Robert Babcock

Alumni Distinguished Professor

“My activities for the year included a visit to Dumbarton Oaks, Washington D.C.,  in June to lead a masterclass on editing and translating Hrotsvitha’s works….as I write this I am on my way to Brussels, where I’ll spend the five weeks studying manuscripts in the Royal Library, and enjoying Belgian chocolates and Trappist beers in the evenings.”

My activities for the year included a visit to Dumbarton Oaks, Washington D.C.,  in June to lead a masterclass on editing and translating Hrotsvitha’s works. I also lectured at Ohio State University on Latin Paleography in September, and in January the article written by my LATN 222 (Cicero) class from spring 2017 appeared in Codices manuscripti. This spring my Medieval Latin class (LATN 205) had a Graduate Research Assistant, India Watkins, who worked with the students to perform a medieval play, Hrotsvitha’s Callimachus. Written by a tenth-century nun, the comedy is set in first-century Ephesus, and tells the story of a love-sick young man who falls in love with a married woman. The play includes necrophilia, snakes, and zombies, but ends happily, at least for most of the characters. The students researched ancient and medieval stage settings, costumes, music, and performance practices, and used that research to inform how they produced and performed the play.

As I write this I am on my way to Brussels, where I’ll spend the five weeks studying manuscripts in the Royal Library, and enjoying Belgian chocolates and Trappist beers in the evenings.

Emily Baragwanath

Associate Professor

Highlights of the past year included overseas trips to Crete for a terrific conference on Anabases in Antiquity and Beyond and to Norway for a doctoral defense…and on that note I should observe that on the home front, the most delightful distractions continue to be Julia (now 8) and Rose (nearly 3).

EB at UCLA

Highlights of the past year included overseas trips to Crete for a terrific conference on Anabases in Antiquity and Beyond (my paper considered ‘Ethnicity, Culture, Friendship: Depicting Greeks and Foreigners through rhetoric in Anabasis 5’) and to Norway for a doctoral defense (where as the ‘First Opponent’ I was given an hour publicly to grill the learned candidate)

The adaptation of Medea performed by EB’s Greek Tragedy students.

More locally I represented the Greek historians at a stimulating Borghesi-Mellon workshop at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, organized by Leonora Neville and UNC alum Jeff Beneker, exploring how far, and simply how, Byzantine historiography engaged with its ancient Greek forerunner. I also spoke about my Xenophon project (a developing chapter on intertextuality and female agency in Xenophon’s historiographical works) at the Stanford Historiography Jam and at UCLA, where I also participated in a Herodotus grad seminar. 

In the Fall I taught grad Thucydides, which culminated in a splendid Thucydides Gala, at which Prof. Bob Connor and the students all presented their work. My undergrad Greek Tragedy course culminated with the students’ performance of scenes of Euripides’ Bacchae and of a modern adaptation of Medea (with Medea as pharmacist!) 

Julia and Rose at Glenwood Elementary (where Julia loves being a student in the dual language Mandarin immersion program)

In the Spring I taught the Junior Seminar on Ancient Delphi, and my First Year Seminar, Writing the Past, which has us reading Herodotus, Thucydides, Polybius against the backdrop of modern renditions of the past and of war. The course has an extra urgency in the current war against misinformation, fake news, and alternative facts (and this indeed was the topic I proposed for a Robertson Scholars dinnertime discussion some students in the class invited me to lead)Publications that have seen the light of day this academic year include ‘Myth and History Entwined: Female Influence and Male Usurpation in Herodotus’ Histories in Y.S. Chen, J. Baines, H. van der Blom, and T. Rood (eds.), Historical Consciousness and the Use of the Past in the Ancient World (Sheffield), 293-310; ‘Heroes and Homemakers in Xenophon’ in J. Blum and T. Biggs (eds.), The Epic Journey in Greek and Roman Literature (Cambridge), 108-129; and Emotions, Perceptions, Visual Images: Conceptualizing the Past in Xenophon’s Hellenica in S. Fink and R. Rollinger (eds.)Conceptualizing Past, Present and Future, Melammu Symposia 9 (Münster), 33-59. 

