CFP: “Res Difficiles: A Conference On Challenges and Pathways for Addressing Inequity” (March 27th 2020, UMW)

Res Difficiles:  A Conference On
Challenges and Pathways for Addressing Inequity 
In the Ancient Greek and Roman World


Organizers: Hannah Čulík-Baird (Boston University) and Joseph Romero (University of Mary Washington)
Date: March 27, 2020
Place: Campus of the University of Mary Washington (Fredericksburg, Virginia), HCC 136


One of the great benefits of the shift from a pedagogue-centered to a student-aware or student-centered classroom is that we listen more attentively to how our students experience the content of what we read.  A decided strength of Classical Studies is the simultaneous proximity and distance—temporally, geographically, ideologically—of the ancient Greek and Roman world. That distance is felt more keenly when potentially difficult subjects (res difficiles) in our readings—domination, inequity, violence both sexual and otherwise—present themselves for inspection. Often the underlying source of the dissonance or disconnect is the distance in our perceptions of social justice. 

 In a conference held on the campus of the University of Mary Washington (Fredericksburg, Virginia), we examine the challenges presented by this curriculum with students who are increasingly more diverse in gender identity, race, ethnicity, income, family structure, and more. We invite contributions from professors, graduate students, teachers, activists, and any interested in the issues under discussion. And while the society of our conference will examine pedagogical issues, we hope also to dilate outward to broader issues in education and society from (a) the current and future roles of Classics and the humanities in K-12 and higher education to (b) the ultimate goals of education.

 Our keynote speaker will be Dani Bostick (@danibostick) who teaches Latin in Winchester, VA, and who has garnered a national reputation as a writer, teacher, and advocate for victims of sexual violence.  Learn more at

 We hope the conference will be attended by as many as possible in person, but a number (limited only by our subscription capacity), will be able to attend digitally. With the permission of the individual presenters, the proceedings of the conference will be live-tweeted on the conference hashtag (#resdiff).

 Abstracts of 350 words should be sent electronically to Joseph Romero ( by November 1, 2019.  Papers will be 20-25 minutes long with coordinated discussion at the end of each session.  Any questions regarding abstract submission may be addressed to Professor Romero or Professor Čulík-Baird ( For more information see the conference website (


CAAS Workshop — Beyond Content Warnings: Sexual Violence in the Secondary and Post-Secondary Classroom Workshop

Saturday, October 12, 8:00am-10am at the 2019 Annual Meeting of the Classical Association of the Atlantic States in Silver Spring, MD.

Organized by David Wright and Dani Bostick


As the #MeToo movement has recently shown in an unprecedented way, sexual violence is everywhere in our world. Despite its prevalence, the topic of sexual violence is often rendered invisible in the classroom. The invisibility of sexual violence in the classics classroom is problematic since it obscures a common theme in ancient world and reinforces the cultural dynamics that contribute to the underreporting and normalization of sexual violence. This workshop will gather educators of all levels to address these topics.


Sexual violence is omnipresent in ancient literature and history, from the rape of the Thetis to the rape of the Sabine women. Sometimes ancient texts will sidestep discussion of the rape by calling it an “abduction” or by using a euphemism (γάμος can also indicate rape). Other times, instructors will internalize ancient ideas about rape and downplay the significance of this sexual violence: “The rape of the Sabine women wasn’t really rape.” Or instructors will fail to acknowledge the complex power dynamics of situations like sexual relationships between enslavers and the enslaved. Text books and commentaries often fail in this regard as well. Figures like Leda, Europa, and Io are considered Zeus/Jupiter’s “lovers.” Translators often use terms like “ravish” or render rape scenes consensual (McCarter 2018). There is also a lot of victim blaming in antiquity (e.g., Hdt. 1.4) or claiming that women are “liars” (as in the myth of Phaedra); These harmful and untrue narratives are repeated in contemporary rape culture. In reality, only 8% of rape claim are found out to be false. If these topics are not properly addressed, it could lead to students internalizing these regressive ideas about consent.


