Classics Talks is delighted to announce a preview of the content of a soon-to-be-published book. Professor Samuel N. C. Lieu (Inaugural Distinguished Professor of Ancient History, Macquarie University, Sydney, Fellow of the Australian Academy (Humanities), currently Visiting Fellow at Wolfson College, Cambridge) has kindly agreed to record his public lecture, which is one of the public events centred around the international conference Classics and Classicists in WWI. His illustrated talk on Australians’ use of classics to understand events and experiences in WWI will be available on this site, but anyone who is able to attend in person is most welcome.
The battle landscapes of Gallipoli and the Dardanelles campaign in WWI overlay those of ancient Troy, as memorialised in Homer’s Iliad. Prof. Lieu will show how soldiers reflected on those mythological resonances and how classical themes were absorbed into the memorials of ANZAC (Gallipoli) Day as a new Australian myth of foundation and identity.
The Centenary Gallery is on the Parkinson Court level of the Parkinson Building, University of Leeds. Wheelchair access is currently through Chemistry due to building work.
Other public events include performance of extracts from Gilbert Murray’s 1905 English-rhyming-verse translation of Euripides’ Trojan Women – the world’s greatest antiwar play (according to Eleanor OKell, 2012) or “the world’s greatest peace play” (according to the Women’s Peace Party, 1915) – 17:00-19:00 9th April 2014 and a number of exhibitions. Exhibitions in Parkinson Court focus on experiences of WWI in the north of England, including the Scarborough, Hartlepool, West Hartlepool and Whitby bombardment of 16th December 1915. An exhibition in Special Collections presents “Songs of Troy” exploring links between the 2nd Trojan War (as narrated by Homer in the Iliad) and WWI made by soldier-poets, Americans responding to Murray’s translation, Margaret Storm Jameson and Simon Armitage. A further exhibition on clasicists’ contribution to the war effort is open only to conference delegates but the materials will be made available through talks and online in the near/mid-term future.
Edmund Stewart, expert in the early reperformance of Greek drama, discusses the feats of imagination necessary for ancient and modern dramaturgs and audiences to visualise Greek drama, both on the stage and in the mind’s eye.
The precise venue will be sign-posted on the day, or please ask Museum staff at the entrance.
In his talk “Roman Eagles, On-screen Flights of Fancy” Ben Greet, doctoral candidate in Classics, Leeds University, explores the presence of the Roman legionary standard on the large and small screen and its relationship to the reality behind it. The talk brings Roman miltary and cultural expertise together with semiotic, spatial and cinematographic criticism. The talk will consider several versions of Spartacus and Legions of the Eagle among others…
Please check for the venue on arrival at the Museum.
This password protected webpage (Password: George2014) houses the resources created by classicists to introduce performing arts students on a module that takes a Greek tragedy from the page to the modern stage for performance in Leeds in May 2014. It will be useful to students or teachers of any subject at any level who are interested in Euripides’ Bacchae as a performance that originated in C5th BC Athens.
The resources consist of audio-recorded presentations, with accompanying PowerPoint slides and handouts where applicable, which provide some specific bibliography for follow-up, if desired.
Talks are currently being added as they are delivered to students (during February 2014). These will be edited into a resource pack over the next few weeks. Talks will focus on:
- Historical theatrical context
- Pentheus’ character
Contact email addresses are provided, if you have any further queries.
We’d appreciate knowing how you used our materials, so please take a moment to tick a box on the survey at the bottom of the webpage when you have finished.
Roger Brock, expert on ancient wine, talks about what did (and did not) go on at Greek drinking parties (symposia). The talk will provide an introduction to ancient wine-drinking, including the vessels involved (some examples of which can be viewed in the Leeds City Museum’s Ancient Worlds Gallery) and the regulatory practices adopted to limit drunken and anti-social behaviour – ranging from the volume and alcohol content of the watered wine drunk to the religious dimension of drinking parties to the influence of peer pressure.
This talk includes some of the material used for Light Night 2012, where Roger appeared in conversation with Dionysus/Bacchus, god of wine.
The talk will take place in the Ancient Worlds Gallery (top floor of the Museum, accessible by lift from the entrance level) and will be artefact focused.
It has been necessary to postpone this talk until a later date in the series (to be confirmed) due to ill health. We apologise for the short-notice and thank those who have taken an interest.
Cary MacMahon talks about the survival of fourth century AD (“Coptic”) textiles and the journeys that have brought them – in pieces – to British Museums. Hear about the role of the excavations of Flinders Petrie and the involvement of the Scottish dry-cleaning trade!The focus of the talk will be to contextualise the survival of two specific fragments in the Leeds City Museums’ collection and suggest the location of other fragments of what might be the same garment.
Following a recent presentation at the “Swords, Sorcery, Sandals and Space: The Fantastika and the Classical World” Science Fiction Foundation Conference in Liverpool (29 June – 1 July 2013) on Classical names in Suzanne Collins’ Hunger Games trilogy, Eleanor OKell incorporated the Classical names and images of Lions Gate Entertainment Inc. and director/adaptor Gary Ross’ Hunger Games film and the pre-publicity for Catching Fire (world premiere 11th November 2013, London; in cinemas from 22nd November 2013).
In a world where trust is hard to come by and nothing is what it seems, this talk explored whether recognising references to the classical past can tip the odds in the readers’ and viewers’ favour and discovers that classical references play a role both in simplifying and complicating matters.
View the PowerPoint slides (as pdf document).
Listen to the talk:
Malcolm Heath talked about the many places in which Plato’s mythical community of Atlantis has been located and explored the reasons underpinning those decisions and what they revealed about the intellectual landscape of their originators. The talk provided a fascinating insight into the history of ideas and the relevance of apparent “crack pots” for understanding wider ideological contexts and their historical implications.
This talk expanded on the material used for Light Night 2013, taking it beyond the Victorian period.
Listen to (Mis)Locating Atlantis: between reason and unreason
Download the pdf of the PowerPoint slides (with a superb selection of maps)
Malcolm Heath talks about the many places in which Plato’s mythical community of Atlantis has been located and explores the reasons underpinning these decisions and what they reveal about the logic and ideological positions of their originators. The talk provides a fascinating insight into the history of ideas and the relevance of apparent “crack pots” for understanding wider ideological contexts and their historical implications.
This talk expands on the material used for Light Night 2013, taking it beyond the Victorian period.
As part of her work in the archives of Leeds City Museum, Anna Reeve has been conducting research into the identities of the donors of Leeds City Museum’s Cypriot ceramics collection. In this talk she showed items from the Museum store as well as the Ancient Worlds Gallery and explored how these artefacts survived to the modern period and how the passion of individuals for them led to their coming to be in Leeds.
“Travelers in Time and Space: Leeds City Museum’s Cypriot Ceramics” introduced the Leeds-linked collector Miss Stott (see photo, below), who was being brought to life for Light Night 2013 as part of “Dr OKell’s Carnival of Ancient Wonders” on Friday 4th October.
Listen to “Travelers in Time and Space”
View the Prezi (dynamic slide show) online.