Birmingham Crisis Redux … in a Bad Way

Yesterday Edith Hall informed the Classics International facebook group that the crisis at the University of Birmingham which we learned about last summer was going down the road everyone feared. Here’s a somewhat edited version of her comments:

Yesterday, selected non-professorial Classicists, Ancient Historians and Archeologists received letters from the (Classicist) Pro-Vice-Chancellor Michael Whitby informing them that their posts have been selected to go into a pool from which redundancies are proposed. Three redundancies in Classics/AH out 12 lecturers, senior and junior; in Archaeology, five lecturers out of seven plus all 8.8 Research staff. Professors are completely protected.
These proposals will be presented to the College Council on Wednesday 3rd October, which is terrifyingly soon. Since writing to Professor Whitby himself has so far had little effect, members of this group are encouraged to write immediately to the Vice-Chancellor himself,
Professor David Eastwood,
The University of Birmingham
Edgbaston, Birmingham, B15 2TT
United Kingdom.

email: d.eastwood AT,

I have no idea of the identity of the source of any of the information I have posted here, which has arrived anonymously. The contents of the letter to staff in the redundancy “pool” can only be disclosed with Professor Whitby’s written permission or it will be treated as a disciplinary matter.

… note that date of October 3 … obviously any emails would best be sent as soon as possible.
Some background:

An Archaeological Appeal ~ Colonia Ulpia Traiana Ratiaria

I’m not sure I’ve seen one of these ‘Causes’ things before, but the Bulgarian Archaeological Society is apparently seeking some assistance in regards to the site of Colonia Ulpia Traiana Ratiaria:

Here’s some info from their page:

The Bulgarian Archaeological Association (BAA) along with Association “Ratiaria” have set themselves the goal of attracting the attention of the international community and to raise funds to protect Colonia Ulpia Traiana Ratiaria. This archaeological site was one of the most important Roman and Early Byzantine centres in the lower Danube area which in the past 20 years was targeted by treasure hunters and destroyed.

Since 2008, the Bulgarian Archaeological Association carried out rescue actions on the territory of Ratiaria. For several years we have discovered 14 new Latin inscription, over 700 artifacts, more then 15 new monumental buildings, and over 20 new legionary stamps. In 2010 was uncovered the well preserved main street (decumanus maximus) of the city. All these data show that Ratsiaria is not irretrievably lost for the Roman archeology.

More here:


Nuntii Latini Graecique

A couple of weeks’ worth … didn’t have time last week, alas …

  • Nuntii Latini from YLE (September 21):

Manifestationes in mundo crebrae

His diebus cives in compluribus mundi partibus variis causis excitati reclamitaverunt. Brevis pellicula magnetoscopica in interreti divulgata, in qua propheta Mahomed blasphematur, in terris islamicis iram civium in Americanos vertit.

In Aegypto, Tunisia, Libano, Sudania multi vitam amiserunt, cum vigiles impedire conarentur, ne turba tumultuantium in sedes diplomaticas Americanorum penetraret. In Pakistania, Iemenio, Somalia islamistae extremi musulmanos incitaverunt, ut Americanos aggrederentur. Reclamationes in viginti fere terris fuerunt et die Sabbati etiam in Australiam et insulas Maldivenses extendebantur.

Inter Sinenses et Iaponienses vetus de insulis Senkaku sive Diaoyu discordia adeo crebruit, ut manifestationes contra Iaponiam in compluribus urbibus Sinarum exsisterent. Matriti, in capite Hispaniae, complura dena civium milia convenerunt, ut contra consilia regiminis oeconomica reclamitarent. Itemque Olisipone Portugalliae, ubi plus centum milia hominum vectigalia aucta et rigorem oeconomiae reprobantes agmine facto incesserunt.

alii from September 21: Iaponia ab energia nucleari desistet … Cellulae vivae mammuthi repertae? … Castra Romanorum veterrima in Germania

… and on the Nuntii Graeci side

Akropolis world news Ὁ Ἀχμαδινεῖαδ ἐν τῷ Ἡνωμένων Ἐθνῶν Ὀργανισμῷ ἀγορᾶται (September 28) … Ἅμιλλα περὶ νήσων τινῶν (September 25 … same page) … Τὸν ”μανιώδην Βαρρέρα” ἐν τῇ Βενεζουέλῃ καταλαμβάνουσιν (September 20 … ditto)

CFP: Classics and the Great War (APA, January 2014)

seen on various lists:





Organizer: David Scourfield, National University of Ireland, Maynooth

The Committee on Classical Tradition and Reception (COCTR) of the American Philological Association invites submissions for a panel to be held at the 145th Annual Meeting of the APA (Chicago, January 2-5, 2014), on the theme ‘Classics and the Great War’.

