Alumni reflect on their time with us

The University’s Alumni Relations team has recently been busy creating some alumni profiles, getting former Reading students to reflect on their time with us.

We were very pleased indeed to see two Classicists among them, and we think we should share this discovery with the world:

We are always delighted to hear from our alumni and alumnae and to stay in touch with you! Why not follow us on Facebook or drop us a line – let us know where life took you, or stay involved, if you still live in the Reading area!

Prestigious Award Nomination for Dr Matthew Nicholls

Dr Matthew Nicholls has been shortlisted for a prestigious Learning on Screen Award by the British Universities Film & Video Council (BUVFC) in the Courseware and Curriculum Non Broadcast/Multimedia Award category. Well done, and fingers crossed!

Read more about the nomination as well as Dr Nicholls’s project of a digital model of the city of Rome here:

New Online Publication on the Greeks in Bactria and India

The online Hellenistic Far East Bibliography, maintained by Dr. Rachel Mairs, has just been updated ( ).  The Hellenistic Far East Bibliography project originated in the 2011 print publication The Archaeology of the Hellenistic Far East: A Survey: Bactria, Central Asia and the Indo-Iranian Borderlands c. 300 BC – AD 100 (Oxford: BAR).  It aims to collate and review publications on the archaeology and epigraphy of the Hellenistic-period Greek settlements of Central Asia and India.  Supplement 1, now available online, covers new publications 2010-2013.  Supplement 2 (forthcoming) will review several recently-published corpora of Greek inscriptions from Iran, Afghanistan and Central Asia.

2013 Classical Association Conference at Reading

The 2013 Classical Association Conference will be hosted by the University of Reading and will take place from Wednesday 3rd to Saturday 6th April.

Highlights of the conference include the presidential address by Robin Osborne, plenary lectures by Alan Sommerstein on translation and Charlotte Roueché on digital Classics, and an informal evening with the author Tom Holland.  Over two hundred speakers will participate in parallel panel sessions on a huge range of subjects, including: the Ancient Ideal in Contemporary Greek Music; the Changing Character of Ancient Warfare; Christianity and the Roman Emperors; Travel Writing and the Idea of the Past; Classics in Children’s Literature; the Ancient Bibliocosm; and a great many topics in Greek and Roman literature and history.  Among the numerous coordinated sessions are panels organised by the American Philological Association, the Council of University Classical Departments, the Joint Association of Classical Teachers, the Classical Reception Studies Network, the International Network on the Legacy of Greek Political Thought, and KYKNOS. One particular highlight of the conference will be the number of panels on issues in Classics teaching, in both secondary and higher education.

Excursions on the afternoon of Thursday, 4th April, will include visits to the Roman town of Silchester, the Ure Museum of Greek Archaeology, the Museum of English Rural Life, and a Thames river cruise.  Delegates will also be able to visit our exhibition hall for browsing and purchasing the latest books from a variety of publishers.

Delegates will be leaving comments on papers and excursions through the conference twitter account @CA2013Reading.

Gordon Lecture on 21 February 2013

The Department of Classics is delighted to issue an invitation to a special lecture and celebration at the Ure Museum of Greek Archaeology, on Thursday 21st February 2013, beginning 4:30 pm. We have established this lecture in celebration of the generous bequest to the Ure Museum of a collection of 75 Carthaginian artefacts and a Roman lamp, in memory of Prof. J.E. Gordon. We are delighted to present Prof. Peter Kruschwitz, Head of the Department of Classics, who will deliver a brief lecture on ‘A Reading lamp’.

Prof. James Edward Gordon (1913–1998), a pioneering materials scientist and biomechanical engineer, served as Professor of Materials Engineering at the University of Reading. His long held interest in the ancient world led to interdisciplinary collaborations, especially with the late Dr John Landels, and their establishment of a joint degree in Classics and Engineering. While that degree is no longer available, Prof. Gordon is well remembered on the campus, not least in the excellent Gordon Theatre, and now with this lecture, which we hope will be continued in the future.

Prof. Gordon’s Carthaginian artefacts were catalogued by University of Reading students, Charley Chamberlain and Alice Honey, in 2011, and conserved and packaged by museum interns, Amy Brown (Canada) and Monica Spaziani (Italy) in 2012. While this remarkable collection forms part of the Ure Museum’s (stored) teaching collection, we will have it on display temporarily for this event. Prof. Gordon’s lamp, studied in 2012 by Hannah Fisher (Christie’s Institute of Education), while a museum intern, is also on temporary display in the Ure Museum, thanks to the efforts of Cara Sheldrake (University of Exeter), herself a former Reading undergraduate. These and the museum’s other displays will be visitable before and throughout the event, so that visitors may view them at their leisure.

The event will commence with drinks from 4:30pm. We would be extremely grateful if visitors could indicate their intention to attend to Guja Bandini at or 0118 378 6990 at their earliest convenience.

Three UROP Placements Available For 2013

Once again the Department of Classics has been very successful indeed in securing UROP placements for our undergraduate studentship.

The UROP (= Undergraduate Research Opportunities Programme) scheme is (almost) unique to Reading, and it gives those of our undergraduate students who are about to move into their final year the opportunity to undertake six weeks of work in collaboration with, and under the supervision of, a member of academic staff, typically resulting in some type of research output that acknowledges student collaboration. This alone is an excellent opportunity (and an asset to any CV), but it gets better – you also get paid, namely £1,200, tax free!

This year’s projects include

For more information please follow the links and visit the UROP webpage:

Still not sure whether you should apply? Listen to Dr Matthew Nicholls and Philip Smither and find out just how amazing this opportunity can be for our students:

Postgraduate Work-in-Progress Seminars, Spring 2013

As in previous years, there will be a series of postgraduate work-in-progress seminars running during the Spring term.  These will begin next week (Week 4) with Mick Stringer presenting his paper, ‘Why are clever men so stupid? Experientia and Experimentum in Roman agricultural treatises.’The seminar will be held on Wednesday 6th February at 1pm in HumSS 287.

All subsequent seminars will be held on Wednesdays at 1pm.  The programme for the remainder of the term is as follows:

Week 5 (13th February): Natalia Tsoumpra (University of Oxford). Venue: Ure Museum.
Week 6 (20th February): Rebecca Fallas (Open University).  Venue: HumSS 287
Chair: Laura Robson.
Week 7 (27th February): Elena Chepel (Reading).  Venue: Ure Museum.
Week 8 (6th March): Lucy Fletcher (Reading).  Venue: Ure Museum.
Week 9 (13th March): Niki Karapanagioti (Reading).  Venue: Ure Museum.
Week 10 (20th March): Nick West (Reading).  Venue: HumSS 287.