Wrapping up the year, I was privileged to deliver the propemptic remarks at our Classics department graduation ceremony, a most special day which happily always coincides with Mothers’ Day. And on that note I should observe that on the home front, the most delightful distractions continue to be Julia (now 8) and Rose (nearly 3). 

Janet Downie

Associate Professor

Highlights of this past academic year for me included a new graduate seminar on “The Greek Novel in its Imperial Context,” where the group especially benefited from the contributions of some guest interlocutors…I am now looking forward to not just a summer but a whole six months of research and writing at the University of Regensburg, Germany.

Highlights of this past academic year for me included a new graduate seminar on “The Greek Novel in its Imperial Context,” where the group especially benefited from the contributions of some guest interlocutors: Dr. Regina Höschele on Philostratus EikonesDr. Markus Hafner on the Tabula of Cebes and Lucian’s On Salaried Posts, and Dr. Janet Spittler on the Apocryphal Acts of Andrew

I also enjoyed teaching Greek prose composition for the first time – thanks to a very positive and productive group of grad students (and one undergrad), who were game for anythingThe same goes for my large and enthusiastic first year Greek cohort! Research highlights included the second annual meeting of The Second Sophistic Colloquium – this time at Notre Dame University – and also a day-long colloquium on the Second Sophistic at UNC, organized and hosted primarily by Dr. Markus Hafner, whom we have been fortunate to have with us in the department this past year as a visiting scholar, supported by his research fellowship from the Humboldt Foundation. 

I am now looking forward to not just a summer but a whole six months of research and writing at the University of Regensburg, Germany, where I will work on my book project on The Imperial Landscapes of Asia Minor as a Fellow of the Institute for Advanced Study “Beyond Canon.” My first stop in Europe, though, will be the Celtic Conference in Classics in Coimbra, Portugal, where I and fellow TSSC colleagues have organized a panel on “The Politics of the Second Sophistic.” 

Al Duncan

Assistant Professor

“Pivoting from theatrical to scholarly production, I had a chapter on dramatic masks published in The Materialities of Greek Drama, edited by Mario Teló and Melissa Mueller (and we look forward to welcoming Melissa as a fellow of the National Humanities Center in Research Triangle Park next year)….however, the most substantial “publication” of 2018 was Dashiell Jarvis-Duncan, whom Lauren, Alexander and I welcomed to our family last July.”

This academic year kicked off with a conference on Greek humor in Louvain-la-Neuve, Belgium, where among several new introductions, I reconnected with host Pierre Destrée and my colleague at Kansas, Craig Jendza. I was also fortunate to travel to Lynchburg, VA, where I presented a paper at the Ancient Drama in Performance conference and caught an exemplary masked performance of Medea. Last but not least was a trip to the SCS Annual Meeting in San Diego, CA, where with Anna Uhlig (UC-Davis) I co-organized a thematic panel entitled, “Ancient Drama, New World,” which included our local colleague from Duke, Claire Catenaccio. This year I also concluded my appointment as departmental diversity liaison with some timely programming, including a middle-school outreach event (presented with Jermaine Bryant), graduate proseminars on diversity in teaching and research, and a public roundtable discussion on Classics and Diversity that highlighted unique challenges and opportunities Classics faces in our time. A tumultuous year for diversity in Chapel Hill came to a celebratory finish, first when Jermaine Bryant won the highly competitive (and well-deserved) UNC Diversity Prize and second when, hot on the heels of a favorable tenure and promotion decision, Jen Gates-Foster was named the department’s next diversity liaison.