The Great War of 1914-1918 marks a watershed moment in European and world history in numerous ways. The panel envisaged will seek to consider the impact of that conflict on the field of Classics in a variety of respects. The Committee wishes in particular to invite proposals for papers on (a) literary receptions of classical texts or the classical world during or in the wake of the War, with a purview extending beyond the British war poetry which forms the subject of Elizabeth Vandiver’s Stand in the Trench, Achilles (2010), a study from which the panel draws much impetus, (b) the impact of the War on the scholarly reception of specific classical texts, in Britain, Germany, the United States, or elsewhere; but proposals on any other aspects or forms of reception, or on the cultural contexts within which such receptions were formulated, are also welcome. The panel will be restricted to receptions not later than the end of the 1920s.

Proposals for papers taking no more than twenty minutes to deliver should be sent via e-mail attachment (in Word format) to Professor Mary-Kay Gamel, APA Vice President for Outreach (mkgamel AT, by no later than November 15, 2012. Abstracts should follow the guidelines for the preparation of individual abstracts to be found on the APA website at All submissions will be subject to double-blind review by two referees and the panel as a whole evaluated by the APA Program Committee before notification of final acceptance. The Committee reserves the right to include in the full panel submission abstracts from invited speakers as well as abstracts selected through this call for papers.

CFP: CRASIS : Cultural Encounters in the Ancient Mediterranean

seen on the Classicists list:

Cultural Encounters in the Ancient Mediterranean
Keynote speaker & Master: Martin Goodman (Oxford)

We want to invite PhD and Research Master Students, PostDocs, as well as
senior researchers to take part in the second CRASIS Annual Meeting and
PhD/MA Masterclass on 21–22 January 2013.

CRASIS is the interdisciplinary research institute on the ancient world at
the University of Groningen. Researchers from Classics, Religious Studies,
Ancient History, Archaeology, Ancient Philosophy and Legal History are
involved, focusing on Greek and Roman societies as well as on Jewish and
Near Eastern civilizations and on the interaction between these.

The CRASIS Annual Meeting and Masterclass is a two-day event, set up as an
informal meeting place for students at PhD or Research Master level,
postdocs and senior staff to promote discussion, and exchange of ideas
beyond disciplinary boundaries.

We are very proud to announce that this year’s Key-note Speaker and Master
is Professor Martin Goodman (Oxford University). Professor Goodman is a
leading expert on ancient Judaism within its Graeco-Roman context:

The theme of this year’s Annual Meeting and Masterclass will be:

Cultural Encounters in the Ancient Mediterranean

Although many of us are trained to look at the ancient world from one
cultural (or academic) perspective, we are all aware that the ancient world
was both culturally diverse and interconnected. This meeting takes as its
starting point the impact of encounters between cultures, groups and
individuals. It seeks to understand how we should define ‘;cultural
encounters’; and explore what kind of models we should use to approach these

What are the advantages and disadvantages of recent theoretical positions
including hybridity, ’tissage, cultural transfer, frontier studies,
postcolonialism, entangled or shared histories, intertextuality,
multilingualism or rational choice theory? How does our understanding of
the ancient world change if we consider the role of cultural encounters in
shaping historical development, literary and artistic traditions as well as
religious and political systems? How can we trace and value the movements
of commodities, texts, religious, or cultural practices, political
institutions and ideas over the ancient world? What happened when these
were transmitted between very different cultural spaces, and how did the
encounters affect the parties involved? What were the mechanisms of these
cultural encounters, and what kinds of persons or social forces were

You may focus on the encounters between individuals and groups, on the
wider processes of exploration or colonization of which the encounters were
the result, or on the products of these encounters, including literary
texts, material objects or systems of belief. You may discuss processes of
accommodation, or situations of resistance and conflict. You are invited to
explore and (to assess critically) one or more recent theoretical


We invite senior researchers to submit a title and short abstract for a
twenty-minute presentation on the first day of the Annual Meeting.
PhD and Research Master Students are invited to submit a topic proposal
(500 words) for the Masterclass on the second day explaining their research
in relation to this year’s theme.
Proposals for both days should be submitted no later that 31 October 2012
with m.popovic AT

MA/PhD Students: Once your proposal has been accepted, ReMa students should
submit 3000-4000 words essays and PhD students 5000-6000 words essays
before 21 December 2012 so that the papers can circulate among the
participants. At the Masterclass ReMa students have ten minutes to briefly
introduce their paper and PhD students have twenty minutes. After each
presentation follows discussion under the expert guidance of Professor

We will soon start a local reading and study group in preparation for the
Annual Meeting and Masterclass. If you are interested, please get in touch
with o.m.van.nijf AT

For more information, see:

CFP Shifting Frontiers X ~ The Transformation of Literary and Material Genres in Late Antiquity

seen on various lists:

See also our website at ; a poster (pdf) can be downloaded at

Call for papers, Shifting Frontiers in Late Antiquity X, The Transformation of Literary and Material Genres in Late Antiquity

The tenth biennial Shifting Frontiers in Late Antiquity conference will take place at the University of Ottawa, Canada, 21-24 March 2013. The period of Late Antiquity (A.D. 200-700) witnessed great cultural changes on a number of levels, e.g. in the emergence of new literary genres (such as hagiography) or of new building types (such as churches) or of new objects of art (consular diptychs).

