Archive for the 'links' Category

2018: a “monstrous” year?

I am about to start a course on ancient monsters. We will focus on mythological handbooks such as Hyginus’ Fabulae, Ps.-Apollodorus’ Bibliotheke, Antoninus Liberalis’ Metamorphoses, and Ps.-Eratosthenes’ Catasterisms, and the goal consists in translating and discussing passages where monsters are mentioned. I am very much looking forward to this class.

While preparing the course since last spring, I discovered with great pleasure that I was not the only one who was dealing with monsters this year!

First, I could follow, however from rather far away, the book launch of the Making Monsters Anthology edited by Emma Bridges and Djibril al-Ayad. You may find a summary of the event and more informations about the book at the blog of The Institute of Classical Studies.

Congratulation to all the contributors!


Secondly, I met last week, Lena van Beek, a colleague from the Medieval German Studies who is preparing her PhD on Giants in Medieval Literature. She also gave a seminar last semester on monsters! You may find a nice interview about her course on the website of the University of Hamburg.

Moreover, during her course, she prepared with her students a blog and I am very happy to present it here. All the contributions have been made by the students in small groups and represent the outcome of their seminar. Have a look at their work. It is worthwhile!

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find them

Capture d_écran 2018-10-07 à 23.35.20

Congratulation also to all of them!


Cicero at Open Book Publishers

Having given a talk on ancient commentaries this summer, and remembering a conference on ancient commentaries a few years ago, during which one talk compared ancient commentaries and modern ones, I am happy to share a few thoughts on a recently published work. It is Ingo Gildenhard’s, Cicero, Philippic 2, 44-50, 78-92, 100-119. Latin Text, Study Aids with Vocabulary and Commentary. This work is much more than a commentary, as it is lined out as a textbook and provides a whole range of additional information one would perhaps not expect in a commentary.

The book falls actually in two parts: in a first part, we have the Latin text, with three rubrics of questions (Study Questions, Stylistic Appreciation, Discussion Points). It also provides a list of vocabulary as useful help for the translation of the original. The second part is dedicated to the commentary of each of the sections of Phillippic 2 that the author included in his work and he discusses, among many other points, the questions listed in the first part.

Even though the book is targeting UK readers (with the Oxford Cambridge and RSA (OCR) As/A Level specifications as its primary focus), it may certainly also be useful outside the UK. As suggested by the author, and especially when considering a non-English speaking educational environment, I could very well imagine that the book could still be inspiring, in particular for teachers (secondary teachers and beyond). Moreover, the work is published open access and can be read for free as a digital edition.

Therefore have a look at it!



Finally, this is not the only work Ingo Gildenhard published this way. Under the rubric Classics Textbooks at Open Book Publisher you can find a whole list of works, most of them by Ingo Gildenhard.

Having fun with Demetrios…

As first short note, after my holidays, I just would like to draw attention to Pour l’amour du grec, another blog, from which you may learn, among other interesting things, how reading the highly scholarly work of Demetrios of Scepsis may still provide some everyday knowledge for those fond of travelling to the Greek seashore…

Il a mangé un oursin entier


Interesting way of dealing with fragments

I just received an announcement about a British Academy Network entitled “The Art of Fragments”. I copy the description here. The person in charge is Dr Laura Swift from the Open University in London. Looks interesting…


Thanks to the generous support of the British Academy, we are delighted to announce the launch of a new collaborative network bringing together academics and creative practitioners around the theme of ‘fragments’. We aim to use the form of the fragment, and the concept of fragmentation, as a springboard for creative opportunities. The network will support and showcase recent or ongoing projects where academics have worked in partnership with artists, and will provide a forum to discuss the challenges and opportunities for this type of collaborative work.

This is the launch event for the network, and its aim is to lay groundwork for discussions or partnerships that will continue over the next year. It will focus on themes of general interest, including:

– Why are fragments artistically inspiring?

– Finding the right partner

– Managing the relationship with project partners

– The funding landscape

– Organisations which support or facilitate collaborative work

Attendance is free, but places are limited so booking is essential.

We particularly welcome involvement from creatives of all types and from early career academics (defined by the British Academy for this scheme as those within 10 years of the award of their doctorate) who are interested in collaborating with the creative sector and/or in the creative potential of fragments.

To learn more or book your place, see here:

If you are unable to attend the launch event, but would like to stay  informed about the network and any activities over the next year, please contact me (


I am looking forward to hearing more from this Network. Unfortunately I am no longer within the timespan of 10 years after my PhD.

The History of Humanity

It is now the second time I hear from this huge project of the UNESCO. The first time it was at the GISFOH Sympsion in Potsdam last September. Now, being at the New Europe College in Romania, I attended another paper on this project. It was given by Bogdan C. Iacob, researcher from the project: Turning Global: Socialist Experts during the Cold War (1960s-1980s).

It started in 1947, just after the WW II and had two phases: it was first a History of Mankind and then became a History of Humanity. Both presentations underlined the difficulties the project encountered and the many controversies it fostered as the project struggled to get a global perspective, by taking account of all kind of new players.

At the GISFOH in Potsdam the focus was on the South and the paper presented the rise of Africa in the international context and its claim to have the right to tell its own history.  Last week at the weekly NEC-seminars we learned about how the Balkans got their way back into History.

