Research seminars - Classics, Ancient History and Archaeology

The Department of Classics, Ancient History and Archaeology is pleased to announce the following programme of research seminars for the current semester.

The CAHA Seminar is the regular research seminar of the Department of Classics, Ancient History and Archaeology at Birmingham. Papers typically last 40 minutes and are followed by questions and discussion, and there is often an opportunity to join the speaker later over dinner. Speakers range from our own final-year PhD students to prominent national and international scholars in the range of subject areas (excluding Byzantium) covered by CAHA. Other seminar programmes include those of the Centre for Byzantine, Ottoman and Modern Greek Studies and the Classical Archaeology series

Please note that we have adopted a no nut policy for the seminar series, due to a graduate student with a severe nut allergy. Triggering this allergy will mean hospitalisation and can potentially be fatal. Please do not bring any nuts or nut-based products into the seminar.

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The challenges of building a state anew: Egypt in the early Middle Kingdom

11/12/2019 (16:00-18:00)
Juan Carlos Moreno Garcia (Paris) delivers the Classics, Ancient History and Archaeology seminar.

Approaching the 'Macedonian Dynasty': family and gender

16/01/2020 (17:15-18:30)
Shaun Tougher delivers the Byzantine, Ottoman and Modern Greek Studies seminar.

The view from the edge: Byzantium and post-Roman Hispania

23/01/2020 (17:15-18:30)
Jamie Wood delivers the Byzantine, Ottoman and Modern Greek Studies seminar.

Female agency in Mystras: fashion indices in late Byzantine art

30/01/2020 (17:15-18:30)
Andrea Mattiello delivers the Byzantine, Ottoman and Modern Greek Studies seminar.

Living heritage in Greece: perceptions of traditional settlements

06/02/2020 (17:15-18:30)
Ioanna Katapidi delivers the Byzantine, Ottoman and Modern Greek Studies seminar.

'Augustine's women'

13/02/2020 (17:15-18:30)
Kate Cooper delivers the Byzantine, Ottoman and Modern Greek Studies seminar.

Play and Learn: artefacts of childhood in Late Antique Egyptian houses and monasteries

27/02/2020 (17:15-18:30)
April Pudsey delivers the Byzantine, Ottoman and Modern Greek Studies seminar.

Title to be confirmed

05/03/2020 (17:15-18:30)
Antonia Gatward Cevizli delivers the Byzantine, Ottoman and Modern Greek Studies seminar.
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Previous seminars:


5th December - Approaches to the Byzantine novel

4th December - Building God's empire: archaeology, religion and the Byzantine reconquest of Africa

27th November - For Themistocles of Phrearrhioi, for the sake of honour'. A new perspective on the Athenian institution of ostracism

21st November - Morale and discipline in the Ottoman army,.c.1450-c.1600

20th November - Lachares and Menander: a theatre-historical look at POxy 1235, col. iii, 103-12

14th November - Institutionalising citizenship in ancient Greece

14th November - Byzantium and Africa: a new frontier

13th November - Magistrates' accountability and epigraphic documents in the Greek cities: accounts and inventories

31st October - Byzantium: commonwealth, empire or nation-state?

24th October - Bridging the Gap: processions in early medieval Constantinople

23rd October - Debating Tiberian political discourse

17th October - English chaplains and the Greek Church in 18th-century Aleppo

16th October - A report on the 2019 Bays of East Attica Regional Survey (BEARS) Project

10th October - Islamisation and Sufism in Mongol Anatolia and beyond

9th October - Tom Irson's head: a case study in the reception of Lucian of Samosata

21st March - Flavius Josephus in medieval Greek and Latin Histories: some cross-cultural approaches

20th March - Making Time: Physical Manifestations of Time in Ancient Art

14th March - Francis Bacon in Ancient Greek. Nikolaos Mavrokordatos (1680-1730) and cultural mobility

7th March - Consular networks, shipping routes, and the Ottoman world in the late 19th century

6th March - Medicine, Empire and Difference in the Roman World

28th February - Greek Adoptees Anonymous: adoption, memory and Cold War Greece

27th February - Recasting the Chorus: Non-citizen choral performers in fifth and fourth-century Attic drama

14th February - 'Remnants of Byzantium': the uses of the past by the expatriated Greeks of Turkey

7th February - Kantakouzenos' daemon: providence and persuasion in late Byzantine historiography

6th February - Winckelmann's love letters: epistolarity, sexuality and classical reception

31st January - Unlikely migrants: slavery, emancipation, and race in the Reform-Era Ottoman Mediterranean

30th January - Dido: Reclaiming a Carthaginian Queen

24th January - Interpreting the Constantinopolitan landscape: A Rus traveller in Byzantium

23rd January - Ovid's Metamorphic Roman Cycle: Epic after Ardea Burns

17th January-17th February - Environment, economy and landscape in early modern Cyprus

16th January - Wearing Rome: the toga and the Roman man


13th December - Reconfiguring the template: Representations of powerful women in historical fiction - the case of Anna Komnene

12th December - Fear of Redundancy in Babylon: The Hellenistic Esagil Temple

6th December - Ottoman dreams of destiny and omens of greatness

5th December - Spaces of contestation and diplomatic danger at Rome

29th November - Sultans as saviors: early modern Mediterranean Jewish accounts of the Ottoman rulers

28th November - Pride of Place and the Greek polis and island histories: why write a local history?

