In this last of my presidential letters, I take the opportunity to inform you of a new SCS initiative to establish a wider audience for classics. At last year’s Presidential Panel, Robert Connor made an impassioned plea for our Society to undertake the expansion of classics in institutions of higher learning. While Departments of Classics appear to be holding their own across the country, it is evident that the emphasis on STEM disciplines and support for interdisciplinary education at the expense of traditional departments provide challenges to classics education as we know it. The changing landscape of twenty-first century education can, however, also provide opportunities for broadening education in classics, if we think creatively.
Welcome to the Society for Classical Studies
Founded as the American Philological Association in 1869 by "professors, friends, and patrons of linguistic science," the SCS is the principal learned society in North America for the study of ancient Greek and Roman languages, literatures, and civilizations. While the majority of its members are university and college Classics teachers, members also include scholars in other disciplines, primary and secondary school teachers, and interested lay people.
Follow the APA Blog to stay up to date with announcements, calls for papers, and other news. Here are the latest announcements from the APA:
Letter from the President: Expanding the Audience for Classics
147th Annual Meeting
The joint annual meeting of the SCS and AIA will take place at the San Francisco Hilton in San Francisco, CA, from January 6-9, 2016. Read here about the types of sessions that take place at the meeting and the materials that members wishing to participate in a certain type of session must submit for each one.
SCS members may now submit proposals and individual abstracts to the SCS Program Committee for review at its meeting in June. Before you make a submission, please read these general instructions for using the submission system and these general regulations concerning a member’s eligibility to make a submission. This page contains descriptions of the types of sessions held at the meeting as well as detailed lists of the materials required by the Program Committee for each one.
To get started, you must register a new account on the submission site. Your existing log-on credentials for any other site affiliated with the SCS will not work on this site—including the credentials you may have created if you used the submission site last year. You will need your SCS Member ID to establish an account. If you do not know your ID number, you can use the membership lookup tool to find it.
Your membership must be current to use this site. If you need to renew your membership, please go to https://associations.press.jhu.edu/cgi-bin/apa/apa_membership.cgi. If you are not sure whether you have paid your SCS dues for the current year, ask the customer service staff at the Johns Hopkins University Press at firstname.lastname@example.org, 800-548-1784 (US and Canada only), or 410-516-6987 (all others). If you have not yet paid dues for 2015, please allow AT LEAST A MONTH for a) your payment to be received and processed by Johns Hopkins and (b) your record to be uploaded to the SCS submission system. If your dues payment was processed by February 10, you should be able to use the site immediately.
Members submitting proposals for panels, committee panels, seminars, or workshops or reports of organizer-refereed panels or affiliated groups previously chartered to hold a session at the 2016 meeting should note the following submission requirement instituted last year: The system will ask for the SCS member number of every participant in the session.
The deadline for submission of all proposals except individual abstracts will be April 8, 2015. The deadline for submission of individual abstracts will be April 27, 2015. Visit program.apaclassics.org to make your submission.
SCS committees regularly submit panel proposals for review by the Program Committee. In some cases, rather than simply assembling the panel from invited papers, the committee issues a general call for abstracts and includes some of the submissions it receives in response to its call in the proposal it ultimately sends to the Program Committee. Members who respond to calls for abstracts issued by committees other than the Program Committee should understand that their abstract may receive blind review twice: by the committee that issued the call and by the Program Committee itself.
The following SCS committees have issued a call for abstracts for the panel they intend to organize at the 2016 Annual Meeting:
Committee on Ancient History: The Future of Ancient History: Teaching the Past in the Modern Curriculum
Committee on Ancient and Modern Performance: New Wine in Old Wineskins: The Place of Athenian Drama in Modern Society
The Program Committee has approved seven proposals submitted by members wishing to hold organizer-refereed panels, and twenty-two affiliated groups have charters to review abstracts and hold sessions. The SCS's usual regulations concerning eligibility to submit an abstract apply to these sessions. Note especially that a presenter who is responding to one of these calls for abstracts is not eligible for a waiver of the membership requirement. If a member’s paper is accepted for an Organizer-Refereed Panel or Affiliated Group session, that member may not submit another abstract for consideration by the Program Committee for a regular paper session.
Organizer-Refereed Panels. Click on this link to see the titles of organizer-refereed panels authorized for 2016. Then click on each individual title to read the call for abstracts. Abstracts submitted to organizer-refereed panels should be sent to the SCS Office (email@example.com) and are due no later than 11:59 p.m., Eastern Time, on Monday, March 2, 2015.
Affiliated Groups. Click on this link to see the list of groups chartered to organize sessions for the 2016 meeting. Then click on the group's name to read its call for abstracts. Each group has different instructions and deadlines for submission.