As always, the lion’s share of my time was spent in the classroom and research. This year I took my ancient athletics course from an Honors seminar to a large-lecture format and (alongside TAs Matt Sherry and Jackson Miller) taught several dozen varsity athletes, including a handful of National Champions, in the process. In November, my Aristophanes class entered into friendly competition with Emily Baragwanath’s Greek tragedy seminar for final performances in the Forest Theater. That same venue would go on to host several productions this Spring mounted by students in my First Year Seminar, “Greek Drama from Page to Stage,” including scenes from Aeschylus’ Oresteia during Simon Goldhill’s memorable visit to Chapel Hill. Pivoting from theatrical to scholarly production, I had a chapter on dramatic masks published in The Materialities of Greek Drama, edited by Mario Teló and Melissa Mueller (and we look forward to welcoming Melissa as a fellow of the National Humanities Center in Research Triangle Park next year). I continued work on my book on ugliness while also tackling issues of representation and politics in recent receptions of Greek drama that will soon be appearing in digital publications. However, the most substantial “publication” of 2018 was Dashiell Jarvis-Duncan, whom Lauren, Alexander and I welcomed to our family last July.

Jennifer Gates-Foster

Associate Professor

“This year was an eventful one. My book, edited with Steve Sidebotham, on the archaeological surveys of the Eastern Desert in Egypt, was published in early 2018…. In Egypt, I continue my work with the European Research Council team on our ERC funded project “Desert Networks.” In addition to ongoing excavations in Egypt, we are holding a conference in Lyon, France in 2019.”

One of the ostraka from Bir Samut being studied in the field.

This year was an eventful one. My book, edited with Steve Sidebotham, on the archaeological surveys of the Eastern Desert in Egypt, was published in early 2018. This volume brings together several decades of important work documenting and analyzing the remains associated with Graeco-Roman roads, traveler’s stations and fortifications in the mineral-rich region between the Upper Nile Valley and the Red Sea. Outside my editorial contributions to the volume, it includes my lengthy study of the Ptolemaic and Roman pottery from the region. This spring also marked my transition to the rank of Associate Professor at Carolina.

The ERC survey team at work in the Eastern Desert of Egypt.

 

Vessel from Omrit being studied and restored.

In addition to these big developments, I also continued my work at Horvat Omrit, where we are bringing to a close five years of excavation at this important Roman archaeological site in northern Israel. In 2018, specialists worked to complete their study of the coins and wall paintings from the site, which include a Nilotic landscape discovered in 2017. In summer 2019, I and a larger team of specialists returned to the site to conclude study of the pottery, metal objects, Islamic artifacts and the lamps, which are being published by UNC graduate student Katelin McCullough.

In Egypt, I continue my work with the European Research Council team on our ERC funded project “Desert Networks.” In addition to ongoing excavations in Egypt, we are holding a conference in Lyon, France in 2019 and working on our first book to come out of the project on the Ptolemaic fortification at Bir Samut, a third century BCE foundation under Ptolemy III. In the coming year, we will host a postdoctoral scholar associated with this project and continue to deepen the ties between the Maison de l’Orient et de la Méditerranée in Lyon and UNC Chapel Hill.

Donald Haggis

 Nicholas A. Cassas Term Professor of Greek Studies

“In the summer of 2018, we completed 16 years of fieldwork at the Archaic site of Azoria in eastern Crete…an important part of our public outreach and programming efforts at Azoria was to establish a stable web-based interactive protocol that would function as an online guidebook. While still under development, the Azoria “story map” is now online, providing visitors to the site an accessible and interactive guidebook.”

In the summer of 2018, we completed 16 years of fieldwork at the Archaic site of Azoria in eastern Crete. Work in progress includes preliminary reports on excavations conducted in 2013-2017, as well as the final publication of Harriet Boyd’s excavations at the site in 1900, which has expanded into an in-depth study of two rural towers of 3rd to early 2nd century B.C. date, their associated assemblages, as well as the archaeological and historical contexts of Hellenistic occupation at the site. Summer of 2018 was also the second season of a new project of site preservation and public programming, the Azoria Project Field Conservation and Public Outreach Program, which is funded by grants from the Stavros Niarchos Foundation. One part of this effort has been the redesign of the Azoria Project web page (http://azoria.unc.edu/) which was conducted and funded by the Department of Classics.

