Departmental Colloquium 2017–2018: Counter-classical Histories - Displacement, Resistance, and Critique

The discipline of Classics stands at a curious crossroads in academia. It has been displaced from a position of cultural centrality where it epitomized the old Humanities, to an uneasy, contested status where it is often assumed, wrongly, to be incompatible with new, emergent interdisciplinary Humanities.

In departments of Classics, responses to the contrapuntal history of the discipline challenge the parochial, Western conceptions of a Eurocentric ‘classical antiquity’. Through translation, adaptation, and other processes of mediation, Classics offers a sometimes unlikely cosmopolitan vernacular for diverse phenomena. This year-long colloquium will investigate questions of class and status, gender, sexuality, ethnicity, race, and the history of slavery in ancient Greece and Rome. In addition, there will be reflective commentary on the complex histories of appropriation that have seen Classics mobilized in the service of imperialisms, nationalisms, and other invented traditions.

Support is generously provided by the Yale Classics Department, the Edward J. and Dorothy Clarke Kempf Memorial Fund, and the MacMillan Center for International and Area Studies at Yale. For more information, contact

Fridays from 12-3 (Talk from 12:00-1:30, lunch from 1:30-2, workshop from 2:00-3:00), in Phelps 401.

Fall 2017

  • Friday September 1: Donna Zuckerberg (Eidolon)
  • Friday October 6: Grant Parker (Stanford University)
  • Friday November 3: Patrice Rankine (University of Richmond)
  • Friday December 1: Sarah Derbew (Yale University)

Spring 2018

  • Friday January 19: Emily Greenwood (Yale University)
  • Friday February 2: Deborah Kamen (University of Washington)
  • Friday March 2: Margaret Williamson (Dartmouth College)
  • Friday April 6: Denise McCoskey (Miami University, Ohio)
  • Friday May 4: Sasha-Mae Eccleston (Brown University)