Welcome to Patricia Rosenmeyer

The Department of Classics is delighted to welcome Patricia Rosenmeyer as our new Paddison Professor of Classics.  Professor Rosenmeyer received her PhD from Princeton in 1987 and after teaching at Michigan and Yale joined the faculty of the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where she has been since 1997.  She is a specialist in Greek poetry, especially archaic lyric and Hellenistic epigram, but her interests are strikingly wide-ranging.  Especially notable among her many publications are the groundbreaking books The Poetics of Imitation: Anacreon and the Anacreontic Tradition (1992) and Ancient Epistolary Fictions: the Letter in Greek Literature (2001).  Her most recent book, The Language of Ruins: Greek and Latin Inscriptions on the Memnon Colossus, will be published by Oxford University Press later this year.  For more about Professor Rosenmeyer, see her departmental web page.  We are excited that she is joining the Carolina Classics community!

Congratulations to our PhDs!

Congratulations to our 2017 PhDs for the successful defenses of their dissertations and for a successful season in a very tough job market.

Elizabeth Artemis Clark, ‘The Chronicle of Novalese: Translation, Text, and Literary Analysis’; Liz continues as a full-time teacher at Lakewood Montessori Middle School in Durham, after a number of years at Cedar Ridge High School in Hillsborough

Daniel Schindler, ‘Late Roman and Byzantine Galilee: A Provincial Case Study from the Perspective of the Imported and Common Pottery’; Daniel has accepted a position as Adjunct Instructor at Elon University

Tedd Wimperis, ‘Cultural Memory and Constructed Ethnicity in Vergil’s Aeneid‘; Tedd has likewise accepted a position as Adjunct Instructor at Elon University

Our other recent PhDs have also fared well:

Rex Crews (2016) continues as Adjunct Instructor at Duke University
Robyn LeBlanc (2016) continues as Lecturer at UNC Greensboro
Pablo Molina (2016) continues as a full-time teacher at the Louisiana School of Math, Science, and the Arts
Zack Rider (2016) has accepted a position as Visiting Instructor at the University of South Carolina
Katie DeBoer Simons (2016) continues as Visiting Assistant Professor at Indiana University
Erika Weiberg (2016) continues as tenure-track Assistant Professor at Florida State University
John Esposito (2015) has accepted a position as Lecturer at UNC Greensboro
Rebecca Worsham (2015) continues as Visiting Assistant Professor at Smith College
Serena Witzke (2014) has accepted a one-year position as Visiting Assistant Professor at Wesleyan University

Congratulations to them all!  For more information about the careers of our PhDs and MAs, see here, and for a full list of all PhD dissertations and MA theses, see here.


UNC Alumna Becomes Right-Wing Target

Sarah Bond, a 2011 UNC PhD in Ancient History and a familiar figure in Murphey Hall, has achieved a growing reputation in the field of digital humanities, with a popular blog and over 10,000 followers on Twitter (@SaraEBond).  Sarah, currently an Assistant Professor of Classics at the University of Iowa, recently published a series of online pieces in which she connects the largely modern convention of presenting ancient Greek and Roman statuary as pure white with the appropriation of such imagery by white supremacist groups and with the lack of diversity in the field of Classics.  First came a blog post for Forbes, then a post on her personal blog, and lastly on the popular website Hyperallergic, with reflections on why this question is important for the modern study of Classics.  Sarah meant her pieces to be thought-provoking, but unfortunately they have provoked more than thought: she has become the object of personal abuse and even death threats, as described by these stories in ArtForum and the Chronicle of Higher Education. As another article in the Chronicle documents, Sarah’s experience is unfortunately part of a larger national trend that threatens the open exchange of ideas on which all good teaching and research depends.  Our colleague Jodi Magness, the current president of the Archaeological Institute of America, has issued a public statement reiterating that “the AIA is equally committed to fostering an atmosphere of peaceful and respectful dialogue among archaeologists and the public, in all forums and media” (see her full statement here).  Likewise, S. Georgia Nugent, the President of the Society for Classical Studies, has stated that “heated discussion and debate are desirable in scholarly discourse; personal abuse and violent threats have no place” (see her full statement here).  The Department of Classics is proud to register its support for Sarah and for the principles of free scholarly inquiry and debate.