The SCS Program Committee encourages SCS members to organize joint panels, seminars, or workshops in cooperation with AIA members. Submissions must be made to both organizations and conform to the guidelines of both the SCS and the AIA. No limit has been placed on the number of such sessions that can be scheduled each year. Please note that the Program Committees of the two societies review each proposal independently. Depending on the outcomes of these deliberations, a particular session may be accepted for both programs, for only one program, or for neither.
There is no separate process to submit a proposal for a joint session to the SCS. When the program submission system becomes available, follow the instructions for the type of session you are proposing, and be sure to answer “yes” when the system asks if you are also submitting the proposal to the AIA. Where the system asks for a participant's SCS member number, you may enter "AIA Member" instead as necessary. Keep in mind, however, that if the SCS Program Committee accepts the panel, but AIA does not, all participants in the session will need to pay SCS dues for 2015. Please consult AIA guidelines for details on their submission process. Please note that if you intend to submit a proposal for a panel to the AIA as a possible joint session, the submission deadlines for AIA are March 8, 2015 and March 22 (with $25 fee).
Last modified on February 20, 2015
The Amphora: A Publication of the Society for Classical Studies
Amphora is currently an annual publication that aims to convey the excitement of classical studies to a broad readership by offering accessible articles written by professional scholars and experts on topics of classical interest that include literature, language, mythology, history, culture, classical tradition and the arts, and by featuring reviews of current books, films, and web sites. Sponsored by the Committee on Outreach and supported by the APA, Amphora will be for everyone interested in the study of ancient Greece and Rome.
On a wintry day in 1996, I was thumbing through catalogues in a deserted corner of the library of Beijing Normal University when my attention was suddenly seized by some titles in a language strangely familiar. I could easily decipher them because of their resemblance to English words, and I knew the names of the authors as I had read them in translations. Latin! My instinct told me. I relayed this discovery to my teacher of Shakespearean plays, a BA in Classics who had just graduated from Oxford. The next morning saw us standing in front of a counter in the most secluded part of the library, after spiraling flights of gloomy stairs. A long silence ensued before the books were fetched from a bank ten stories above and presented before us. In a thrilled voice, my teacher began to read a Latin passage aloud to me.
In September 2012, Joseph Epstein published an essay in the Weekly Standard called Who Killed the Liberal Arts? The piece provoked lively response on the Classics List and at least one rapid, articulate response, by Katie Billotte in Salon.
The Oresteia demands a large canvas. Its trajectory, from the end of the Trojan War to Athena's creation of the first trial by jury, is huge. It is the story of the movement from a tribal cry for blood revenge to a system of justice designed by a god but carried out by men. It addresses the struggle between male and female, chthonic and Olympian gods, tribe and polis, law and tradition, justice and revenge. When we first contemplated the notion of staging the Oresteia at Carleton College we were of course aware of the scale of this undertaking. But even so, the full magnitude of the production that resulted, and its impact on our campus and community, ended up taking us by surprise.
At the entrance of the maximum security prison where I taught Greek tragedy was a wooden plaque in the shape of a shield. It was emblazoned with a motto: Non sum qualis eram. Apart from its incongruity in this place of no Latin and less Greek, the motto struck me as equally a declaration of failure and of hope. The men inside were not what they once were. What were they now?
In this issue of Amphora we are fortunate to have our Executive Director Adam Blistein’s account of his introduction to classics through a particularly gifted high school teacher and coach, Alfred Morro, and Adam’s comments on what that experience has meant to him. It was serendipity that Adam proposed his article to your Amphora staff for this issue, but his essay also fits nicely with another topic that has been under discussion among the APA’s Outreach division: thinking about our origins, about our path to classical studies, and what that tells us.
From Gatekeeper to Gateway: The Campaign for Classics
At the 144th Annual Meeting in January in Seattle, the APA celebrated the triumphant conclusion of the Gatekeeper to Gateway Campaign, steered to its harbor by President Jeffrey Henderson. The Association honored the Campaign Committee members responsible for this achievement and presented Distinguished Service Awards to the three visionary and energetic APA members who provided such outstanding leadership from the beginning to the end of the Campaign: Ward W. Briggs, Jr., David H. Porter, and Michael C.J. Putnam. Later that month this year’s President, Denis Feeney, published a letter to members describing the projects that the new endowment is already funding and our ambitious plans for the future.
The APA has raised over $3 million that will enable it to continue to transform the field of Classics and to serve students, teachers, and scholars in the 21st century.
Transactions of the American Philological Association
TAPA, the official research publication of the American Philological Association, reflects the wide range and high quality of research currently undertaken by classicists.
- Craig Gibson Becomes Editor of TAPA Effective January 6, 2014 Note: Professor Gibson will handle new submissions effective immediately. Please send all submissions electronically to firstname.lastname@example.org, following TAPA guidelines. Katharina Volk will remain the official Editor through 2013 and in charge of producing this year's issues (143.1 and 2).
- The new TAPA style sheet
- TAPA Guidelines
- TAPA available online to subscribing institutions and APA members in good standing
- APA Presidential Talks delivered at Annual Meetings