Also seen: “Ancient Slut-Shaming”

A piece at Jezebel:

… which seems to take its start from a review of Roller’s Cleopatra: A Biography at the Christian Science Monitor:

… and its conclusion from a guest post by Vicky Alvear Shecter at Gary Corby’s blog:

Sophocles (et al) and Modern Medicine

One of the ‘missing  in action’ items in my mailbox (from July!) … from the Boston Globe:

Sounds of agony pour from the man at the front of the room, his face red and convulsed with pain.

“Death!’’ he shouts, imploring someone, anyone, to end his life, his shrieks filling the amphitheater. “Death! Why after all these years have you not appeared?’’

The wailing man is an actor. His part is that of a Greek hero-warrior begging to be euthanized as a burning poison eats away at his flesh. His lines were written more than 2,000 years ago by Sophocles, the Greek playwright. And his audience this evening consists mainly of doctors, more accustomed to saving lives than to ending them.

As medical technologies extend the lives of the sickest, medical schools across the country have struggled to find a way to help doctors better navigate new moral quandaries around death and dying. The recent performance of scenes from Greek plays at Harvard Medical School represents one of the more unusual and emotionally powerful approaches.

Called End of Life, the program uses ancient Greek tragedies to spark discussion among medical students and professionals about the ethics of treating patients facing painful, prolonged deaths.

Several professors, doctors, and students who have taken part in End of Life agree that the 90 minutes of raw, honest theater and emotional discussion add a dimension of reality to medical ethics education that textbooks cannot.

“An awful lot of what goes on in taking care of patients involves feelings, like trust and hope and compassion,’’ said Christine Mitchell, a nurse and director of the office of ethics at Children’s Hospital Boston. Mitchell attended both of the performances Harvard has hosted this year. “We usually focus on the head part and not the heart part. It’s not easy to combine the two.’’

If Bryan Doerries, the project’s founder, has his way, more medical schools will employ ancient Greek drama to strengthen their medical ethics programs. The two scenes used in the End of Life readings illustrate the ethical dilemmas and emotional baggage that complicate medical situations for the terminally ill, their families, and caregivers.

“This was dramatically different than what we had done before,’’ said Dr. Sadath Sayeed, who teaches Harvard Medical School’s ethics class and helped bring the program to the school. “It’s a lot about emotion, the feelings, the experience itself. It’s harder to get that in a classroom.’’

Still in its infancy, the End of Life project is not yet on any school’s list of ethics requirements. Doerries, a New York-based educator trained in the classics, will take it to the University of Virginia next fall, where students and faculty across disciplines will judge for themselves the relevance of Greek tragedy to modern medicine.

Of the 133 medical schools in the United States, most teach some form of medical ethics as part of their standard curriculum, a representative of the American Association of Medical Colleges said.

Classroom topics range from research ethics and genetic testing to informed consent and euthanasia, often discussed in light of case studies doctors can draw on in making their decisions.

But a study published in 2008 in the American Journal of Hospice and Palliative Medicine found that doctors’ stance on end-of-life topics depended on other factors, such as religious affiliation, ethnicity, and experience in treating dying patients. Those with strong religious beliefs, for example, were about four times more likely to object to physician-assisted suicide than those without such beliefs.

In light of that, it becomes imperative that medical students receive training early that stresses the emotional aspects of medicine, Sayeed said.

One of the scenes in the End of Life readings is from “Women of Trachis,’’ in which Heracles, accidentally poisoned by his wife, implores his son to stop his searing pain by building a pyre, tying him to it, and lighting it on fire.

“It had this line, ‘I am asking you to be my doctor,’ and he is begging his son to kill him,’’ said Spencer McClelland, a third-year Harvard medical student who attended the End of Life session in March. “A lot of these things are really intangible when you’re a student. To have anything that humanizes them before you go through this face-to-face with a patient is invaluable.’’

