in Rome in 1967, he developed the university's first study abroad program — an opportunity for UMBC students that continues today."

You can find the full story from UMBC's David Rosenbloom here.


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

View full article. | Posted in In Memoriam on Mon, 02/05/2018 - 9:51am by Erik Shell.

by Dr. Ellen Bauerle

After five years seeing the ebb and flow of classical practitioners’ thoughts about outreach, it’s time for me to step down as editor of Amphora.  I have very much enjoyed working with the many members of the Amphora editorial board – I’ve made some good new friends, learned about a lot of things going on in the international ferment we call classical studies – and made new discoveries about current pedagogical trends.  In the last five years Amphora  has moved from an all-print publication format, then to print + website, and now to website-only:  I am sure there will be additional developments upcoming as Amphora continues to change and adapt.

View full article. | Posted in on Fri, 02/02/2018 - 9:26pm by Wells Hansen.
Terracotta kylix (drinking cup)

Authors: John Jacobs, David J. Murphy, Ann R. Raia

Another of our new monthly columns here on the SCS blog explores the contributions of independent scholars within classics. There is a thriving community of classicists outside of the university system who, while often overlooked, are integral to the strength and survival of our field.

One constituency in our profession who can go unnoticed are those scholars who do research but are not affiliated with a college or university. Although professionally trained, they usually lack the support of a departmental community and the resources and recognition provided by institutional affiliation. Some of these scholars already participate in conferences organized by national and regional Classics organizations.  In 2015, SCS formed an Independent Scholar Advisory Group to discover the identity of these scholars and to strategize for their formal presence as colleagues in our traditional classical associations. In the same year, CAAS started to offer events for independent scholars at its annual conference. 

View full article. | Posted in on Thu, 02/01/2018 - 6:39pm by Ann R. Raia.


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