Upcoming Events

2018-2019 Events

From #metoo to the Sicilian Slave Revolts

March 13, 2019

Prof. Dominic Machado, College of the Holycross


From #metoo to the Sicilian Slave Revolts:  What modern protests can teach us about resistance in the Roman world.

Modern protests, such as the Arab Spring, the college protests of 2014, and the Women's March, in concert with sociological approaches to resistance can offer new insights about the nature of protest in the Roman world.  Using the Sicilian Slave Revolts as a case study, this talk will examine how the interconnectedness that defines modern protest is prevalent in ancient forms of resistance as well.  This challenges traditional scholarly views of ancient resistance movements as singular and exceptional events.

Natural Not Yet Understood

April 13, 2019

Natural Not Yet Understood:  The Supernatural from Antiquity to the Medieval Period

Department of Classical Studies Graduate Student Conference.


Keynote Speaker:  Professor Debbie Felton, University of Massachusetts, Amherst

Humans have always been drawn to the idea of creatures and worlds that exist alongside or outside of our own.  These extraordinary ideas can take many forms, from average people with usual abilities to worlds of the dead and fantastic beasts.  But as Elbert Hubbard once said, "The supernatural is the natural not yet understood."  Today, we have realized that many of the past's supernatural events were simply misunderstood natural phenomena.

Possible topics include:  Ancient religion, cultic practices, divination, ghosts and spirits, magic and witchcraft, monsters and the monstrous, mythology, and the preternatural more generally.

We welcome submissions that touch on these and similar topics from graduate students of all levels and from disciplines including:  Anthropology, Art History, Classics, Comparative Literature, History, Jewish Studies, Near Eastern Studies, Philosophy, Religious Studies, Sexuality Studies, and Women's Studies.  

Abstracts of no more than 300 words must be received by January 31, 2019.  Please submit an anonymous abstract to brandeisclasgradconf@gmail.com in PDF (.pdf) format.  AV support will be provided.

Please send all questions to the conference committee:  Derrek Joyce (djjoyce@brandeis.edu), Matthew Previto (mjp6853@brandeis.edu), and Katherine Riggs (kriggs93@brandeis.edu).