There are many reasons teachers prefer to avoid conversations about sexual violence in the classroom. For starters, sexual violence is a highly-stigmatized, uncomfortable topic. Few other types of trauma are cloaked in such frequent silence. The average age of disclosure for child sexual abuse, for example, is 52. Many survivors of this type of abuse and other forms of sexual violence never disclose. Educators also avoid this topic out of fear. Coverage of trigger warnings invariably includes the message — overt or implied — that discussing traumatic situations can harm students and make them so uncomfortable that they need to leave the classroom. Teachers of secondary students may worry that parents or administrators will complain or that these discussions are outside the bounds of their curriculum.
It is important for educators to be able to navigate this topic effectively since it is so prevalent in ancient history, literature, and art, and sexual violence and the abuse of power at its root are already familiar realities for many students because of personal experience, social media, news, and other modern rape narratives. It is also crucial for educators to be aware of the range of experiences: classrooms will be comprised of victims, perpetrators, and bystanders. Instructors need to make sure they do not reinforce harmful narratives of perpetrators and bystanders while simultaneously creating a safe environment for victims. Talking about sexual violence can help provide students a context while providing a deeper understanding of the ancient world.

The purpose of this workshop to equip attendees with tools for teachers of high school and college students to talk about this aspect of ancient art and literature in the classroom safely and effectively.


Topics will include: basic considerations & background on trauma/sexual violence (how to keep the conversation safe); inadequacy or harmful nature of materials; comparanda of practices from other disciplines; and the value and effective implementation of content warnings.



Select Bibliography

Beek, E.A. 2016. “Ovid’s Afterlives: Mythical Rapes and Rape Myths,” Eidolon.

Hong, Y. 2013. “Teaching Rape Texts in Classical Literature,” Classical World 106.4: 669-667.

James, S. 2014. “Talking Rape in the Classics Classroom: Further Thoughts,” From Abortion to

            Pederasty: Addressing Difficult Topics in the Classics Classroom (Ohio State University       Press), 171-182.

McCarter, S. 2018. “Rape, Lost in Translation,” Electric Literature.

Richlin, A. 1992. “Reading Ovid’s Rapes,” in Pornography and Representation in Greece and

Rome (Oxford University Press), 158-179.

Thakur, S. 2014. “Challenges in Teaching Sexual Violence and Rape: A Male Perspective,” in

From Abortion to Pederasty: Addressing Difficult Topics in the Classics Classroom

(Ohio State University Press), 152-170.



Petition to CAMWS Leadership around the Proposed BYU 2023 Meeting

Dear President Faulkner and members of the Executive Committee,

We write to express our dismay at the CAMWS Executive Committee’s decision to hold the 2023 annual meeting at Brigham Young University. We call on you to reverse this decision.

Many of us are current or former CAMWS members.  But all of us in the profession are united in our conviction that our discipline’s professional meetings must be places where everyone feels welcome and safe.  CAMWS embraces this value, too, stating at the very top of its Code of Conduct that: “We are committed to providing a safe, productive, and welcoming environment for all who participate in our meetings.”  But BYU, because of its policies and practices, cannot provide a welcoming environment for LGBTQ+ individuals.

We urge you to do the right thing.  Commit to holding all 2023 conference events at an off-campus venue (as we previously requested) and announce such plans soon, so that all your members can be confident that CAMWS has a place for them.


Please scroll down to add your name to the petition

Note to signatories: thanks for signing this petition!  We also encourage you to do some or all of the following:

  • Write an individual letter of concern to the CAMWS president, Andrew Faulkner ( and — you could use the text of this petition as a model, or talk about how disappointed you are about the direction CAMWS is going based on your past positive CAMWS experiences, etc. If you are a member of CAMWS, please mention that in your letter.
  • Ask your department or chair to write such a letter or issue a public statement
  • Ask your department to cancel its institutional membership in CAMWS
  • Resign your committee membership or other position in CAMWS
  • Read and share this graduate student petition (and sign it, if you are a graduate student)

We appreciate your standing with us in solidarity!