An important part of our public outreach and programming efforts at Azoria was to establish a stable web-based interactive protocol that would function as an on-line guidebook to the archaeological site. In collaboration with the staff archaeologists of the Research Laboratories of Archaeology at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill we developed a working prototype using an open-access software created by Northwestern University. While still under development, the Azoria “story map” is now on-line, providing visitors to the site an accessible and interactive guidebook to the principal buildings and archaeological contexts. The platform, called, Azoria: A Walking Tour of the Site, will eventually be expanded to include all of the ancient buildings and monuments, with detailed information on chronology, function, and significance.

Among other projects, I published an article on the relationship between theory and the practice of fieldwork in classical archaeology (“In Defense of a Contextual Classical Archaeology,” Journal of Mediterranean Archaeology 31 (2018) 101-119); a survey of the Kavousi and Mirabello regions from Late Minoan III to the Archaic period for the new Blackwell Companion to the Ancient World ( I.S. Lemos and A. Kotsonas, eds., A Companion to the Archaeology of Early Greece and the Mediterranean (Chichester: Wiley-Blackwell 2019) 1067-1087); and a paper, “Spatial Contiguities and Stratigraphic Discontinuities as Transtemporal Engagement with the Past,” a lecture to be presented in Athens in June at the annual meeting of Aegeus Society for Aegean Prehistory, in celebration of the Society’s tenth anniversary.

Sharon James

Professor

“I served as interim chair for Women’s and Gender Studies in the fall semester, and was therefore much occupied by administrative duties, including numerous meetings with deans. With Alison Keith (University of Toronto) and Laurel Fulkerson (Florida State University), I am a co-founder of the International Ovidian Society (http://ovidiansociety.org/), which is now an Affiliated Group of the SCS.”

It has been an unusual year for me: I served as interim chair for Women’s and Gender Studies in the fall semester, and was therefore much occupied by administrative duties, including numerous meetings with deans.  Quite a learning experience!  This spring I’ve been on leave, working both on Propertius and on trying to get my giant manuscript (women in New Comedy) ready to send to my editor at last.  In April I spent time in London and Manchester, where I joined a one-day seminar on women in antiquity at the University.  It was quite something to experience Brexit-anxiety in person.  Sighs of relief could be heard everywhere when the extension was announced.

Overall, this year has been busy and productive: my article on the life course of the Roman courtesan appeared in print; I wrote the entry on rape for the new OCD On-line.  Forthcoming are articles on women and trauma in New Comedy; Propertius; Plautus and the marriage plot; various entries for the Oxford Encyclopedia of Greek Comedy.  Other projects continue in progress.  I enjoyed giving papers at CAAS and CAMWS-Southern Section in the fall.

With Alison Keith (University of Toronto) and Laurel Fulkerson (Florida State University), I am a co-founder of the International Ovidian Society (http://ovidiansociety.org/), which is now an Affiliated Group of the SCS.  (“Why should there be a Vergilian Society and not an Ovidian Society?” was our founding question.)  We are still getting ourselves organized enough to manage such things as dues, finances, and bank accounts.  I co-organized our first panel at the San Diego conference and have co-organized the panel for next January’s conference (“What’s New in Ovidian Studies), for which we received a sizable number of abstracts; it will be an extremely interesting session.  Our first business meeting was well-attended, lively, and productive.  The IOS sponsored panels at CAMWS and CANE, as well; its first official conference will be held in Pisa this June. The program can be found under Events on the website.  Formal incorporation of the Society is underway, and we have commissioned a lovely logo, as well.  The goal of the IOS is to promote Ovidian studies everywhere and particularly to support the work of younger classicists.  So we plan to reach out to Ovidianists in all kinds of fields—theater, art, modern languages, etc.—and we are actively seeking out and relying on students and scholars who have long careers ahead of them.  The positive, excited, dedicated response has been gratifying and remarkable, and we look forward to gaining more interest and more members.

