Classics and the World Today 6 - March 21-22, 2024
‘Under the Empire’s Shadow: Living in Imperial States, Ancient and Modern’
A Discussion with Prof. Sue Alcock (University of Oklahoma) and Prof. Henning Börm (University of Rostock)
Even the most neutral observers of recent global events will not doubt that, as we believe in the vitality of our own democratic political systems, our everyday lives are shaped by the shadow of empire. Perhaps more than ever in our own lifetime, spheres of imperial influence are redrawn by current political and military events. The experiences of empires—those that are deemed gone and those that may appear invisible—is inscribed in the life stories of many living in the Greater Toronto Area or in other parts of the world.
The Classics and the World Today (CaWT) Initiative was founded in order to ask to what extent discussing the world of the Ancient Greek and Roman Mediterranean can contribute to our current society. Its second aim was to foster a community of people interested in the ancient world at UTM, encouraging undergraduate and graduate students, faculty, alumni and the broader public to engage with one another in a convivial setting.
The first events—consisting of public discussions with invited speakers and graduate workshops—were held in March 2017 when we celebrated both the 50th anniversary of the foundation of Erindale College as the predecessor of UTM, and the 50th anniversary of the teaching of Classical Civilization at UTM. Since this first event in 2017, further events have been held (see past events) discussing questions of religious violence, ancient mobility, the use and abuse of the historian Thucydides, the question of local identities, movement and global connections, civil wars and citizen strife in the ancient world, and digital tools for studying Classics. These events have drawn large numbers of visitors not only from within the university, but also from the Peel Region and the Greater Toronto Area. Please visit the ‘Past Events’ page to learn more about previous events.
Within the umbrella of CaWT, we also provide support for undergraduate students to continue studying the ancient Mediterranean beyond the classroom. Students have received bursaries to enhance their undergraduate experience by excavating in Greece, travelling to the sites of Pompeii and Herculaneum, and visiting important museum collections in North America. Please visit this page to learn about options and past experiences.
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