Graduate Student Conference 2019

Agency through the Ancients: Reception as Empowerment

Keynote speaker: Dr. Emily Allen-Hornblower, Rutgers University, and Marquis “I AM” McCray
Classical Studies Graduate Student Conference, November 9, 2019
Please arrive at STH 325 for check-in and breakfast.
Boston University, Boston, MA USA

Register here by Wednesday, October 23rd at 5pm.

This year, the conference will examine how classical literature (broadly defined) is able to impart a profound sense of agency to the disenfranchised, especially in times of turmoil or persecution. Although we acknowledge that many nationalists, over the centuries and into the present day, have invoked the classics in order to advance their exclusionary agenda, we  hope to demonstrate that the classics have the potential to heal, unite, and empower the marginalized. Therefore, this conference will explore the myriad ways in which those who have traditionally remained voiceless have discovered a safe harbor and a sense of solidarity through the literature of ancient Greece, Rome, Egypt, Babylon, etc. Special attention will be given to engagement with the ancient world by groups which have been historically underrepresented or outright excluded. 

9:00-9:45: Registration open/breakfast spread (STH 325)

9:45-10: Opening Remarks (STH B19)

10:00-11:30: Panel 1 – Surviving Trauma (STH B19)

  • Paper 1  – Alice Rae, University of Edinburgh – “Was it so hard, Achilles?” joining us via Skype
  • Paper 2  – Giacomo Loi, Johns Hopkins University – “The Unexpected Side: Making Sense of the Holocaust through Classical Mythology in Modern Hebrew Literature”
  • Paper 3  – Emma Schneider, Texas Tech University: “A Present Day Aeneas: Using Stories to Build Community with Immigrants and Refugees”

11:30-12:30: Lunch (STH 325)

12:30-2:00: Panel 2 – Women’s Voices and Agency (STH B19)

  • Paper 4  – Miriam Kamil, Harvard University: “Whose Sappho?: How Subversive Receptions of Sappho Transformed the Academy”
  • Paper 5  – Seren Nolan, Durham University – “Radical Matronae: The Roman Matrona as (proto-)feminist icon”
  • Paper 6  – Amanda Kubic, University of Michigan – “Cripping Venus: How the Creative Classical Receptions of Mary Duffy and Kinetic Light Disable Western Beauty Myths”

2:00-2:30: Break

2:30-4:00: Keynote: Dr. Emily Allen-Hornblower, Rutgers University, and Mr. Marquis ‘I AM’ McCray, “Rediscovering our Humanity: Reading the Classics Behind Bars” (STH B19)

4:00-5:00: Reception (STH 325)