Aspects of Antiquity Lecture Series

The Aspects of Antiquity Lecture Series is one of UNE's most active public lecture series. Founded in 1992, each year it attracts distinguished national and international scholars to provide stimulating talks on the history, literature, thought, material culture, and reception of the civilisations of the Ancient Mediterranean. Visiting scholars usually present an evening talk at the Aspects of Antiquity Lecture Series followed by a morning lecture at the Humanities Seminar Series. The Aspects of Antiquity Lecture Series is sponsored by the UNE Alumni Association and the School of Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences.

These lectures are free of charge and open to the public.

Past lectures

2010 - 2017


The 2017 AAIA Visiting Professor

Thursday September 21st

From Emblem to Epic: Mycenaean art and Mycenaean society Professor James C. Wright, Director of the American School of Classical Studies at Athens (2012-2017), will be the 2017 AAIA Visiting Professor. Professor Wright was previously based at Bryn Mawr College, Pennsylvania, where he has taught since 1978. From 1981 until today he has been Director of the Nemea Project, which focuses on the diachronic history and archaeology of the region surrounding the Sanctuary of Zeus in the north-east Peloponnese. He has excavated widely, including at Kommos on Crete and at Corinth, and is a specialist in the Greek Bronze Age, with a particular interest in the Mycenaeans in the Peloponnese. He is well known for his edited volume "The Mycenaean Feast".

Wright’s primary research is in the evolution of complex societies in the Aegean. This grew out of interests in architecture and urbanism, and led him to explore the social aspects of community formation and maintenance - subjects such as prestige display, mortuary customs, and feasting. He has had a long interest in ancient Greek architecture, especially as it informed the development of ancient communities and their sanctuaries, the regional character of ancient Greece, and the spread of Hellenic culture.


2016 Public Lecture Program


The Human Victims of Pompeii

Dr Estelle Lazer, Forensic Archaeologist, University of Sydney

Thursday, August 4th

Lost Lives Revealed: The Pompeian Casts Project

Dr Estelle Lazer

Dr Estelle Lazer

Forensic Archaeologist, University of Sydney

Thursday, August 4th, 5:00pm
Arts Building (E11) Lecture Theatre 1

Professor Kartja Sporn

Classical Greek Grave Reliefs Beyond Attica.  Mirrors of Ancient Societies

Professor Katja Sporn

Classical Archaeologist, The German Archaeological Institute in Athens

Thursday, August 11th

The Influence of Greek Sculpture on American Tombstones

Professor John Oakley
Chancellor Professor and Forrest D. Murden Jr. Professor
Department of Classical Studies
College of William and Mary in Virginia

Thursday, September 10th, 4:30pm
Arts Building (E11) Lecture Theatre 2

How Caesar Made Britain an Island

Professor Kai Broderson
Professor of Ancient Cultures (Classics)
University of Erfurt

Monday, May 18th, 5:30pm
Arts Building (E11) Lecture Theatre 2

Strangers at Home: The Give and Take of Life in the Borderlands of Judah

Professor Ron Tappy
G. Albert Shoemaker Professor of Bible and Archaeology
Pittsburgh Theological Seminary

