Dr Aarón Alzola Romero has received the 2012 Journal of Distance Education Editor's Award for his article "One Laptop per College Student? Exploring the Links between Access to IT Hardware and Academic Performance in Higher Education e-Learning Programs". The JDE Editor’s Award is for the most outstanding publication or contribution in the Journal of Distance Education during that year of publication and encourages excellence in scholarship in the field of open and distance education.
The winning essay for the 2012 submission has been announced as Cheryl Gupta for her essay ‘Cattle in the Mythlology and Culture of Ancient Greece: a brief survey’.
The John Stephen Kassman Memorial Essay Prize in Classical Studies, intended to develop and foster study of Classical Antiquity in the Open University, is awarded for the best essay in an annual competition. The competition is open to all current OU Undergraduates and Associate students and the award will take the form of a book token (or other academic related goods) to the value of £100.
Entries are now invited for the next submission. Notice to enter the competition should be sent, together with the proposed essay title, by 30 June 2013 to The Departmental Co-ordinator. The deadline for receipt of essays will be 30 September 2013.
Full details are available from the Classical Studies Noticeboard pages which are available to OU students and tutors from the Studying the Arts website under Classical Studies. You will need to be logged in using your OU computer username.
We are delighted to be able to offer a fully funded MA scholarship made possible through the generosity of Baron Lorne Thyssen-Bornemisza. The scholarship will provide for the full fees of a three year part-time MA studentship in Classical Studies at the Open University, subject to satisfactory academic progress in each of the modules (A860, A861 and A867). Follow this link for further details. Deadline: 12th November 2012.
The Department has just launched the third issue of the online journal Practitioners' Voices in Classical Reception Studies. This issue focuses on the relationship between classical antiquity and contemporary art, and includes interviews with six practitioners working in different genres and media: Christie Brown, Richard Shirley Smith, Norman McBeath, Robert Crawford, Marian Maguire and Craig Hamilton. Read this issue online now.
The Open University in London will host a half-day Olympics-inspired conference on June 18th 2012 from 5pm-8pm. Coordinated by Dr Aarón Alzola Romero of the Department of Classical Studies in association with the Olympics 2012 Humanities programme, this event explores how athletic events draw influence from heritage, thus allowing modern individuals and groups to construct, reinvent, consolidate and project their identities by establishing links with their past. The approach is multi-disciplinary, combining contributions from history, sociology, classics, anthropology, archaeology and political sciences.
Everybody is welcome. Attendance is free but places are limited. See the conference website for details of the programme and how to reserve a place.
This one day symposium will explore the theme of war as spectacle in classical antiquity and its reception in subsequent centuries, down to the present day. The event is generously sponsored by the Faculty of Arts and the Department of Classical Studies.
Follow this link for full details of the programme and how to register.
The Ancient Olympics unit, a free-to-use learning resource exploring the links between the ancient and modern Olympic Games, has won an OpenCourseWare Consortium award for excellence for its use of multimedia. This was announced at the OER12 conference in Cambridge. The unit was written by Dr Aarón Alzola Romero (Classical Studies) in collaboration with a group of international scholars. Follow this link for a short video overview of the unit. Find out more about the OCW Awards.
Drayton House, UCL, London
Tuesday 15 May, 2012, 10 a.m. – 3.45 p.m.
A Classical Reception Studies Network/Higher Education Academy Workshop
This workshop, generously supported by the Higher Education Academy and hosted
by the Open University and CRSN, will enable higher education teachers with
experience of and/or interest in teaching reception topics to meet for focused
discussion of some of the most pressing issues relating to classical receptions and
pedagogy. Download the programme [PDF].
The Department of Classical Studies has launched a pilot scheme to help tackle obesity and social alienation among children from socio-economically deprived areas of the UK. The project, conducted in collaboration with Iris, is coordinated by Dr Aarón Alzola Romero and Dr Lorna Robinson, with the assistance of Julie Ackroyd. Workshops and outdoor activities are currently being held in Oxford, with a view to expanding to other areas of the UK in the future. See the project's website for further information and images.