Amy Pistone University of Notre Dame
Mark Masterson
Senior Lecture of Classics, Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand
Nancy S. Rabinowitz
Hamilton College, Professor of Comparative Literature
Sarah Levin-Richardson
Assistant Prof. of Classics, U of Washington, LCC Co-chair
Deborah Kamen
Associate Professor of Classics, University of Washington
Dr. Daniel Libatique, Ph.D.
Eric Beckman Indiana University
Brett M. Rogers
Associate Professor of Classics, Board Member in Gender & Queer Studies, University of Puget Sound
Jeremy Swist University of Iowa
Jerise Fogel
Classics and Humanities Dept, Montclair State University
Joy E. Reeber University of Arkansas
Chatles Platter
Professor of Classics, University of Georgia
Arum Park
Assistant Professor, University of Arizona
Rebecca Karl Professor NYU
Alicia Matz Boston University
Diane Arnson Svarlien Independent
Nathan S. Dennis
Assistant Professor of Art History and Museum Studies, University of San Francisco
Kathryn Topper University of Washington
Darcy Krasne Columbia University
Marina Haworth
North Hennepin Community College
Jeffrey A. Becker
Binghamton University – SUNY
Cassandra Casias
Rhodora G. Vennarucci University of Arkansas
Sarah Culpepper Stroup
Associate Professor, Classics, University of Washington Seattle
Sarah Brucia Breitenfeld
Graduate student at the University of Washington
Preston Bannard
Sally Winchester retired classicist
Evan Jewell Columbia University
Jacquelyn Clements Getty Research Institute
Richard Thomas Harvard University
Jorge J Bravo III
Associate Professor of Classics, University of Maryland
Aaron Poochigian
Donna Zuckerberg
Ruby Blondell University of Washington
Seth L. Schein
Professor Emeritus, University of California, Davis
Jonathan W Miller
Erika Weiberg Florida State University
Judith P Hallett
University of Maryland, College Park
Bruce M. King Gallatin/NYU
Alexander Kirichenko
Humboldt University, Berlin
Zoé Elise Thomas
University of Texas at Austin
Joel P. Christensen Brandeis University
James Uden
Associate Professor, Boston University
Hannah Culik-Baird
Danielle La Londe
Assistant Professor of Classical Studies, Centre College
Emily Jusino
Kristina Killgrove, PhD, RPA
Dept of Anthropology, UNC Chapel Hill
Rachel Lesser
Assistant Professor, Gettysburg College
Rebecca Kennedy—CAMWS member since 2002
Zachary Herz
Assistant Professor of Classics, University of Colorado Boulder
Kristen Ehrhardt
Associate Professor, John Carroll University
Alex Dressler
Associate Professor, University of Wisconsin – Madison
Angela Ziskowski
Associate Professor of History
John Dugan University at Buffalo
Lauri Reitzammer
Associate Professor, University of Colorado, Boulder
Katherine R. De Boer Xavier University
Sara Ahbel-Rappe
Professor of Greek and Latin University of Michigan Ann Arbor
Evelyn Adkins
Joseph Burkhart St. Olaf College
Alison Traweek
Ian Nurmi Boston University
Prudence Jones
Professor, Montclair State University
Catherine Chase
Graduate Student, University of Washington
Lauren Curtis Bard College
Clara Bosak-Schroeder
Assistant Professor of Classics, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
Janet Mowat
Tara Mulder Vassar College
Justin G
Joseph Sowerby Thomas
MA Classics University of Manchester
Christopher Polt
Assistant Professor, Boston College
Sharon L. James UNC Chapel Hill
Kira Jones Emory University
Lauren Ginsberg
Associate Professor of Classics, University of Cincinnati
T. H. M. Gellar-Goad
Assistant Professor of Classics and Zachary T. Smith Fellow, Wake Forest University
Sheena Finnigan UW-Madison
Danielle Kellogg
Associate Professor of Classics, Brooklyn College CUNY
Jeanne M. Neumann
Davidson College, Professor of Classics
Rachel Hart, Ph.D.
Michael Spires
Jake Sawyer
Graduate Student, University of Colorado, Boulder
Emily Goetz
Stephanie Larson Bucknell University
Jason Nethercut
University of South Florida
Ellen O’Gorman University of Bristol
Jason Nethercut
Assistant Professor of Classics at the University of South Florida
Danielle Martin
Latin Teacher, Seattle Academy of Arts and Sciences
Mathias Hanses Penn State University
Luke Madson
Rutgers (Graduate Student)
Ian Fielding
Assistant Professor of Classical Studies, University of Michigan–Ann Arbor
Ginny Lindzey
Dripping Springs High School
Heather Waddell, Assistant Professor of Greek & Roman Studies
Concordia College – Moorhead, MN
Lucy McInerney
Graduate Student, Brown University
Lisl Walsh
Associate Professor and Chair of Classics, Beloit College, WCC co-chair
Chiara Sulprizio
Senior Lecturer in Classical and Mediterranean Studies, Vanderbilt University
Sarah Blake York University
Sierra Schiano
MA student, University of Colorado, Boulder
Dora Gao
University of British Columbia
Robert Groves
