Bologna University Greek and Latin Summer School

05/24/2010

From the Classicist-list:

Bologna University Greek and Latin Summer School (28th June – 16th July
2010)

The Department of Classics (http://www.classics.unibo.it ) of Bologna
University is pleased to announce that it is still possible to register to
its Greek and Latin Summer School.

The teaching will be focused both on language and on literature; further
classes will touch on moments of classical history and history of art,
supplemented by visits to museums and archaeological sites (in Bologna and
Rome).

The course will be held in Bologna from 28th June to 16th July 2009 for a
total of 60 hours.
The Greek course will be for beginners only, whereas classes of different
levels (at least beginners and intermediate) are scheduled for Latin.
Participants must be aged 18 or over.

All tuition will be in English.

For further information and to register, please visit:
http://www.unibo.it/summerschool/latin
E-mail: diri_school.latin@unibo.it


Conference: TECHNOPAEGNIA, RIDDLES, ACROSTICHS, POETIC PUNS, METRICAL CURIOSITIES

05/06/2010

Announced on Classicists-list:

CALL FOR PAPERS
ΜΟΥΣΑ ΠΑΙΖΕΙ
GREEK AND LATIN TECHNOPAEGNIA, RIDDLES, ACROSTICHS, POETIC PUNS,
METRICAL CURIOSITIES, ETC.
May 6th and 7th, 2011
Institute of Classical Studies
University of Warsaw

What?
The term technopaegnia is now commonly applied to ancient Greek
pattern poems, but in his 1630 monumental Encyclopaedia Johann
Heinrich Alsted used it in a wider sense, in reference to various
riddling jeux de mots (he managed to list sixty types). Alsted’s
unrestrictive approach is apparently close to the ancient
understanding of what the riddle is, as the Peripatetic philosopher
Clearchus of Soli discussed in his treatise On Riddles (Peri griphon)
Castorion’s Hymn to Pan, a metrical experiment, which is not otherwise
a riddle.
We invite scholars of ancient literature, as well as those interested
in its reception (limited to the classical languages), to engage in a
discussion of poetic and para-poetic riddles, acrostichs, anagrams,
figure-poems, metrical tours de force, literary puns, alliterative
artefacts, etc. – the Alstedian technopaegnia and Clearchian griphoi –
that can be traced in Greek and Roman literature. It is our conviction
that although such eccentricities lack the depth that one often seeks
in ancient literature, serious scholarship must no longer neglect the
effect they have had on contemporary and later poetry, or their role
as documents of the poets’ and grammarians’ tastes and ingenuity. We
wish to focus primarily on the forms that emerged in antiquity, but we
are also interested in what their fates were in the hands of later
poets, scribes, editors, and scholars.
We do not encourage searching for unnoticed puns, acrostichs,
anagrams, and other mirages. Our intention is to provoke an
unorthodox, multidimensional reflection on a relatively neglected
field of ancient literature. Possible topics include the following:
– ancient and modern theoretical approaches to Greek and Latin
riddles, technopaegnia etc.;
– jeux de mots: tradition and innovation (from the archaic riddling
devices and alliteration to the Alexandrian and Roman poetic
experiments);
– ancient riddles in the Indo-European context (e.g. ancient griphoi
vs. Old English riddles);
– riddles and technopaegnia in the light of the orality/literacy debate;
– riddles and riddling devices at the symposium;
– the epigraphic and papyrological evidence for ancient jeux de mots;
– in and around Book 14 of the Greek Anthology;
– the Alexandrianism of the technopaegnia of Laevius, Iulius Vestinus,
and Optatian Porfyry;
– the Byzantine, Renaissance, and 17th-century readers and scholars of
the Greek technopaegnia;
– continuity and change in the history of figure-poems since Simias;
– a matter of taste: critical attitudes toward jeux des mots (e.g. the
Greek technopaegnia).

How?
If you wish to present a paper, please submit a 250-300 word abstract
including the title to the email address given below (.pdf, .doc,
.docx, or .rtf). If your proposal is accepted, you will be required to
provide a full manuscript of a 25-minute paper shortly before the
conference, so that copies can be distributed to the participants. At
the conference, each presentation will be followed by a 20-minute
discussion (that will give a period of 45 minutes for each paper). We
plan to record the discussion and include an edited selection of it in
the conference proceedings.
We invite papers in English, German, French, Italian, and Spanish, but
the working language of the conference will be English.
The registration fee for participants is 150 €; this includes
accommodation (three nights), meals and conference materials.

When?
The conference will be held on May 6th and 7th, 2011.
Please submit abstracts by September 30th, 2010.
Authors will be notified of the result by October 31st, 2010.
Finished papers will have to reach us before March 31th, 2011.
If you wish to respond to one of papers or otherwise participate in
the conference, please express your interest by January 31st, 2011.