Henry Stead, a PhD candidate in the Department of Classical Studies, has won third prize in the prestigious The Times Stephen Spender Prize 2011, awarded for the original translation of poetry into English. His winning entry is a translation from Latin of an extract of Seneca's powerful tragedy, Medea. One of the judges, Prof Edith Hall, comments: 'As a theatre enthusiast, I was delighted with the taut speakability of Henry Stead’s excerpt from his version of the grim Senecan Medea. I hope that it will encourage others to submit translations from verse drama, a category of translation in which poets such as Ted Hughes and Tony Harrison have recently shown English can be most effective.' Read Henry's winning poem.
The Open University has launched its new interactive website on the Ancient Olympics. This outreach project, which has been overseen by Dr Aarón Alzola Romero of the Department of Classical Studies, aims to bring the ancient Olympics to life in anticipation of London 2012. The site allows users to engage with the history and heritage of the Olympics experientially, through audio, animations, interactive maps and images. The content, which was written in collaboration with various external institutions, is freely available under a Creative Commons licence.
An archaeological excavation at Poggio Colla, the site of a 2,700-year-old Etruscan settlement in Italy’s Mugello Valley, has turned up a surprising and unique find: two images of a woman giving birth to a child. Researchers from the Mugello Valley Archaeological Project, which oversees the Poggio Colla excavation site some 20 miles northeast of Florence, discovered the images on a small fragment from a ceramic vessel that is more than 2,600 years old.
The identification of the scene was made by Dr. Phil Perkins, an authority on Etruscan bucchero and professor of archaeology at The Open University. “We were astounded to see this intimate scene; it must be the earliest representation of childbirth in western art,” said Dr. Perkins. “Etruscan women are usually represented feasting or participating in rituals, or they are goddesses. Now we have to solve the mystery of who she is and who her child is.”
The excavation is a project of Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas, Franklin and Marshall College in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, and the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology, in collaboration with The Open University. Read the full story ...
Prof Phil Perkins appeared on the In our Time programme on The Etruscan Civilisation (29 September 2011). Phil discussed the Etruscans with Melvyn Bragg and other expert guests David Ridgway and Corinna Riva. You can listen to this programme again from the In Our Time website.
Prof Helen King was one of the guests on In Our Time's programme on The Hippocratic Oath (15 September 2011). An expert on ancient medicine, Helen discussed the Hippocratic Corpus with Melvyn Bragg, Vivian Nutton and Peter Portman. This programme is available to listen to again from the In Our Time website.
Please note the MA Classical Studies will be extended by one year. The final presentation of A860 will now be in February 2013, A861's final presentation will now be in February 2014 and A867's final presentation will now be in February 2015.
Our very own Professor Helen King in the Department of Classical Studies has been identified as one of the top two classicists in the Observer's list of Britain's top 300 public intellectuals. In an accompanying article the newspaper considers what makes a public intellectual.
Dr. Amanda Wrigley, who completed her PhD in the Department of Classical Studies in 2009, has won the Philadelphia Constantinidis Essay in Critical Theory Award 2010 for publishing a chapter of her thesis.
Amanda wins a plaque and $1000 for her article ‘A Wartime radio Odyssey: Edward Sackville-West and Benjamin Britten’s The Rescue (1943)’ in the academic journal Radio Journal - International Studies in Broadcast and Audio Media.
The prize is awarded by the Board of the (American) Comparative Drama Conference for ‘the best comparative essay on any aspect and period of Greek drama or theatre published in English in any journal’. Our congratulations go to Amanda.
Elton Barker (Classical Studies) has been awarded one of Google’s Digital Humanities Research Awards for a project entitled Google Ancient Places (GAP): Discovering historic geographical entities in the Google Books corpus. Elton is part of a team which includes Eric C. Kansa (University of California-Berkeley) and Leif Isaksen (Southampton University). The Google award will support 12 university research groups with unrestricted grants for one year. Find out more about the awards.
In October 2005 a group of AA309 students, working with OU Associate Lecturer David Jacques, made a potentially significant discovery of a Bronze Age ritual site in Amesbury, Wiltshire. David and his students have continued excavating the site and in September 2009 discovered a likely Romano-British curse, a Bronze Age dagger of a type never discovered before in Britain and Ireland, and commissioned a geophysical survey of the site and pay for carbon dates of the ancient wood found in 2008. David has received an Open University Teaching Award and will use that to support further work on this project. See the Amesbury website for details of the latest finds.
Follow this link for information about upcoming conferences.
This is now available to OU students and tutors from the Studying the Arts website under Classical Studies. You will need to be logged in using your OU computer username.