Jim O’Hara

George L. Paddison Professor of Latin

I continue to work co-editing, with Randall Ganibanthe Focus-Hackett school commentary on Aeneid 7-12, written by a team of six, which I keep optimistically saying will be done soon, but this time I think it’s true My daughter Marika, who was three when I came to UNC, will be a senior here this coming year, and will be Executive Director of Production for the on-campus theatrical group “Pauper Players.”

Some things came out this year.  Two papers appeared in Festschrift volumes: “Evander’s love of gore and bloodshed in Aeneid 8,” in Pushing the Boundaries of Historia: Essays on Greek and Roman History and Culture, in honor of my teacher Blaise Nagy of Holy Cross, and “Genre, gender, and the etymology behind the phrase Lugentes campi at Aeneid 6.441,” in They Keep it All Hid: Augustan Poetry, its Antecedents and Reception, in honor of Richard Thomas.

A revised version of my 1997 chapter on “Virgil’s Style” (they make me spell it that way) will appear/has appeared at the end of May in a new version of The Cambridge Companion to Virgil

I continue to work co-editing, with Randall Ganibanthe Focus-Hackett school commentary on Aeneid 7-12, written by a team of six, which I keep optimistically saying will be done soon, but this time I think it’s true. It will include a more concise version (for more advanced students) of my 2017 standalone commentary on Aeneid 8 (aimed at intermediate students).  

I wrote two book reviews, of Casali’s Virgilio, Eneide 2. Introduzionetraduzione e commento (Pisa 2017), which appeared in Vergilius, and of Heyworth and Morwood’s A Commentary on Vergil, Aeneid 3 (Oxford 2017) which is forthcoming in Gnomon

I continue as president of the Vergilian Society until I hand things over to my successor Barbara Boyd after the 2020 SCS meeting. Hunter Gardner, UNC PhD 2005, is the new editor of our journal Vergilius.  In June of 2018 I gave a paper in Cuma, Italy, “Satire, Didactic, and new contexts for problems in Horace’s Ars Poetica,” in the Vergilian Society’s Symposium Cumanumwhich was on the topic rerum cognoscere causas: Learning in the Late Republic and the Augustan Age,” and was organized by UNC PhDs Ted Gellar-Goad and Chris Polt. The papers from the Symposium may be published in a volume of essays, and mine is related to my book project, Teaching, Pretending to Teach, and the Authority of the Speaker in Roman Didactic and Satire

In the Fall I taught a Carolina Public Humanities class on the Aeneidwith three two-hour lecture/discussions at Flyleaf Books; next year I’ll do Lucretius.  In the Spring I gave two talks in New England, “News or Entertainment? Teaching, Pretending to Teach, and the Authority of the Speaker in Roman Didactic and Satire,” at Wesleyan University (where I taught 1986-2001, and where UNC PhD Serena Witzke teaches now)and Fake News on Aeneas’ Shield? Possible Responses to Lying, Exaggeration, and Encomium in Vergil’s Aeneid 8,” at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst.  My daughter Marika, who was three when I came to UNC, will be a senior here this coming year, and will be Executive Director of Production for the on-campus theatrical group “Pauper Players.” 

James B. Rives

Kenan Eminent Professor of Classics and chair of the department

I began my update last year with a brief report on the house that I’m building with my architect husband John. Despite various delays and setbacks, however, we did in fact move in at the end of May.
I’ve had two papers published this year. One, a version of the paper that I presented at Harvard, appeared in an online open-access journal. The other appeared more traditionally in a special issue of a journal.

I began my update last year with a brief report on the house that I’m building with my architect husband John, which I ended with the confident statement that by the time of this year’s newsletter we would certainly be moved in.  Well, as anyone who’s ever been involved in a construction project knows, things never quite work out as expected! Despite various delays and setbacks, however, we did in fact move in at the end of May, and are now sorting through boxes of possessions that we haven’t seen for two years. After all this time of having ‘no fixed address’, we are definitely happy to have a home again!