The aim of the conference is to explore what exactly these changes were, and how and why they came about: were they the consequence of long-term trends or developments? Or were they rather the result of external factors, the products of what was once termed ‘an age of anxiety’? We hope to receive proposals of papers concerning the many genres that came into being or were transformed during the period, whether they be literary genres, such as panegyric, rhetoric, historiography, chronicles, poetry, epistolography and hagiography, or material genres, such as architecture, epigraphy, and numismatics. The term ‘genre’ is thus interpreted broadly, and papers that bring together several genres to address this issue, e.g. to consider Procopius’ Buildings both as panegyric and as a source on images of the city in Late Antiquity, or to consider the portrayal of saints in both hagiographies and artistic representations, are particularly welcome.

Three keynote speakers will be taking part in the conference: Professor John Matthews of Yale University (U.S.A.), Professor Pierre-Louis Malosse, Université Paul-Valéry, Montpelier (France), and Dr Wendy Mayer (Australian Catholic University, Brisbane).

The deadline for proposals is 15 November 2012. Abstracts should be 200-300 words in length. Papers may be in English or French. Proposals from graduate students are welcome, but they should indicate on their submission whether they have discussed their proposal with their supervisor or not.

Proposals should be sent to: shiftingfrontiersx AT

CONF: Praise and the Construction of Character in Late Antiquity, 10-11 May 2013

Seen on the Classicists list:


A conference to be held at the National University of Ireland, Maynooth, 10–11 May 2013

Imperial panegyrics, funeral speeches, liturgical hymns, saints’ lives: the act of praise was deeply woven into the literary and cultural fabric of late Antiquity. As these examples suggest, such acts belonged to a wide range of social situations and types of text, and participated in a variety of cultural discourses. Every act, however, was closely concerned with the construction of character, the creation of ‘image’: the object of praise (male or female, living or dead, human or divine) was formed no less than mirrored by the praise itself.

The aim of this conference is to explore the praise-literature of late Antiquity with particular emphasis on character-construction and image-creation. Questions which we seek to address include the following: To what extent is the character of the laudandus shaped by rhetorical traditions? How much is owed to representations of character in earlier texts and to ancient ideas of character? How important are exempla (positive and negative) in the construction of character, and how far is the object of praise him-/herself constructed so as to be exemplary? How significant are generic considerations? To what extent are specific images the product of precise historical circumstances? What kinds of function are served by textually constructed images, and how might such images impact on the behaviour of the laudandus or of readers? How important are the relationships between praise-giver, praised, and audience/readership in the construction of image? How far do praise-givers use eulogistic situations for purposes of self-promotion and self-fashioning?

Confirmed speakers:
Christopher Kelly (University of Cambridge) (keynote lecture)
Virginia Burrus (Drew University)
Marco Formisano (Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin)
Bruce Gibson (University of Liverpool)
David Scourfield (NUI Maynooth)
Michael Trapp (King’s College London)
Lieve van Hoof (Katholieke Universiteit Leuven)
Catherine Ware (NUI Maynooth/University of Liverpool)
Michael Williams (NUI Maynooth)

For further information, contact the organizers:
david.scourfield AT
catherine.ware AT
michael.williams AT

Bryn Mawr Classical Reviews

  • 2012.09.59:  Marcello Spanu, The Theatre of Diokaisareia. Diokaisareia in Kilikien: ergebnisse des Surveys 2001-2006, Bd 2.
  • 2012.09.58:  B. Richard Page, Aaron D. Rubin, Studies in Classical Linguistics in Honor of Philip Baldi. Amsterdam studies in classical philology, 17.
  • 2012.09.57:  Andrew Robinson, Cracking the Egyptian Code: the Revolutionary Life of Jean-François Champollion.
  • 2012.09.56:  Tomasz Mojsik, Between Tradition and Innovation: Genealogy, Names and the Number of the Muses. Akme. Studia historica, 9.
  • 2012.09.55:  Evan Hayes, Stephen Nimis, Lucian’s The Ass: an Intermediate Greek Reader. Greek text with running vocabulary and commentary.
  • 2012.09.54:  Keith Bradley, Apuleius and Antonine Rome: Historical Essays. Phoenix supplementary volumes, 50.
  • 2012.09.53:  Jürgen Franssen, Votiv und Repräsentation: statuarische Weihungen archaischer Zeit aus Samos und Attika. Archäologie und Geschichte, Bd 13.
  • 2012.09.52:  Emma Stafford, Herakles. Gods and Heroes of the Ancient World.
  • 2012.09.51:  Stephen Hodkinson, Ian Macgregor Morris, Sparta in Modern Thought: Politics, History and Culture.
  • 2012.09.50:  Klaus Junker, Interpreting the Images of Greek Myths. An Introduction.
  • 2012.09.49:  Eleanor Cowan, Velleius Paterculus: Making History.
  • 2012.09.48:  Daniel H. Garrison, The Student’s Catullus. Fourth edition (first edition published 1989). Oklahoma series in classical culture, 5.
  • 2012.09.47:  Stephen Mitchell, David French, The Greek and Latin Inscriptions of Ankara (Ancyra), Vol. I: From Augustus to the end of the third century AD.