Several medical schools have pioneered innovative teaching methods that take a more holistic view of medicine and ethics. Columbia University’s Program in Narrative Medicine, already a decade old, teaches doctors how to foster empathy with patients and interpret their stories of suffering as a means to promote healing.

Still, Doerries believes theater has an impact classes cannot achieve. “Theater has a power to destroy hierarchy,’’ he said. “Not forever, but for long enough for those in the audience who may be intimidated to speak.’’

Sitting in front of an audience of about 60 people, Rabbi Herman Blumberg, a chaplain at Boston’s Hebrew Rehabilitation Center, talked at last month’s End of Life performance about the complicated obligations that arise when illness sentences patients to a life of pain.

He described the emotional impact of watching the actor’s anguished scream as a tearing of the soul.

“I’m going back to it again and again and again,’’ he said. “The realization of just how painful pain is. I find myself listening more fully with my whole being.’’

via:  Screams from Greek stage aim for doctors’ hearts – The Boston Globe.

Illo Modo Volvo Redux

Front side Volvo truck.

Image via Wikipedia

Last month we mentioned how Dennis of Campus fame was involved in a dispute with Volvo over the ‘illo modo volvo’ (i.e. ‘That’s how I roll’) t-shirt he was marketing. In an interesting bit of synchronicity, Road and Track has a feature on how various car companies got their names. Here’s the excerpt of interest to us:

Some car company logos owe their existence to legalities and economies of scale. In 1909, having left the company bearing his name, August Horch established a second automobile company in Zwickau, Germany. But with his name already in use, Horch had a serious problem. He couldn’t legally name his new company after himself. However, when translated into Latin, “Horch”—which means “hark”—became the lawyer-friendly “Audi.” The four interlinked Audi rings came about in 1932, when four struggling automakers joined together under the corporate banner of Auto Union. These companies included Audi, DKW, Wanderer and, ironically, the original Horch.

Volvo also has Latin roots. Meaning “I roll,” the name was taken from a brand of ball bearings before it was applied to the Swedish automaker in 1924. The Volvo logo is the Roman symbol for iron—symbolizing a warrior’s shield and spear. The diagonal streak across the grille was originally only a mounting point for the badge, but is now “almost as much a brand ID as our iron symbol,” says Daniel Johnston, Product Communications Manager at Volvo Cars North America.

… not sure where they get the ‘Roman symbol for iron’ stuff; perhaps it’s a Roman symbol for Mars. I can’t find any connection of this symbol with “iron” except in conjunction, interestingly enough, with Volvo.

CONF: KYKNOS Research Seminars

Seen on Classicists (please send any responses to the people/institution mentioned in the post, not to rogueclassicism!):

Please see below for a research seminar programme for the current semester. All are welcome to attend; please contact Owen Hodkinson (o.hodkinson AT tsd.ac.uk) or Marta Garcia Morcillo (m.morcillo AT tsd.ac.uk) for directions or other information.

University of Wales Trinity Saint David (Lampeter campus)

School of Classics and KYKNOS research seminars, Semester 1

KYKNOS seminars (marked as such below) begin at 6pm; all others at 5.15pm. All seminars take place in the Roderic Bowen Reading Room on the Lampeter campus.

11/11 Dr Kyle Erickson / Trinity St David ‘The Origins of Seleucid Ruler Cult in Asia Minor’

25/11 Dr Ika Willis / Bristol ‘Vergil and Dante: Society of the Friends of the Text’

2/12 Stephen O’Connor / Columbia ‘Why did Classical Greek armies ravage their enemies’ territory?’

