Christopher Roberts Lecture Series at Dickinson College
Each fall the Department of Classical Studies invites noted scholars to present a lecture containing at least one significant, original finding or thesis not previously presented in public, either in print or orally. This lecture is delivered on Saturday afternoon, to allow interested faculty, students and people from the area to attend. The topic is one of potential interest to teachers of classical studies at the college level. A concert follows.
A second lecture -- directed to a wider audience -- is delivered on the previous Friday afternoon. All three events are free and open to the public.
Inaugural Event - 1998
Christopher Pelling, Oxford University
September 25 & 26, 1998
"Caused, Scientific & Other: Hippocrates & Historians"
Respondent: Rosaria Munson, Swarthmore
2nd lecture: "Antony & Cleopatra: Legend, Literature & History"
Classical Studies presents the 16th Annual Christopher Roberts Lecture:
October 4 & 5, 2013
Loren J. Samons II is a Professor of Classical Studies at Boston University and an NEH Distinguished Teacher. He has written on both Greek and Roman History. He has edited The Cambridge Companion to the Age of Pericles, (Cambridge, 2007) and authored What’s Wrong With Democracy? From Athenian Practice to American Worship (California, 2004; paperback, 2007). Cambridge University Press will soon publish two biographies by Professor Samons, entitled, Pericles and the Conquest of History, and Kimon and the Creation of Classical Athens.
Brendan J. McConville is a Professor of History at Boston University. His research focuses on the intersection of politics and social developments in Early America. He is the author of These Daring Disturbers of the Public Peace (Cornell, 1999, paperback University of Pennsylvania, 2003), The King’s Three Faces: The Rise and Fall of Royal America, 1688-1776 (OIEAHC-UNC Press, 2006), and The American Revolution (forthcoming).
J. E. Lendon, Professor of Ancient History at the University of
Virginia will be the respondent to Professor Samons' paper. Professor Lendon has written widely on Ancient wars warfare,
including the following titles: Song of Wrath: The Peloponnesian War,
2010, and Soldiers and Ghosts: A History of Battle in Classical
Antiquity, 2005. In 2002, Professor Lendon received the All-University Outstanding Teacher Award at University of Virginia.
Friday Presentation & Discussion: "The Dangers of a First Citizen: Ancient & Modern"
Beginning with the example of fifth century Athens, Professor Samons and Professor McConville will discuss the dangers of a charismatic, idealistic leader in a democratic environment. Questions for discussion and debate will include how the American founders reacted to examples like Pericles and how they sought to avoid the same thing happening in the U.S. This will be held in the Stern Great Room at 4:30pm.
Saturday Lecture with respondent: "Pericles & Homer"
Professor Samons will discuss controversial aspects of his new biography of the Athenian general and politician, Pericles, to be published by for Cambridge University Press. For instance, he will argue for a radical new understanding of Pericles' relationship to Homeric ideals.This lecture is part of a whole that will be the first hostile biography of Pericles ever written in English. The response will be given by Professor J.E. Lendon. This lecture will be held in Weiss 235 at 2pm.
A concert will directly follow the Saturday event, in Rubendall Recital
Hall, Weiss Center for the Arts. Pianist Jennifer Blyth (Dickinson College) will perform movements three and four of
Charles Ives’ Piano Sonata No. 2 (“Concord Sonata”), and will be joined by
members Michael Cameron (cello) and Elisabeth
Stimpert (clarinet) and by the Peabody Institute’s Courtney
Orlando (violin) to perform the 2004 Pulitzer
Prize-winning Tempest Fantasy by Paul Moravec.
15th Annual Christopher Roberts Lecture
September 21 & 22, 2012
Walter Scheidel, Dickason Professor in the Humanities, Stanford Univeristy
The Long Reach of Antiquity: Rome, China, and Modernity
and social scientists continue to disagree on the causes of the divergent
social and economic development of China and the ‘West’ during much of the last
two centuries. Systematic comparison of key features in the ancient history of
eastern and western Eurasia offers new answers to this fundamental question by
highlighting the evolution and long-term consequences of ancient institutions
and beliefs in their specific ecological contexts. How much did the emergence
of the modern world owe to developments in the distant past?
Ancient societies were shaped by logistical
constraints that are almost unimaginable to modern observers. “ORBIS: The
Stanford Geospatial Network Model of the Roman World” stanford.edu for the
first time allows us to understand the true cost of distance in building and
maintaining a huge empire with premodern technology. This talk explores various
ways in which this novel Digital Humanities tool changes and enriches our
understanding of ancient history.