There have been a few modest developments on the research front.  In November I gave a paper on Paul at the annual meeting of the Society of Biblical Literature in Denver.  I should stress that this was an invited presentation, because as a classicist I would never on my own initiative have had the gumption to talk about Paul in a room full of New Testament scholars!  But they were very gentle with me, so it wasn’t too traumatic an experience.  This spring I presented it as a Tea Talk here in the department, and I enjoyed the chance to share my current research with students and colleagues.  In March I was invited to present a paper at Harvard, and so had a short but pleasant visit there.  I outlined a way of using the concepts of orthopraxy and orthodoxy to model religious change in the Mediterranean world in the first four centuries CE, a model that I’ve been developing as a theoretical framework for my long-term project on animal sacrifice in the Roman empire.  I was afterwards asked some very tough questions, which I appreciated for prodding me to refine my ideas further.  Nevertheless, I was glad that the talk was followed by a very enjoyable dinner with a group of grad students.  Somewhat unusually, I’ve had two papers published this year.  One, a version of the paper that I presented at Harvard, appeared in an online open-access journal.  It was the first time that I had published anything in this format, and it was an eye-opening experience; no doubt a harbinger of the future!  The other, on animal sacrifice and euergetism in the Hellenistic and Roman polis, appeared more traditionally in a special issue of a journal.

In terms of teaching, I stuck closely this year to old favorites: my large lecture course on classical mythology in the fall, and Greek New Testament in the spring.  I enjoyed them both, although they were a study in contrasts.  The myth course has an enrollment of 160, with a separate Honors recitation section and a team of three graduate student TAs, on whom I relied in multiple ways.  Greek New Testament has an enrollment of 6, although what it lacked in quantity was made up by quality.  We worked through most of the Gospel of Mark, and along the way had introductions to lexicography and textual criticism.  One of the high points was having two of my PhD students receive their degrees this year: Patrick Dombrowski in December, with a dissertation on the development of the concept of magic in Rome, and John Beeby in May, with a dissertation on Etruscan identity in the first century BCE.  It was a rewarding experience working with both of them, and I was delighted to see them officially awarded their doctorates.

Patricia Rosenmeyer

George L. Paddison Professor of Classics

“I recently inherited the position of Placement Director from Sharon James; as Chair of our Visiting Speaker’s Committee, I had the pleasure of organizing an exciting group of speakers from the US and abroad…I look forward to presenting my research on the role of Hipparchia in the Cynic letter collection at an upcoming conference in the fall at Giessen University.”

This past fall I began my second year in Murphey Hall, and continue to be deeply grateful for my wonderful colleagues and talented students.  I recently inherited the position of Placement Director from Sharon James; our PhDs did well on the market this year, but I suspect it was mostly because of Sharon’s previous positive influence.  As Chair of our Visiting Speakers Committee, I had the pleasure of organizing an exciting group of speakers from the US and abroad.  In addition, I am thrilled to be developing an institutional partnership with Classics at the University of Tübingen; I hope to visit Tübingen myself in September, with the support of a College Strategic Partnership Award.

On the teaching side of things, I thoroughly enjoyed my two graduate Greek literature classes (“Hellenistic Poetry”; “Homer’s Iliad and its Reception”) and two undergraduate classes in translation (a first-year seminar on “Helen of Troy From Homer to Hollywood”; an Honors class on “Greek and Roman Love Poetry”).  In the latter two, I particularly liked engaging with undergraduates from diverse backgrounds and with varied intellectual interests, mostly outside the humanities.  In addition, I supervised a great Senior Honors Thesis by Alex Haggis, and watched with pride as my dissertation student, Brian McPhee, won a Rome Prize for 2019/20.