Assistant Professor of Classics, University of Arizona
John M. Oksanish
Assoc. Professor of Classics, Wake Forest
Dr. Debby Sneed
Melissa Bailey Kutner
University of Maryland, Baltimore County
Gina Soter University of Michigan
Daniel P. Diffendale University of Missouri
Kendra Eshleman Boston College
Carol Atack University of Oxford
Ana Maria Guay Graduate Student, UCLA
Shannon DuBois
Matthew Scarborough
Research Associate, Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History
Anna Simas
Thomas L. Salisbury
Nathalie Roy
Glasgow Middle School, Baton Rouge, LA
Julie Levy Boston University
Meghan Kelly
Dani Bostick
Maxwell Paule Earlham College
Barbara Gold
Edward North Professor of Classics Emerita, Hamilton College (and CAMWS member)
Joshua Reno
PhD Candidate, University of Minnesota
Jenn Galczenski
Caitlin Hines Wake Forest University
Lauri Dabbieri Sidwell Friends School
Mark Alonge
Boston University Academy
David J. Wright Fordham University
Stephanie McCarter
Associate Professor of Classics, University of the South, Sewanee
Diana Ng
Jennifer Gerrish College of Charleston
Ronnie Ancona
Hunter College and CUNY Graduate Center
William Duffu Alamo Colleges
Ulrike Krotscheck
The Evergreen State College
Jennifer Luongo
Latin Teacher, St. Andrew’s Episcopal School
Barbara A. Olsen
Associate Professor of Greek and Roman Studies, Vassar College
James J. O’Hara UNC Chapel Hill
Andrew Rist
Norman Sandridge Howard University
Katherine Dennis Princeton University
Leah Himmelhoch
Associate Professor, Hobart & William Smith Colleges
Mark Thatcher Boston College
Jeffrey Henderson Boston University
Hanne Eisenfeld
Assistant Professor, Boston College
Lisa Maurizio Bates College
Caroline Bishop
Assistant Professor, Texas Tech University, member of CAMWS and COGSIP
Deborah Lyons Miami University (Oh)
Derek Counts
Univeristy of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
Rachel Mazzara
Graduate Student, University of Toronto
Leah Himmelhoch
Associate Professor, Hobart & William Smith Colleges
Michael Goyette
Jackie Murray
Assistant Professor, University of Kentucky
Molly Jones-Lewis
Lecturer, University of Maryland, Baltimore County
Sarah E. Bond University of Iowa
Leah Kronenberg Boston University
Tom Hawkins Ohio State University
Katherine Wasdin
Lucy Grinnan
Student, Middlebury College
Rebecca Gaimari undergraduate student
Gregory Hays University of Virginia
John Finamore University of Iowa
Debra Trusty
Lecturer (University of Iowa)
Amy Russell Durham University
Curtis Dozier Vassar College
Jeremy Weiss
Melissa Harl Sellew
Faculty member, University of Minnesota
Diane Rayor
Professor, Grand Valley State University
Caleb Dance
Washington and Lee University
Selena Ross Rutgers University
Lindsey Mazurek
Assistant Professor, University of Oregon
Katherine Harrington
Postdoctoral Fellow, Florida State University
Dan Curley Skidmore College
Lydia Herring-Harrington Tufts University
Kelly P. Dugan University of Georgia
Diana Molkova University of Washington
Peter J. Miller
University of Winnipeg; CAMWS member
Sarah Teets
Postdoctoral Fellow, University of Virginia
Shelley P. Haley Hamilton College
Jonathan MacLellan
Andrew Carroll
Melanie Racette-Campbell
Craig Gibson University of Iowa
Katharine Huemoeller
Assistant Professor, University of British Columbia
Laura Gawlinski
Associate Professor and Chair, Loyola University Chicago / CAMWS member
Elizabeth Neely Ohio State
Jessica Blum
University of San Francisco
Lana Radloff Bishop’s University
Anna Krohn
Janet M. Martin
Associate Professor Emerita, Princeton University
Marcia Lindgren University of Iowa
Jessica Nowlin
The University of Texas at San Antonio
Sheila Dickisono University of Florida
Mik Larsen
California State University, Long Beach
Noah Segal
Graduate Student – UC Santa Barbara
Sasha-Mae Eccleston Brown University
Jeremy LaBuff
Northern Arizona University
Joseph Groves
Laurie Porstner
Graduate Student, Rutgers University
Erin Briggs Agnes Scott College
Erin Moodie
Assistant Professor, Purdue University
Jonathan Young University of Iowa
Andrew Reeber
Samuel Cooper, PhD
Bard High School Early College Queens
Brenda Longfellow University of Iowa
Steven Brandwood Rutgers University
Michael Leese
University of New Hampshire
Hunter Gardner
University of South Carolina
Kathryn Gutzwiller University of Cincinnati
ann suter univ. of rhode island
Alice Gaber
The Ohio State University
Sasha-Mae Eccleston Brown University
Tessa Cavagnero Northwestern University
Michael Arnush Chair, Classics, Skidmore
Robert C. Ketterer
David Malamud
PhD student, Boston University
Anne E. Haeckl
Senior Instructor and Co-Chair, Classics Dept., Kalamazoo College
Victoria University of Wellington
Sinead Brennan-McMahon
University of Auckland, New Zealand
Emily Hauser
Dominic Machado Holy Cross