Two Archaeology Graduate Students Win Summer Funding Awards

Hilker summer award

Hilker (left) acting as a trench supervisor at the Azoria excavation on Crete

Sarah Hilker has received the Janice and Herbert Benario Award from the Classical Association of the Middle West and South.  She will use the award to participate in the Postgraduate Course in Linear B and Mycenaean Greek at the British School of Archaeology at Athens this summer 2017.  Sarah’s dissertation project is a study of Mycenaean houses, both domestic contexts and settlement structures, focusing on residential space as a form of cultural production from the 14th to 12th centuries B.C.  Her work models Mycenaean residential space across palatial and non-palatial territories; and across temporal or historical divisions (such as Late Helladic IIIB to IIIC) that have informed interpretations of settlement histories derived from Linear-B topography.


Tardio in Renieblas, Spain in 2015

Katie Tardio was awarded the Dienje Kenyon Memorial Fellowship which will provide support for her travel to Spain so that she may continue to participate in the excavation and study of faunal material at Renieblas, Spain which is directed by Alicia Jiménez Díez and Jesús Bermejo Tirado since 2015 (read more about the Duke Univeristy project here).  This excavation project seeks to better understand the origins of the Roman Empire and mechanisms of early colonization by studying the first Roman settlements outside of Italy, specifically military camps in Iberia (modern Spain) and the local settlements surrounding them.  The goal of this project is to define the character of the Roman military diet in Spain, and the impact of Roman colonization on local animal economies including animal husbandry, trade networks, and food preferences.

UNC Senior Perla Azucena Castillejos receives SCS Minority Scholarship in Classics

Perla Castillejos

Perla at the Cliffs of Moher, Ireland (Summer 2016)

Senior Classics student Perla Azucena Castillejos has been awarded a minority scholarship for undergraduate students from the Society for Classical Studies.  The scholarship aims to help students further their preparation in classics or classical archaeology during the summer with programs not available during the academic year.  Perla shares her plans for this summer below:

“Since I was young, I have been interested in the ancient world and I thought that the only way to learn more about the topic was through the study of history.  After transferring to Carolina in the fall of 2015 as a junior, I discovered that there was an entire department dedicated to the study of ancient Rome and Greece, and that I could put a name to the field which I was most fascinated with: Classics.  I took as many courses as I could, but as a transfer student I only had a limited amount of time to do so.  At the beginning of my senior year I decided that I wanted to continue with my studies at the graduate level, but I did not yet have the required amount of experience in the ancient languages.  I will use the Minority Scholarship to sign up for an intensive Greek course over the summer which will provide the experience I need to apply to a post-baccalaureate program where I will improve my Latin and Greek.”

Perla is a History major with a minors in Archaeology and Classical Humanities.  Past winners of the SCS minority scholarship have attended summer language institutes and have participated in archaeological digs and field schools.  You can learn more about the scholarship and others offered by the SCS here.


Three Classics Instructors Named Recipients of 2017 UNC Teaching Awards


(From left) Will Begley, Jennifer Gates-Foster, and William Race

Of the twenty-four faculty members and teaching assistants selected for University teaching awards this spring, three find their home in the Department of Classics.  Professor Jennifer Gates-Foster received a Tanner Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching; Professor-emeritus William Race won a J. Carlyle Sitterson Award for Teaching First-Year Students; and graduate student Will Begley was awarded a Tanner Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching by a Graduate Teaching Assistant.

