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 (http://kam.illinois.edu/collection/ancient/), 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 (http://www.spurlock.illinois.edu/exhibits/permanent/med/).

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 (http://www.library.illinois.edu/clx/). 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 (xd@classicalstudies.org), 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 (xd@classicalstudies.org) 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 xd@classicalstudies.org 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 aaugoust@illinois.edu or by telephone at 217 333 7327.

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(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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SCS Member Scott Johnson has received a John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship. 

"Johnson’s Guggenheim project is a cultural biography of the language of Syriac. This will be the first book of its kind in English. It attempts to trace the origins, flourishing, and legacy of Syriac as an actor between empires in the late ancient and early medieval worlds."

You can read the full press release here.

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Photo: "Park Avenue" by Patrick Nouhailler, licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

View full article. | Posted in Classics in the News on Wed, 04/11/2018 - 9:43am by Erik Shell.
NEH Logo

SCS has received a grant in the amount of $157,200 from the National Endowment for the Humanities to support the TLL Fellowship program for three years, from academic year 2019-20 through 2021-22. The program, administered by the SCS, provides a one-year research fellowship to a scholar to work on the Thesaurus Linguae Latinae in Munich, Germany.

We are extremely pleased by this news and hope members will benefit from this program for years to come.

Yelena Baraz, Project Director

Helen Cullyer, Executive Director, SCS

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(Photo: "Logo of the United States National Endowment for the Humanities" by National Endowment for the Humanities, public domain, edited to fit thumbnail template)

View full article. | Posted in SCS Announcements on Mon, 04/09/2018 - 11:16am by Erik Shell.
Dancers and musicians, tomb of the leopards, Monterozzi necropolis, Tarquinia, Italy. UNESCO World Heritage Site. Fresco a secco. Height (of the wall): 1.70 m. 475 BCE. from Le Musée absolu, Phaidon, 10-2012, photographer Yann Forget. CC By 1.0.

In the third post in our independent scholars series, Ann Patty discusses her late in life discovery of Latin and her love of learning, teaching, and promoting Classics. 

I began to learn Latin as I approached the age of 60. After the recession of 2008 my highly leveraged company forced me into early retirement. I had been an editor and publisher for thirty-five years, an all-consuming career that kept my mind engaged and provided me with a community, a passionate purpose and a strong identity. Suddenly all those things were taken away. I retreated full-time to my country house, also forfeiting my identity as a New Yorker. I became an exile. I had participated in the chattering classes my entire adult life. On my rural plot of land in the Hudson Valley, the only chattering to be heard was that of chipmunks and squirrels. I needed words.

Words were my first and perennial friends. I’ve kept word lists since I was a child, and I still do. When I discover a new word, I feel a surge of delight. Soon after my retirement I discovered the word concinnity—the harmonious arrangements of parts, especially in writing, an expression so beautiful it rises to the level of music. I knew Latin was behind that word, as it is behind two-thirds of our English words. Latin is the home base of English words and grammar. If words were my first love, grammar was my second, a stern mistress whom I had served happily for all my years as an editor.

View full article. | Posted in on Wed, 04/04/2018 - 4:37pm by Ann Patty.
CFP: 2018 SAGP Annual Meeting
October 19-21, 2018
Christopher Newport University, Newport News, VA

Keynote Speaker: Nickolas Pappas

Panel Proposal Deadline: May 1

Paper Abstract Deadline: June 1

Submit abstracts and proposals to apreus@binghamton.edu.

Conference Website: http://christweedt.com/sagp.html

All participants must be members of the SAGP. To become a member, fill out the form linked to here and mail it to A. Preus, SAGP Philosophy, Binghamton University, 13902-6000.

View full article. | Posted in Calls for Papers on Wed, 04/04/2018 - 8:16am by Erik Shell.

The deadline for submitting:

  • All proposals for panels, workshops, seminars, and roundtable discussions.
  • Reports from organizers of committee, organizer-refereed, and affiliated group panels who have issued their own CFPs.
  • Proposals for organizer-refereed panels for 2020.
  • Applications for new affiliated group charters and for renewals of current charters.

is next Monday, April 9th. Individual abstracts are due April 25th.

Anyone hoping to submit an abstract or another proposal can do so on our program submission website.

View full article. | Posted in SCS Announcements on Wed, 04/04/2018 - 8:09am by Erik Shell.