CFP: “Writing Ancient and Medieval Same-Sex Desire: Goals, Methods, Challenges”

A Call for Papers:
“Writing Ancient and Medieval Same-Sex Desire: Goals, Methods, Challenges”
June 30-July 2, 2020
Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand,-methods,-challenges

This call for papers is for a conference to take place June 30-July 2, 2020 at Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand, on the topic of writing about same-sex desire in ancient and medieval societies.

Derek Krueger (UNC Greensboro), Mark Masterson (Victoria University of Wellington), Nancy Rabinowitz (Hamilton College), and Shaun Tougher (Cardiff University) will be providing  plenary addresses.

For several decades now, scholars have devoted attention to same-sex desire in both ancient times and the centuries that followed. Not surprisingly, there have been vigorous debates over how to go about it. These debates have been framed in various ways. Here are some examples:

  • essentialism VERSUS constructivism;
  • Foucauldian discourse analysis VERSUS approaches inspired by psychoanalysis;
  • (the impossibility of) objective history VERSUS (overly) subjective history;
  • perception of commonalities across time VERSUS rigorously historicizing insistence on the past’s alterity;
  • positivism VERSUS imaginative reconstruction of contemporaneous receptions.

These dichotomies, which are both reductive and don’t exhaust the possibilities, continue to crackle with contention. They also continue to undergird and even disturb current scholarly endeavours.

We are looking for papers (30 minutes in length) in which scholars not only speak about primary source material but also reflect explicitly on the theoretical orientation of their work (see the dichotomies above for examples) and the purpose(s) of (their) scholarship on same-sex desire. An additional objective of this conference will be an edited volume of papers that will aim to showcase a variety of approaches to this important topic.

Please send proposals (c. 500 words) to Mark Masterson ( by 1 December 2019. If you have any questions, please send them to him at this address also.

In your proposal include

  1. the primary source material/historical milieu to be discussed, and
  2. the general theoretical basis of the work

This conference is underwritten by the Marsden Fund/Te Pūtea Rangahau A Marsden of the Royal Society/Te Apārangi of New Zealand