Departmental Colloquium

The Penn Classical Studies Colloquium meets every Thursday when classes are in session at 4:30 in Cohen 402. The Colloquium features speakers from the department, the university, and the area, as well as from many other national and international institutions. Attendance is open to the public. The Colloquium is preceded by a coffee hour in Cohen 250 at 4:00.

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Upcoming Colloquia

STEPHEN KIDD, BROWN
Thursday, October 2, 2014
Location: Cohen Hall, Room 402

Aristotle twice refutes the apparently prevalent position that the best life consists of "play" (paidia) -- once in the Politics and once in the Nicomachean Ethics.  But who is he responding to with these refutations and why does he degrade play in favor of his preferred term "leisure"?  These are some of the problems this paper will confront.

IRAD MALKIN, TEL AVIV UNIVERSITY
Tuesday, October 7, 2014
Location: Cohen Hall, Room 402

By 500 BCE the coasts of the Mediterranean and Black Sea were dotted with Greek poleis sharing in a Greek civilization. Many are known to be "colonies" of various mother cities, a kind of endless chain: Sparta, a "colony of the Dorians" (Pindar; Dark Age?); Thera, a colony of Sparta (late Dark Age?); Cyrene, a colony of Thera (631 BCE?). The conventional image of a founder (oikist) leading an apoikia with Delphic charter in hand and replicating the mother city is re-examined here.

CHRIS CELENZA, HOPKINS
Thursday, October 16, 2014
Location: Cohen Hall, Room 402

Running throughout fifteenth-century Italian intellectual life was a debate: what was the nature of that Latin language?  Was it an "artificial" language -- one with its own, notionally permanent rules?  Or was it a "natural" language, one once spoken in the home?  This talk will highlight what was at stake in this debate, how it fueled and was fueled by fifteenth-century thinkers' views about history, and how, at least in one respect, it provides an interpretive key for italian Renaissance intellectual life.

DAVID M. PRITCHARD, UNIVERSITY OF QUEENSLAND, AUSTRALIA
Thursday, October 23, 2014
Location: Cohen Hall, Room 402

This lecture addresses the neglected problem of elite sport in classical Athens. Democracy may have opened up politics to every citizen but it had no impact on sporting participation. The city’s sportsmen continued to be drawn from the elite. Thus it comes as a surprise that nonelite citizens judged sport to be a very good thing and created an unrivalled program of local sporting festivals on which they spent a staggering sum.

PETER BING and REGINA HÖSCHELE
Thursday, October 30, 2014
Location: Cohen Hall, Room 402
AMANDA WILCOX, WILLIAMS COLLEGE
Thursday, November 6, 2014
Location: Cohen Hall, Room 402
ARI BRYEN, UWV
Thursday, November 13, 2014

This presentation will introduce my new project on legal culture in the world of the Roman provinces, and suggest that (a) there emerged a new interest in law in the first three centuries AD, revolving in particular on how to think about the scope of legal authority, and (b) this interest marked the emergence of a new form of provincial politics, which called into question the nature of the state itself. My presentation will try to reconstruct this process, and argue that it has stakes for how we understand political culture in the Roman world more generally.

JAMIE ROMM, BARD
Thursday, November 20, 2014
DAVID ELMER, HARVARD
Thursday, December 4, 2014