Each year, the University Committee on Teaching Awards encourages students to nominate faculty and graduate teaching assistants.  The committee chooses recipients who “promote the value of undergraduate teaching by example, demonstrate concern for students through interaction and approachability inside and outside the classroom, create meaningful learning experiences and maintain high expectations of their students.”  For more about the awards see here.

All of the recipients were recognized at halftime of the men’s basketball game against Pittsburgh on January 31, 2017.  They will also hosted be by Chancellor Carol L. Folt at a banquet in April.

teaching awards bball

William Race (center), Will Begley (seven from right), and Jennifer Gates-Foster (four from right) are recognized along with other teaching award recipients on January 31.

Jennifer Gates-Foster is an assistant professor of Classical Archaeology and has been at Carolina since 2013.  Her primary research interests are in the art and archaeology of the Near East and Egypt in the Hellenistic and Roman periods.

Professor-emeritus William Race was the George L. Paddison Professor of Classics from 1996 until his retirement in 2016.  His teaching and research interests include Greek and Latin poetry, rhetoric, and the Classical tradition.

Will Begley is a fifth-year philology graduate student and is also the Classics Department’s Greek Paddison Fellow mentored by William Race.  Will has taught elementary and intermediate Latin during his time at Carolina.

Mary Sturgeon Receives Prestigious ASCSA Award

mcs-pic-col3Congratulations to Mary Sturgeon, Professor Emerita, Department of Art, affiliated faculty in Classics and the Curriculum of Archaeology, on being named one of 2017’s two recipients of the Aristeia Award for Distinguished Almuni/ae of the American School of Classical Studies at Athens.  The award honors exceptional service to the School, especially by those who have done the most over the years in support of its mission in teaching, research, archaeological exploration, and/or publication.  The chair of the Award Committee describes Mary as someone who has made outstanding contributions not just in some, but in all these areas!

Founded in 1881, the ASCSA is one of the best resources in Greece for American scholars of ancient and post-classical studies in Greek language, literature, history, archaeology, philosophy, and art. (See ascsa.edu.gr.)  It offers a variety of programs for graduate students, who receive comprehensive training through visits to archaeological sties and museums and attend seminars led by resident and visiting scholars.

Professor Sturgeon was chair of ASCSA’s 300-member Managing Committee from 2007 to 2012, with a budget of $10 million.  Committee members are tasked with overseeing two important libraries, publications, personnel, excavations and surveys, technology, summer schools, and a scientific lab, as well as handling admissions and fellowships.  She acted as liaison to the two important excavations at the Athenian Agora and Corinth and to the Board of Trustees, while finding time (somehow!) to be involved in development.

Professor Sturgeon will receive the award in Toronto next January at the annual joint meeting of the Archaeological Institute of America and the Society for Classical Studies. We congratulate her on her outstanding achievement!

2016 Herington Competition Winners

Congratulations to the winners of the 2016 Annual Herington Competition!

Jessica Carter – Herington Prize in Greek
Evan Colby – Herington Prize in Latin

The Herington Greek and Latin Poetry Prizes, established in 1999 by Maynard and Florence Mack in memory of John Herington, are awarded for the best performance of assigned passages of Greek and Latin poetry.  There are two prizes of $250 each, one in Greek and one in Latin.  The competition, open to all undergraduates taking Greek or Latin at UNC, takes place every year in the fall.

Cicek Beeby highlighted in Carolina Arts & Sciences Magazine

Cicek Beeby, graduate student in Classical Archaeology, is highlighted in the Fall 2016 edition of the Carolina Arts & Sciences Magazine.  The article, “A teacher digs deeper” can be found on the magazine’s website here.  The piece spotlights Cicek’s role as a trench supervisor on the Azoria Project in Crete, Greece, a  position she has held since 2012.

In January 2016, Cicek was named a winner of the Tanner Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching.  She is currently working on her dissertation titled “Spatial Narratives of Mortuary Landscapes in Early Iron Age Greece: A Network Approach.”