9/12 Drs Ivana & Andrej Petrovic / Durham ‘Greek metrical sacred regulations and issues of authority’

16/12 Dr Alexander Meeus / Trinity St David ‘Did Diodorus Siculus present himself as a compiler? The self-fashioning of a Hellenistic historian’

CONF: Greek History Lectures @ Oxford

Seen on Classicists (please send any responses to the people/institution mentioned in the post, not to rogueclassicism!):

Wednesday, November 3, 5.00 p.m., The Ioannou Centre, 66 St Giles

Christophe Chandezon (University of Montpellier III), ) ‘Artemidorus’ dreambook : new readings for historians of the Graeco-
Roman world.’

Thursday, November 4, 2- 5.30 p.m., The Ioannou Centre, 66 St Giles

Colloquium on Greek Rural History

2.00 p.m. Nicholas Purcell (St John’s College), ””Farming” in Antiquity: the agent and the activity’

2.50 p.m. Robin Osborne (University of Cambridge) ‘Classical landscapes and rural histories’

4.00 p.m. Christophe Chandezon (University of Montpellier III), ‘Figures in a Classical Landscape. Do individuals offer a new way to
understand Greek agrarian history?

Wednesday, November 17, 5.00 p.m., The Ioannou Centre, 66 St Giles

Jeremy McInerney (University of Pennsylvania), ‘Herakleides Kritikos: Periegesis and the Origins of Middle Brow Aesthetics’

All interested persons very welcome!

CONF: Expurgation and The Classics

Coat of Arms for Corpus Christi College, Oxford
Image via Wikipedia

Seen on Classicists (please send any responses to the people/institution mentioned in the post, not to rogueclassicism!):

The Corpus Christi Centre for the Study of Greek and Roman Antiquity
Presents a Colloquium on Expurgation and The Classics
Corpus Christi College, Oxford, Saturday 13th November 2010.

This one-day colloquium (c.10.00-6.15) looks at expurgation in classical scholarship and education and the strategies it has used to deal with obscene and other textual material in conflict with Christian and other post-classical values.

Speakers : Ewen Bowie, Valentine Cunningham, Stephen Harrison, Tim Leary, James Morwood, Dan Orrells, Ian Ruffell, Christopher Stray, Gail Trimble. Cost £10.00 to include coffee, lunch and tea (please pay cash on the day); graduate students of Corpus, no charge. If you would like to attend, please register with Prof. Stephen Harrison at Corpus (stephen.harrison AT ccc.ox.ac.uk).

Classical Association of Canada Sight Translation Competition

Seen in the Canadian Classical Bulletin (please send any responses to the people/institution mentioned in the post, not to rogueclassicism!):

Classical Association of Canada: Sight Translation Competitions in Greek and Latin
Société Canadienne des Études Classiques: Concours national de versions grecque et latine

National sight examinations in Greek and Latin for Canadian students at both the university and high school level will be held in January of 2011:

–January 13, 2011: National Latin Sight Translation Competition for High School Students
–January 20, 2011: Junior Latin Sight Translation Contest; Senior Latin Sight Translation Contest (Peter Lawson Smith Prize)
–January 27, 2011: Junior Greek Sight Translation Contest (Margaret H. Thompson Prize); Senior Greek Sight Translation Contest

Deadline for application submissions: 17 December 2010

Please note: Submissions should be presented by departments, not by individual students or faculty. Please submit only one application per institution.

For more information and the procedure for application, please visit:

http://cac-scec.ca/eng/concours_versions.html

or contact:

Dr. Alison Barclay
Assistant Professor of Classics
Dept. of Modern Languages and Classics
St. Mary’s University
Halifax, NS  B3H 3C3
Tel:  (902) 420-5816
Fax:  (902)  491-8694
E-mail: Alison.Barclay AT smu.ca
– – –

Société Canadienne des Etudes Classiques: Concours national de versions grecque et latine

Le concours national de versions grecque et latine aura lieu en janvier 2011:

–13 janvier 2011 Concours de version latine improvisée pour les écoles secondaires
–20 janvier 2011 Concours national de version latine, niveau intermédiaire; Concours national de version latine, niveau supérieur (Peter Lawson Smith Prize)
–27 janvier 2011 Concours national de version grecque, niveau intermédiaire (Margaret H. Thompson Prize); Concours national de version grecque, niveau supérieur

Date limite d’inscription: 17 décembre 2010

Les demandes d’inscription au concours doivent être envoyées par les insitutions. Chaque institution est priée de présenter une seule fiche de demande.