Where?
The University of Warsaw is located in the heart of the city,
surrounded by historical places of interest, parks, walks, cafes, and
restaurants. It can be easily reached from the airport, which is just
15 kilometres (9 miles) from the conference site. Further information
will be given upon arrival.
For payment details, enquiries and expression of interest please
contact Jan Kwapisz (preferably by email: jan.kwapisz@uw.edu.pl).
Institute of Classical Studies
University of Warsaw
ul. Krakowskie Przedmieście 1
00-927 Warsaw
Poland
Visit us at http://www.ifk.uw.edu.pl/mousapaidzei.html


An open letter to Ed Balls (on teaching Latin)

04/16/2010

From Tony Keen’s weblog (source: click here)

“Rt Hon Ed Balls MP
Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families
Sanctuary Buildings
Great Smith Street
London
sw1p 3bt

Dear Mr Balls

I am writing concerning your comments on BBC Radio concerning the teaching of Latin. Unfortunately I did not hear these when broadcast, and am only able to judge them as reported in the media. But I gather that you stated that few businesses are asking for Latin, and that you have never been shown an inspiring Latin class, whereas you have been shown inspiring classes in dance, technology or sport.

I am not surprised that businesses are not asking for Latin, but I doubt many are asking for sport or dance either. In any case, our educational needs should not be geared solely to the needs of business. To do so would reduce our educational establishment to business schools and technology colleges, with only English and foreign languages surviving from the humanities (and even then clearly only for commercial use, and not for reading Voltaire or Tolstoy in the original). Of course we need business schools and technology colleges, but a nation that had nothing else would be intellectually and culturally impoverished.

It does not surprise me that you have never been shown an inspirational Latin lesson. But it is illogical to assume that, because you have not seen any, they do not exist. There is no subject so inherently dull that it cannot be presented to a class in an inspiring fashion by an enthusiastic and motivated teacher. Many, if not most, students able to study Latin will recognise that inspirational Latin lessons certainly exist.

I would suggest two reasons why you have not been shown any. First, the vast majority of state schools, due a number of factors, of which lack of government support is one of the more important, have dropped Latin from the syllabus. So they are not in a positio0n to show you an inspiring Latin lesson, even if they wanted to.

The second reason is that when a government minister comes to visit, a school wants to make a good impression, and so will gear what they present around what they think will contribute to that. For at least twenty years, education ministers from both parties have given the impression, explicitly or implicitly, that they do not look with favour upon Latin as a subject. Hence the school will show the minister a lesson in a subject (such as dance, technology or sport) that the minister does look upon with favour. In other words, you are not shown inspirational Latin lessons because you and most of your predecessors have given the impression that you do not want to be shown inspirational Latin lessons.

So, Mr Balls, I offer you a challenge. Next time you are in a school where Latin is taught, ask to see a Latin lesson. I think you may be surprised.”


BMCR reviews of linguistic publications – February 2010

02/07/2010

Links will open new windows:

  • Ann Bergren, Weaving Truth: Essays on Language and the Female in Greek Thoughts. Hellenic Studies; 19. Cambridge, Mass./London: 2008: http://bmcr.brynmawr.edu/2010/2010-02-06.html
  • Frédérique Biville, Jean-Claude Decourt, Georges Rougemont, Bilinguisme gréco-latin et épigraphie: actes du colloque, 17-19 mai 2004. Collection de la Maison de l’Orient et de la Méditerranée 37; série épigraphique et historique 6. Lyon: 2008: http://bmcr.brynmawr.edu/2010/2010-02-12.html

BMCR reviews of linguistic publications – January 2010

02/05/2010

Links will open new windows:


When languages die…

02/05/2010

An interesting story about the death of a language is reported in the Independent. Here is the link (will open new window).


Greek and Latin Summer School

01/15/2010

From the Classicists list:

Bologna University Greek and Latin Summer School (28th June – 16th July
2010)

The Department of Classics (http://www.classics.unibo.it ) of Bologna
University welcomes applications to its Greek and Latin Summer School.

The teaching will be focused both on language and on literature; further
classes will touch on moments of classical history and history of art,
supplemented by visits to museums and archaeological sites (in Bologna and
Rome).

The course will be held in Bologna from 28th June to 16th July 2009 for a
total of 60 hours.

The Greek course will be for beginners only, whereas classes of different
levels (at least beginners and intermediate) are scheduled for Latin.

Participants must be aged 18 or over.
All tuition will be in English.

For further information and to enrol, please visit:
http://www.unibo.it/summerschool/latin
E-mail: diri_school.latin@unibo.it