(Provided by Roberta Berardi, Nicoletta Bruno, Martina Filosa, Luisa Fizzarotti)

We are delighted to share the Call for Papers for Prolepsis’ 3rd international Postgraduate Conference 
“Optanda erat oblivio”: Selection and Loss in Ancient and Medieval Literature
University of Bari, 20th-21st December 2018

Confirmed keynote speaker: Tiziano DORANDI (Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - Paris)

Prolepsis Association is delighted to announce its third international postgraduate conference whose theme will be the mechanisms of selection and loss in ancient and Medieval literary and historical texts. “Optanda erat oblivio” Seneca writes in benef. 5. 25. 2, referring to Tiberius’ wish for forgetfulness. We would like to use this quotation as a starting point for a discussion on the vast number of issues related to memory and oblivion in ancient and Medieval texts. This year the conference will be particularly keen on - but not limited to - the following topics:

View full article. | Posted in Calls for Papers on Tue, 04/03/2018 - 12:45pm by Erik Shell.

(Provided by David A. Reingold)

On Sun., March 25th, 2018, the College of Liberal Arts lost our dear colleague Professor Antonia Syson. Her friends and colleagues in the School of Languages and Cultures will remember Antonia for her passionate and intense dedication to all aspects of her work and for her exceptionally large laugh and cheerful whistling that brightened the hallways of Stanley Coulter.

Antonia received her BA with Honors from the University of Oxford in 1995, her MA in Latin from UC-Berkeley in 1997, and her PhD in Classics from UC-Berkeley in 2003. She joined the Classics faculty at Purdue in the School of Languages and Cultures in 2008. She authored the book Fama and Fiction in Vergil’s Aeneid, published in 2013 by Ohio State University Press. It was released in paperback last year. She was promoted with tenure in 2014. Antonia was a longtime chair of SLC’s community engagement project World Film Forum, and in 2014, Antonia was the lead coordinator on a grant from the Indiana Humanities Initiative that brought together K-12 and post-secondary teachers from across the state for the conference “Teaching the Past: Dissenting Histories in the Classroom.”

View full article. | Posted in In Memoriam on Mon, 04/02/2018 - 2:57pm by Erik Shell.
Adrienne Mayor with Nikos Solounias, still image from "Ancient Monster Hunters" (A&E Home Video, 2004)
In March, SCS editor-in-chief Sarah Bond interviewed ancient historian Adrienne Mayor, author of some of the bestselling books in the field of Classics, among them: The Amazons: Lives and Legends of Warrior Women across the Ancient World and The Poison King: The Life and Legend of Mithradates, Rome's Deadliest Enemy. We discussed Classics, pop-culture, writing for broader audiences, what it is like to consult with film and TV studios to help them recreate the ancient world accurately, and why the Amazons remain an inspiration even today.
 

Q. How did you first get interested in Classics and the ancient world?

My Book House (edited by Olive Beaupré Miller, 1920, with vivid illustrations) first introduced me to classical myths and world folklore. As a child I read those stories countless times. I reconnected with the ancient world at the University of Minnesota, where I combined classical studies, folklore, and history of science. Back then, I was mostly seeking stories to illustrate in my artwork.

View full article. | Posted in on Sat, 03/31/2018 - 10:24am by Adrienne Mayor.

Dear Members,

The deadline for submitting all proposals and reports except individual abstracts is 11:59 pm, Eastern Time, on April 9, 2018. This deadline applies to panels, workshops, roundtables, seminars, organizer-refereed panels, affiliated group panels, committee panels, and affiliated group charters.

The deadline for individual abstracts, including lightning talks, is 11:59 pm, Eastern Time, on April 25, 2018.

All submissions should be made through the SCS Program Submission system.

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View full article. | Posted in SCS Announcements on Fri, 03/30/2018 - 1:23pm by Erik Shell.

In the 6th century CE, a Scythian monk named Dionysius Exiguus was sent to Rome. Dionysius may have taken the monastic nickname of "the small" (exiguus), but his humility sheathed both his incredible abilities as a translator of Greek and Latin and his mathematical skills. He wrote and translated numerous saints lives, transcribed debates on heresies, and was known for his work with canon law. However, what Dionysius would be remembered for was his modifications to the dating system used within the Church and his attempts to use tables, called a computus, in order to track the date of Easter.  

View full article. | Posted in on Fri, 03/30/2018 - 4:59am by Sarah Bond.

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