An Oslo conference experience

It’s not often that you get the opportunity to combine a fantastic holiday with a conference that’s completely perfect for you. So, when I first saw the Call for Papers for a conference on classical translation in Oslo (via the Classicists list), I knew that I had to apply.

The Fall of the Roman Republic, the rise of the ‘Alt-Right,’ and Shia LeBeouf

The conflict between Clodius and Milo was not purely personal, but rather part of an ongoing and increasingly violent conflict between the two factions vying for control of the Roman political scene.

Contemporary Productions of Greek plays

Text by Lynn Fotheringham For the last two years, almost all my leisure-time has been taken up with running around the country trying to see as many as possible of the productions of Greek tragedy that were being put on. I fitted in three Medeas, three Oresteias, two Antigones, one Bakkhai, one Women of Troy, one …

Gout: the heroic malady?

Nick Wilshere muses on a ‘humorous’ painful disease: Painful chronic disease is not something that we generally consider a source of humour. Yet gout – inflammation of the joints, especially in the feet, caused by the formation of monosodium urate crystals – has a long history of being discussed in playful and humorous ways. As long ago …

Queen of the Silver Arrow competition

      Prize: copy of Queen of the Silver Arrow, signed by Caroline Lawrence. Write a tweet or a blogpost (up to 500 words) to tell us how children’s literature or media has influenced your understanding of or enthusiasm for the Greeks and Romans. Were you inspired to become a classicist by reading Harry …

The challenge of Virgil as children’s literature

Helen Lovatt explores Virgil as YA literature: Caroline Lawrence has just published Queen of the Silver Arrow, an excellent retelling of Virgil’s Camilla episode, with Barrington Stoke, aimed at reluctant teenage readers. It is simply written, with a reading age of about 8, but contains challenging content more suitable for 12+. This makes it really …

From Aulis to Game of Thrones

Lynn Fotheringham tells us about the story of Iphigenia: I became fascinated with the story of the sacrifice of Iphigenia when I was a little girl. I first saw Cacoyannis’ 1977 film, Iphigenia, when taking a Greek-tragedy-in-translation course at Iowa State in what would now be called my ‘gap year’ in 1986—thanks, David Roochnik and …

Stagestruck: Interviewing Robert Icke

Lynn Fotheringham reports on an exclusive interview with Robert Icke: Recently I went down to London to interview Robert Icke of the Almeida Theatre for my forthcoming conference, Sacrificing Iphigenia Through the Ages. His mind-blowing modernisation of Aeschylus’ Oresteia (which he both wrote and directed) wowed London theatre-audiences this summer, first at the Almeida and …

Charting the Spartan Mirage

Dr Philip Davies discusses the intellectual background to a conference on Plutarch and Sparta, to be held in Nottingham on 31 March.   At the core of any research on Sparta lies a peculiar methodological dilemma. Sparta is one of the most renowned of the ancient Greek city-states, and after its defeat of Athens in …

A Reign of Terror

As part of the Nottingham ‘Anniversaries through Coins’ project, Larissa Ransom describes how, on this day, 20th January 175AD, Commodus was enrolled into all sacred colleges as priest Commodus (Caesar Marcus Aurelius Commodus Antoninus Augustus) was born on 31st August 161AD to Marcus Aurelius and his wife, Faustina the Younger. He was the sole surviving …