22nd November - The church of St John the Theologian and the End of Antiquity in Constantinople

21st November - Sensing Divinity: Smell, Society and the Gods

15th November - Current archaeological research on settlement and provincial life in the Byzantine Mediterranean: the case of the Peloponnese

14th November - Shameful kisses: a potted history of the reception - and rejection - of Catullus' lover Juventius

1st November - Byzantine influence in Winchester Cathedral?

25th October - Equines and the margins of Byzantine power: humility or humiliation?

24th October - On Translating Sappho

18th October - Invention and reality in Byzantine historical narratives: the impact of Polyaenus and military manuals on the Alexiad of Anna Komnene

17th October - Horace's Ode 1.12: Subterranean Lyrics

11th October - Travellers' Tales

22nd March - Greek cinema as European cinema: co-productions, film festivals and the Weird Wave

21st March - Herculaneum. From excavation archives to 3D digitization of houses

8th March - Justinian II, the image of Christ and taxation

7th March - Women and the foundation of Greek colonies

28th February - The chorus in fourth-century revivals of Greek tragedy

22nd February - Between Mosul and Rome: the Church of the East in the seventeenth century

21st February - Desire & Virtue: Valerius Maximus' Handling of Philosophical Ideas

13th February - Medical Humanities and Medieval Literature? Voices, Breath, Feeling

8th February - Scale-making projects: Byzantium and the Christian communities of Khazaria

7th February - Defacing the enemy: punishment, order, and visual representation in Assyria

1st February - The Ottoman canon of historical writing and writing the history of Kanun in the sixteenth century

31st January - The long lives of ancient statues: new finds, new research at Aphrodisias

25th January - Villehardouin's castle of Grand Magne (Megali Maini): a re-assessment of the evidence for its location

24th January - Annual Medieval and Early Modern lecture

18th January - Who's who in sixteenth-century Ottoman Istanbul

17th January - Competitive Worship? Greek Gods between Hellenistic Rulers and Republican Rome

11th January - Scale-making projects: Byzantium and the Christian communities of Khazaria


6th December - Making canon out of nothing, or the peculiar history of a few Mesopotamian objects, and a few odd comments about Sumerian literature

30th November - Turkey and liberal democracy? Authoritarian drift since 2007

23rd November - When the "I" becomes "we": From personal to collective memories. Reflections from locals in Greek traditional settlements.

23rd November - 'This land is your land'

16th November - The Cypriot Canzoniere and Italian Renaissance music

15th November - Faking it in Antiquity: The Letters of Marcus Brutus and Mithridates

9th November - Title to be confirmed

9th November - 'Glorified from heaven above'

8th November - Politics of Collecting in nineteenth century Greece

26th October - Exploring perceptions of heritage in Greek traditional settlements

26th October - History, time, and economic crisis in Central Greece

19th October - Old statues, new meanings. Literary and archaeological evidence for Christian re-interpretation of classical statuary

18th October - How do Egyptian hieroglyphs and other images both work together and stay apart?

12th October - Reading the Acts of the Sixth Ecumenical Council (680-1)

10th October - Title to be confirmed

10th October - 'I am Antony yet': Reading Mark Antony's Mail

10th October - Title to be confirmed

5th October - Title to be confirmed

5th October - Travellers' Tales

4th October - Making sense of Sulla: memory, recovery and Cicero's early speeches

28th September - Constructing an ontology of the historic battlefield (or, some of what we did on our holiday)

27th September - Is it a farm? The archaeology of farmsteads in mainland Greece

15th March - The unsayable in Ovid's Remedia Amoris

14th March - Online Ovids: the exiles of Marie Darrieussecq and Saviana Stãnescu

8th March - The imperial senate and the city of Rome

28th February - Antinous and the Lerna mysteries: A marble statue from the sanctuary of Demeter Prosymna and Dionysus

22nd February - 'And there was no one who would remember it': technologies of remembrance and the materialisation of social memory in Middle Kingdom Egypt

7th February - The Canopus conundrum: statuary from the underwater excavations in Abu Kir, Egypt

31st January - Bad art? What can we learn if we dare discuss quality in Roman provincial sculpture from Moesia Superior

25th January - The Tiburtine Sibyl at the Villa d'Este: Oracular Encounters & Prophetic Locales

17th January - Preserving the hidden seeds: what happened to Celtic art in Roman Britain?

11th January - The religious life of Dura-Europos in twenty-five (relatively unknown) objects

10th January - The Aphrodite of Emesa: Marble statuettes and religious life in Roman Syria