14th Annual Christopher Roberts Lecture
Friday, September 30th and Saturday, October 1, 2011
Emily Greenwood, Associate Professor
Yale University, Dept of Classics
Prof. Greenwood studied Classics at Cambridge University, where she gained her BA, MPhil, and PhD degrees. Her research interests include ancient Greek historiography, Greek prose literature of the fifth and fourth centuries BCE, twentieth century classical receptions (especially uses of Classics in Africa, Britain, the Caribbean, and Greece), Classics and Postcolonialism, and the theory and practice of translating the 'classics' of Greek and Roman literature.
13th Annual Christopher Roberts Lecture
Edward N. Luttwak, Senior Fellow, Center for Strategic & International Studies, Washington, DC
ctober 1 st & 2nd, 2010
Grand Strategy in Byzantium and Contemporary Washington
Pleasures and Problems in Studying Byzantium
Respondent: John F. Haldon, Princeton University
12th Annual Roberts Lecture
Mary Beard, Newnham College, Cambridge
October 2 & 3, 2009
"Seeing the Funny Side of It: What Made the Romans Laugh?"
2nd lecture: "Perhaps our Expectations were Wrought up too High: Visiting Pompeii in the Nineteenth Century"
11th Annual Roberts Lecture
Jas Elsner, Corpus Christi College, Oxford
October 3 & 4, 2008
"Beyond Compare: Pagan Saint and Christian God in Late Antiquity"
Respondent: Peter T. Struck, University of Pennsylvania
2nd lecture: "Reflections on Jesus' Trial: Image and Rhetoric in Early Christian Sarcophagi"
10th Annual Roberts Lecture
Daniel Mendelsohn, Bard College
October 5 & 6, 2007
"From Roman Games to Reality TV: Mass Entertainment and Imperial Politics, Then and Now"
2nd lecture: "'Lost' Between Witness and History: Writing the Holocaust for the Next Generation"
9th Annual Roberts Lecture
Denis Feeney, Princeton University
September 22 & 23, 2006
"Finding Early Rome in Ancient & Modern Historiography"
Respondent: John Dillery, University of Virginia
2nd lecture: "Wormholes at the Site of Rome: Touring Virgil's Rome in 1177 BC, 20 BC and 2006 AD"
8th Annual Roberts Lecture
Stephen Halliwell, University of St. Andrews
September 23 & 24, 2005
"Laughter and the (Pagan) Body: the Antigelastic Tendencies of Early Christianity"
Respondent: Ralph Rosen, University of Pennsylvania
2nd lecture: "Taking Greek Laughter Seriously"
7th Annual Roberts Lecture
Danielle Allen, University of Chicago
October 1 & 2, 2004
"Homeland Security: Democracy & Knowledge"
Respondent: Ryan Balot, Washington Univ, St. Louis
2nd lecture: "On the Pleasures of Translating Greek Lyric Poetry"
6th Annual Roberts Lecture
Miriam Griffin, Somerville College, Oxford
April 23 and 24, 2004 (postponed from the fall due to hurriane)
"Through the Looking Glass: Seneca's De Beneficiis and Roman Society"
Respondent: Martha Nussbaum, University of Chicago
2nd lecture: "Nero the Showman"
5th Annual Roberts Lecture
Paul Cartledge, Cambridge University
September 20 & 21, 2002
"Citizenship Then and Now: Institution, Practice, or Culture?"
Respondents: Josiah Ober, Princeton; Barry Strauss, Cornell
2nd lecture: "Exemplars of Western Civilization? A Fresh Look at the Ancient Spartans"
4th Annual Roberts Lecture
Martha Nussbaum, University of Chicago
September 28 & 29, 2001
"Duties of Justice, Duties of Material Aid: Cicero's Problematic Legacy"
Respondent: Richard Bett, The Johns Hopkins University
2nd lecture: "Cicero's Letters: Grief in Philosophy & in Life"
3rd Annual Roberts Lecture
Shadi Bartsch, University of Chicago
September 29 & 30, 2000
"Incontient Eyes: An Ethics of the Gaze in Early Imperial Rome"
Respondent: Andrew Feldherr, Princeton
2nd lecture: "A Pint of Blood, a Piece of Flesh: Paradoxes of the Body in the Time of Nero"
2nd Annual Roberts Lecture
Karl Galinsky, Univ of Texas at Austin
September 25 & 26, 1999
"Homer & Tragedy in Vergil's Aeneid"
Respondent: Vassiliki Panoussi, Williams College
2nd lecture: "What is Augustan about the Augustan Age?"