Renseignements: pour plus d’information, veuillez suivre le lien ci-dessous:

http://cac-scec.ca/eng/concours_versions.html

ou soumettre votre demande à:

Dr. Alison Barclay
Assistant Professor of Classics
Dept. of Modern Languages and Classics
St. Mary’s University
Halifax, NS  B3H 3C3
Téléphone:  (902) 420-5816
Télécopieur:  (902) 491-8694
Courriel: Alison.Barclay AT smu.ca

CONF: Durham Work-In-Progress Seminars (Michaelmas Term)

Seen on Classicists (please send any responses to the people/institution mentioned in the post, not to rogueclassicism!)

WORK-IN-PROGRESS SEMINARS (Wednesdays 1-2 pm)

MICHAELMAS TERM 2010

Venue:
Durham University, Department of Classics & Ancient History, 38 North
Bailey, Durham DH1 3EU, Room no. 108 (first floor)

Week 2 (Wednesday 13 October 2010)
Professor Ingo Gildenhard (Durham University):
“Cicero’s De officiis. Roman Republican Ethics in a Platonizing Key”

Week 4 (Wednesday 27 October 2010)
Professor Edward Harris (Durham University):
“Were There Business Agents in Classical Greece? The Evidence of Some Lead
Letters”

Week 5 (Wednesday 3 November 2010)
Professor J. David Thomas (Durham University):
“Some Unpublished Latin Writing Tablets from Vindolanda”

Week 6 (Wednesday 10 November 2010)
Professor George Boys-Stones (Durham University):
“Did Plato Believe in God?”

Week 7 (Wednesday 17 November 2010)
Professor Barbara Graziosi (Durham University):
“Divine Inspiration and Narrative Technique in the Iliad”

Week 8 (Wednesday 24 November 2010)
Dr Matthew Peacock (Durham University):
“The Valerii Laevini. A Dynasty of Republican ‘Greek Experts’?”

Week 9 (Wednesday 1 December 2010)
Professor Paola Ceccarelli (Durham University):
Title TBC

Week 10 (Wednesday 8 December 2010)
Dr Johannes Haubold (Durham University):
“The Role of Babylon in Ctesias’ Persica”

Contact:
PD Dr. Thorsten Fögen: thorsten.foegen AT durham.ac.uk

CONF: Durham Research Seminars 2010/2011

Durham University coat of arms

Image via Wikipedia

Seen on Classicists (please send any responses to the people/institution mentioned in the post, not to rogueclassicism!)

RESEARCH SEMINARS 2010/2011

Venue:
Durham University, Department of Classics & Ancient History, 38 North
Bailey, Durham DH1 3EU, Ritson Room (no. 007, ground floor)

MICHAELMAS TERM 2010:

Week 1 (Thursday 14 October 2010, 11.30 am-1:00 pm):
Dr Federico Santangelo (Newcastle)
“Divination and prediction in the Late Republic”

Week 2 (Thursday 21 October 2010, 11.30 am-1:00 pm):
LETTERS (1):  Professor Gillian Clark (Bristol)
“Read My Book: Letters and the City of God”

Week 3 (Thursday 28 October 2010, 11.30 am-1:00 pm):
LETTERS (2):  Professor Harry Hine (St. Andrews)
“Philosophical and non-philosophical communities in Seneca’s Letters”

Week 4 (Wednesday 3 November 2010, 5:30-7:00 pm):
Professor Annette M. Harder (Groningen)
“Poetics through poetry. The poetic dialogue of Callimachus and Apollonius
Rhodius”

