Rubincam, Catherine

Associate Professor EmeritusClassics

Contact Information

Mailing Address: 
3359 Mississauga Rd., Erindale Hall
City: 
Mississauga
Province: 
Ontario
Postal Code: 
L5L 1C6
Office Hours: 
contact via email
Catherine Rubincam

 

Catherine Rubincam holds a B.A. in Honours Classics from the University of Toronto, a B.A. in Literae Humaniores from Oxford University, and a Ph.D. in Classical Philology from Harvard University. Her publications comprise articles on Greek historiography, focussing on the work of several Greek historians (particularly Herodotus, Thucydides, and Diodorus Siculus), most involving the application of a comparative approach to major generic issues, such as the historian's policy in naming individuals or his practice concerning the use of numbers and quantified information.

She has published 27 articles, including, most recently:

• "The 'rationality' of Herodotus and Thucydides as evidenced by their respective use of numbers", in D. Lateiner and E. Foster (eds.), Thucydides and Herodotus: Connections, Divergences, and Later Reception (Oxford University Press 2012) 97-122

• "The numeric practice of the Hellenica Oxyrhynchia", Mouseion 9 (2009[2012]) 303-329

• "'In the 100th year approximately … ' (Thuc. 8.68.4):  Qualified ordinal statements of time in Greek historical narrative”, Mouseion 8 (2008[2011]) 319-332

• "Thucydides 8.68.4:  A highly unusual numeric statement", The Ancient History Bulletin 22 (2008[2010]) 83-87

• “Herodotus and his descendants:  Numbers in ancient and modern accounts of Xerxes’ campaign”, Harvard Studies in Classical Philology 104 (2008) 93-138.

Her current major project (funded by a series of SSHRC grants) involves the development of a database of all the numbers in the texts of a selection of Ancient Greek historians, as well as a comparable database of numbers in modern narratives of Ancient Greek history. The database (currently being entered into a website, to facilitate access by other scholars) captures a standard set of information on every number in these texts. This coding of information makes it possible to quantify the numeric practice of each text, and thus to compare the numeric profiles of individual works or groups of works. A monograph currently in progress, tentatively entitled, “Quantifying Mentalities: Numbers in Ancient Greek Historiography”, will contain a distillation of the results of this work.

As a member of the University of Toronto’s full-time faculty from 1969 to 2011, she taught undergraduate courses at the Mississauga Campus and graduate courses on the St. George Campus. Her undergraduate teaching included courses at all levels in Greek History, and introductory courses in Graeco-Roman Art and Architecture, and in both Ancient Greek and Latin, as well as pioneering the development of courses in Classical Mythology and in Latin & Greek in Scientific Terminology, which have now become well subscribed staples of the Classical Civilization programmes at both UTM and the St. George Campus. Her graduate teaching included MA courses on Greek Prose Literature and Research Seminars on Greek Historiography.

Administrative service at the University of Toronto included a five-year term as Associate Dean of Humanities at UTM (1993-96 and 1997-99), a year as Interim Chair of Historical Studies at UTM (2003-04), a two-year term as Associate Chair of that department (2008-10), and, most recently, since her official retirement, a six-month term as Director, Teaching & Learning Support and Innovation (Jan.-June 2012).

She served for 25 years on the Editorial Committee of Phoenix, a Journal of the Classical Association of Canada:  as Secretary-Treasurer (1977-83), Review Editor (1983-92), Editor of the journal (1992-97), and of the Phoenix Supplementary Series (1992-2002), and in succession as Vice-President, President, and Past President of the Classical Association of Canada (2000-2006). In 2009 she was honoured by the Classical Association of Canada's Award of Merit.

She also served a three-year term (1999-2002) as a member of a SSHRC adjudication committee for the Standard Research Grant Competition, chairing the committee in the second and third year.

In retirement since Dec. 31, 2011, she continues to do some teaching, alongside her continuing work on the monograph (mentioned above) designed to present an overview of the results from her ‘Numbers in Greek Historiography’ project.

Research

Research Support: 
SSHRC

Other

Specialization: 
Ancient Greek Historiography; Graeco-Roman Images and Ideas
Education: 
Ph.D. (Classical Philology, Harvard University)
B.A. (Literae Humaniores, Oxford University)
B.A. (Honours Classics, University of Toronto)