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Call for Papers: 2014 Penn Center for Ancient Studies Graduate Symposium

Call for Papers: 2014 Penn Center for Ancient Studies Graduate Symposium

Deadline for Submission: January 10, 2014

“Views from Below: Outsiders, Masses, and the Margins in Antiquity”

“I hate all that is common,” wrote Callimachus, and scholarship on
antiquity has often been obliged to agree: from palace archaeology and
studies of luxury objects, to studies in political history and
canonical literature, the preponderance of evidence, and so of
interest, has traditionally focused on the highest echelons of
society. We know that most people in the ancient world spent their
lives outside of elite spheres of influence, and many were
deliberately excluded from them. These non-elite cultures may be hard
to find, having little opportunity to leave traces in the literary and
archaeological records.

The goal of this symposium, therefore, is to bring together graduate
students from all disciplines related to the ancient world, broadly
construed, to discuss the non-elite, the popular, the marginalized,
and the commonplace. What people did the elites of the ancient world
consider outsiders? Who considered themselves outsiders? How do we
study the history of people deliberately left out of history? Is it
possible to discover the ‘ordinary’ experience in antiquity? Can we
define ‘popular culture’ or ‘popular politics’ for ancient societies?
What can ‘low’ genres or ‘mediocre’ literature tell us about culture?
In order to effectively deal with these complex issues, submissions
are welcome from graduate students working in such fields as:
Anthropology, Art History, Classics, Linguistics, Archaeology, the
Ancient Near East, Ancient History, Pre-Columbian studies, East Asian
Studies, and Middle Eastern Studies.

Potential topics include, but are not limited to:

– Slavery and the labor class
– Aesthetics of mediocraty and the middlebrow
– Archeology of small sites
– Mass culture, popular movements and uprisings
– Constructions and perceptions of non-elites
– Outsiders in representation, literature and mythology
– Nomads and ethnic minorities and their relations to territorial states
– Subsistence in marginal environments
– Popular and unpopular experiences of the divine

Abstracts of no more than 300 words should be sent, along with your
name, email, and institutional affiliation to ancient@sas.upenn.edu no
later than January 10, 2014. Please also feel free send any questions
to this address.

The conference will begin on Friday evening, March 7th, with a keynote
address by Dr. Jonathan Tenney of Cornell University, followed by a
reception. Sessions for papers of 20 minutes each will follow on
Saturday, March 8th.  All events will be held at the University of
Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology, Philadelphia.

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Egyptology and Archaeology
The latest news from the world of Egyptology, archaeology, and cultural heritage in Egypt from the New Orleans Interest Group of the American Research Center in Egypt. For more news and event announcements, visit us on the web: www.arce-nola.org, Facebook: www.facebook.com/arcenola, Twitter: www.twitter.com/arcenola, and Pinterest: www.pinterest.com/arcenola
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