Week 4 (Thursday 4 November 2010, 11.30 am-1:00 pm):
CANCELLED

Week 5 (Thursday 11 November 2010, 11.30 am-1:00 pm):
Professor Michael Trapp (KCL)
“Picturing Socrates’ daimonion”

Week 6 (Thursday 18 November 2010, 11.30 am-1:00 pm):
LETTERS (3):  Dr Kurt Lampe (Bristol)
Topic TBC

Week 7 (Thursday 25 November 2010, 11.30 am-1:00 pm):
LETTERS (4):  Dr Sian Lewis (St. Andrews)
Topic TBC

Week 8 (Wednesday 1 December 2010, 5:30-7:00 pm):
Professor Jasper Griffin (Oxford)
“Human Sacrifice and the Ultimate Demand of Power”

Week 8 (Thursday 2 December 2010, 11.30 am-1:00 pm):
LETTERS (5):  Dr Miriam Griffin (Oxford)
“Symptoms and Sympathy in Latin Letter-Writing”

Week 9 (Thursday 9 December 2010, 11.30 am-1:00 pm):
Dr Dominic Berry (Edinburgh)
“Cicero and Greek Art”

EPIPHANY TERM 2011:

Week 1 (Thursday 20 January 2011, 11.30 am-1:00 pm):
LETTERS (6):  Professor William Fitzgerald (KCL)
Pliny the Younger

Week 2 (Thursday 27 January 2011, 11.30 am-1:00 pm):
LETTERS (7):  Dr Christopher Whitton (Cambridge)
Pliny the Younger

Week 3 (Thursday 3 February 2011, 11.30 am-1:00 pm):
Prof. Dr. Marcus Deufert (Leipzig)
On Lucilius’ Satires

Week 4 (Thursday 10 February 2011, 11.30 am-1:00 pm):
LETTERS (8):  Prof. Dr. Thomas Schmitz (Bonn)
On letters in the Second Sophistic

Week 5 (Thursday 17 February 2011, 11.30 am-1:00 pm):
LETTERS (9):  Prof. Dr. Christian Tornau (Würzburg)
On St. Jerome’s letters

Week 6 (Thursday 24 February 2011, 11.30 am-1:00 pm):
LETTERS (10):  PD Dr. Bianca-Jeanette Schröder (LMU München)
Topic TBC

Week 7 (Thursday 3 March 2011, 11.30 am-1:00 pm):
LETTERS (11):  Prof. Dr. Niklas Holzberg (LMU München)
“Horace’s last poetry book: The epistolary trilogy for Augustus, Florus and
the Pisones”

Week 8 (Thursday 10 March 2011, 11.30 am-1:00 pm):
LETTERS (12):  Professor Ineke Sluiter (Leiden)
“Letters of dedication in ancient technical texts”

Week 9 (Thursday 17 March 2011, 11.30 am-1:00 pm):
LETTERS (13):  Dr Lieve van Hoof (KU Leuven)
On Libanius’ letters

EASTER TERM 2011:

Week 1 (Thursday 28 April 2011, 11.30 am-1:00 pm):
LETTERS (14):  Dr Ruth Morello (Manchester)
“Writing to Caesar”

Week 2 (Wednesday 4 May 2011, 1:00-2:00 pm, room 108):
LETTERS (15):  Dr Owen Hodkinson (Lampeter)
“Dear Sirs: Writing to collectives in the Greek epistolary tradition”

Week 2 (Thursday 5 May 2011, 11.30 am-1:00 pm):
Professor Jakob Wisse (Newcastle)
“The bad orator in republican Rome. Between clumsy delivery and political
danger”

Week 3 (Thursday 12 May 2011, 11.30 am -1:00 pm):
Professor Gregory Hutchinson (Oxford)
“Booking lovers. Desire and design in Catullus”

Contact:
PD Dr. Thorsten Fögen: thorsten.foegen AT durham.ac.uk