While the commuting life has diminished my eagerness to travel during term, I did leave town a few times.  I organized a panel for CAMWS-Southern Section in October in Winston-Salem on “Graphic Design: Text and Image in Ancient Inscription” with former students from UW-Madison; but our own graduate students also made a strong showing at the conference.  I also gave the Georges Lecture at Tulane University in March; my topic was “Conversations with a Colossus”, drawn from my recent book on The Language of Ruins:  Greek and Latin Inscriptions on the Memnon Colossus (Oxford, 2018).  I have a few articles forthcoming this year: “Anacreontics in America”, in L. Swift, ed., Blackwell Companion to Greek Lyric (2019); “Encrypted Inscriptions: A Paradoxical Praxis” in C. Noreña and N. Papazarkadas, eds., From Document To History: Epigraphic Insights into the Greco-Roman World (Leiden, 2019); and my first co-written piece, with Prof. G. Ragusa, University of São Paulo, Brazil: “A Delicate Bridegroom: Habrosyne in Sappho fr. 115V”, for CQ 69 (2019). I look forward to presenting my research on the role of Hipparchia in the Cynic letter collection at an upcoming conference in the fall at Giessen University on “Letters and Power: the Pseudonymous Letters”.

Hérica Valladares

Assistant Professor

“It is hard to believe that I have been at UNC for four years now. I continue to be amazed by the incredible group of individuals I work with here, especially my students who are a constant source of inspiration…One last bit of good news is that my book manuscript, Painting, Poetry and the Invention of Tenderness in the Early Roman Empire, has been contracted by Cambridge University Press and will be published in 2020.”

It is hard to believe that I have been at UNC for four years now. I continue to be amazed by the incredible group of individuals I work with here, especially my students who are a constant source of inspiration. In Fall 2018, the students in my Honors First Year Seminar (“Life in Ancient Pompeii”) produced an online catalogue of objects of daily life from the Roman imperial period currently housed in the Ackland Art Museum and Wilson Library (http://romanlifeandart.web.unc.edu/). This website was the result of a multipart research project and reflects several of the topics explored by the class over the course of the semester, ranging from the role of religion in everyday life to the form and meaning of Roman funerary commemorations, and also to more practical concerns, such as keeping one’s house warm and paying for groceries at the market. Not to be outdone, my more advanced students in “Roman Painting” (CLAR/ARTH 476) created a series of HP Reveal auras based on the illustrations from Le Anitichità di Ercolano Esposte (1757-1792) also at the Ackland. By developing a number of augmented reality experiences, which museum visitors could activate through their phones, students were able to provide more context for these alluring, yet little understood prints that constitute the first official printed reproductions of the archaeological discoveries from Herculaneum and Pompeii in the eighteenth century.

In the spring, I reprised my course on fashion, “Art and Fashion from Rome to Timbuktu,” which I co-teach with my colleague Vicki Rovine in Art and Art History. With support from both our departments, Vicki and I were very lucky to be able to bring Janet Stephens back to campus in late February for another fascinating lecture on reconstructing Roman hairstyles. As was the case in the previous year, Stephens’ lecture was very well attended. Students very much enjoyed the informal exchange of questions and ideas that took place while Stephens transformed Bryanna Lloyd’s hair into an impressive, high imperial tower of braids. I also felt immensely privileged to co-teach a graduate seminar with Mary Pardo (Art and Art History) on image and text from antiquity to the Renaissance. This was Mary’s last class before retiring from a long and distinguished career at UNC and I was happy to hear her declare that this had been her dream seminar. Graduate students from Classics, Classical Archaeology, History, and Art History signed up for this interdisciplinary, interdepartmental adventure and produced papers that were breathtakingly sophisticated.

PhD student Bryanna Lloyd following Janet Stephen’s lecture on reconstructing Roman hairstyles

I was delighted to return to the Villa Vergiliana in Cuma last October to participate in a symposium organized by Brenda Longfellow (University of Iowa) titled “Women on the Bay of Naples.” UNC Classics was strongly represented at this event. Three of our alumnae were among the presenters: Erica Zimmermann Damer (University of Richmond), Elizabeth Wolfram Thill (Indiana University – Purdue University Indianapolis), and Sarah Levin-Richardson (University of Washington). Is there an academic equivalent for “Go Heels”?

One last bit of good news is that I have just signed a contract with Cambridge University Press for my book manuscript, Painting, Poetry and the Invention of Tenderness in the Early Roman Empire, which will be published in 2020. I could not be happier. Let the fun of acquiring image permissions and indexing begin!