It is an amazingly large project, with each volume having grown to over 1000 pages, but nonetheless, with all the debates and disagreements among the participants, it reached a conclusion in 2009 and the volume are now available:

  • Volume I: Prehistory and the beginnings of civilizations
  • Volume II: From the Third Millennium to the Seventh Century B.C. 
  • Volume III: From the Seventh Century B.C. to the Seventh Century A.D.
  • Volume IV: From the Seventh to the Sixteenth Century
  • Volume V: From the Sixteenth to the Eighteenth Century
  • Volume VI: The Nineteenth Century
  • Volume VII: The Twentieth Century

Some of them are freely available online and further information can be found on two different websites:
History of Humanity
Learning to Live Together

Of course I had a quick look at volume III, which contains the timespan under which the field of Classics falls! A surprising large number of French Classics scholars took part in the undertaking….

Exploring “The Ancient Greek Hero in 24 Hours”

At the Imouseion Project Workshop in Paris held at the beginning of June I learned about Greg Nagy’s project of an online course about the Homeric epics, the concept of Greek heroes and how the Greeks themselves dealt with it. The project has been launched in March and students can join until July 2013. See here for a general overview of its aims and content.

I just enrolled today and browsed through the first lesson. The choice of the first texts are particularly well fitting and the videos accompanying them give the necessary insights to understand their depth or to compare them with more modern experiences.

The whole course will be taught by a group of scholars including, besides Greg Nagy, also Lenny Muellner, Kevin McGrath, Alex Forte, Claudia Filos, Natasha Bershadsky, Glynnis Fawkes and Sean Signore. All are either teaching or studying at several US-universities. For each lesson, or hour, several texts are given. They are explained and discussed and the sessions ends with two sections of questions, one more about facts and the second about the texts and their meanings.

There is also a discussion section and an information blog giving the latest news about the progress of the course. Finally one can also find a link to the e-book version of Greg Nagy’s latest book, The Ancient Greek Hero in 24 Hours, which is based on his teaching material assembled over more than 30 years for this topic.

I am looking forward to having time for looking into hour 2!

Digital Classicist Berlin

Last Tuesday the new Digital Classicist in Berlin started with an introductory presentation given by Dr Gabriel Bodard, one of the two co-organizisers of the Digital Classicist in London, a series of seminars which has been running since 2006.

As one of Gabriel Bodard’s main field of interest is Greek epigraphy (e.g. Current epigraphy), his talk was about the progresses and challenges Digital Humanities brings to epigraphy: “A View on Digital Classics Collaboration: from a cacophony of epigraphic databases to a citizens’ web of inscriptions”.

Among the many interesting topics, I would however like to mention one which is of particular significance for my own research projet on Demetrios of Scepsis. It is the presentation of Prof. Jenny Strauss Clay about the mapping of the Catalogue of the Ships. She has already show in a recent study ( Homer’s Trojan Theater) how combining the new tools of Digital Humanities and conventional scholarship enables scholars to provide amazing new approaches, especially for Homeric scholarship. She has created for instance a visual representation of the so-called battlefield books in the Iliad. One of the many interesting aspects of her results was, to my opinion, the fact that the representation could work without being linked to any kind of map or real landscape. I am looking therefore forward to hear more about her project.

Finally I would like to mention a second series of seminars inspired by the Digital Classicist in London. The Univeristy of Leipzig is organizing in parallel the 2012 Leipzig eHumanities Seminar . Their programme has serveral highlights too and completes the one of the Berlin seminar in a most interesting way.

Chating at Classicsconfidential

A few days ago I had the opportunity to chat with Jessica Hughes one of the co-authors of Classicsconfidential. She and Elton Barker started a few years ago a series of interview about academics whose main field is Classics. By now they have gathered an impressing list of people who they were able to interview. Their blog is really worth having a look and it shades a refreshing light on the field of Classics.

3D Reconstruction of Troy

The University of Cincinnati hosts an interesting site on Troy.


It has been created in collaboration with the Troja-Projekt at the University of Tübingen and the CERHAS of the University of Cincinnati. You find there a wealth of material on the current state of research about Troy, with historical timelines, information about the Trojan myths and tables explaining the structure of the Iliad within the Trojan cycle.
Among the many maps you find there, you may also come across some 3D reconstructions. They represent either views on parts of the city or show the aspect the city may have had during the different periods in short films.

Venue at the CHS: The Future of the Classics

Today the CHS hosted the meeting: The Future of the Classics: A Discussion of the State of the Art. The speakers were:

Don Lavigne, Texas Tech, “Introduction: Classics as Cost Center?”
Liz Gephardt, Williamsburg Middle School, “Classics in American Schools”
Nikolaos Papazarkadas, Berkeley, “Classics in Greece”
Barbara Graziosi, Durham, “Classics in Italy and Britain”
Norman Sandridge, Howard, “Classics and ‘Academic Renewal'”
Johannes Haubold, Durham, “Classics and Comparative Studies”
Allen Romano, Florida State, “Classics and Digital Humanaties”

You may find more information about it on the CHS fellowship research blog.

The meeting was broadcast on the web and a chat interface was made available:

So I could attend the meeting and follow the presentations as well as the discussion afterwards. Of particular interest I found the fact that the speakers and participants not only thought about the future of Classics and the way it will be presented by its members, but also about the way the students of Classics perceive their own studies.