Thursday, May 14th, 5:30pm
Education Building (E07) Lecture Theatre 111

Carol Meyers, Mary Grace Wilson Professor in Religion, Duke University, North Carolina
20 March 'Mosaics and Multiculturalism: discoveries at Ancient Sepphoris'
Eric Meyers, Bernice & Morton Lerner Professor of Religion, Director of the Centre for Jewish Studies, Duke University, North Carolina
21 March 'The Challenge of Hellenism and the rise of early Judaism and Christianity'
Andrew McCarthy, Director of the Cyprus American Archaeological Research Institute (CAARI)
1 September 'Prehistoric Prasteio Mesorotsos, Cyprus: Continuity, conservatism and the role of the Cyprus American Archaeological Research Institute'
Alistair Blanshard, Paul Eliadis Chair of Classics & Ancient History History, University of Queensland
4 September 'The Pursuit of Beauty in Ancient Greece'
5 September 'The Archaeology of Athenian Lawcourt'
Nicholas Purcell, Camden Professor Ancient History, Brasenose College, Oxford University
25 September 'The Strangeness of Buying and Selling in the Greek and Roman Worlds'
Emily Kearns, Professor of Classics, St Hilda's College, Oxford University
26 September 'The poets and the Gods: disbelief, piety and literary criticism in archaic and classical Greece'
Wayne Horowitz, Professor of Assyriology, Hebrew University of Jerusalem
4 October "All about rainbows: an Ancient Near Eastern view of the rainbow of the flood"
3 October "Seeing gods in the sky: Astronomy, astrology, and cultural identity in the Ancient Near East and beyond"
Angelos Chaniotis, Professor of Ancient History and Classics, Princeton University
16 August "Ancient Greece after sunset: histories, archaeologies, and perceptions of the night"
15 August "No way to treat a statue! Interaction with statues in the Greek world"
Judy Powell, University of Queensland
2 August "Just a good story: writing the lives of Jim and Eve Stewart"
1 August Book Launch: "Love's Obsession: The Lives and Archaeology of Jim and Eve Stewart"
Peter Artz-Grabner, Associate Professor of Papyrology, University of Salzburg
19 July "What do the papyri from Egypt tell us about the life of Jesus of Nazareth?"
18 July "Neither a truant nor a fugitive: the sale of slaves in Roman Egypt and other provinces"
Elizabeth Thompson, Macquarie University
7 March "The old kingdom tombs at Tehna in Upper Egypt"
Bronwyn Hopwood, Lecturer in Classics and Ancient History, University of New England
21 September "What's in a name? Appian and the nomenclature of Oktaouios Kaisar"
Paul Roche, Senior Lecturer in Latin, University of Sydney
20 September "Lucan's Supernatural"
Catherine Morgan, Professor of Archaeology, King's, University of London, and Director of the British School at Athens
10 August "Pindar and Corinth"
9 August "Why did the early Greeks build temples?"
Mark Golden, Professor of Classics, University of Winnipeg
13 July "Children in Latin Literature"
12 July "Greek games and gladiators"
Pamela Gaber, Professor of Archaeology and Religion at Lycoming College, PA
27 April "Recent excavations at Idalion, Cyprus: new light on Levantine cult in the first millennium BCE"
William Dever, Distinguished Professor of Near Eastern Archaeology, Lycoming College, PA
26 April "The golden age of Solomon: fact or fiction"
Chris Davey, Director, Australian Institute of Archaeology, Melbourne
26 August "Jim Stewart and Walter Beasley: the beginnings of Near Eastern Archaeology in Australia"
25 August "John Garstang and Walter Beasley, and the foundation of the Australian Institute of Archaeology"
Jack Davis, Carl W. Blegen Professor of Greek Archaeology, University of Cincinnati
12 August "Dateline 1180 BC: The Palace of Nestor after the collapse of Mycenaean society"
11 August "Reconstructing an iconographical program of the Palace of Nestor at Pylos: New wall-paintings and their interpretation"
Timothy Harrison, University of Toronto
17 May "The Battle for Armageddon: David, Solomon and the early Israelite Monarchy as viewed from Megiddo"
16 May "Temples, Tablets and Assyrian Imperialism at Tayinat on the Orontes"
Randall Pogorzelski, Charles Tesoriero Lecturer in Latin, University of New England
8 April " Orbis Romanus : Lucan and the Limits of the Roman World"
7 April "Tyrants and Terrorists: Cacus and political identity in Virgil's  Aeneid  and Joyce's  Ulysses "
Thomas Davis, Director of the Cyprus-American Archaeological Research Institute, Nicosia
3 September "An amateur's dream: George McFadden and the excavation of Kourion Cyprus"
2 September "The rise and fall of Biblical Archaeology: towards a new paradigm"
Robert Laffineur, Professor of Archaeology, University of Liège
27 August "Mycenaean iconography as symbolic expression and status indicator"
26 August "Polychrysos Mykene – Mycenae rich in gold: Greek goldwork and jewellery in the Late Bronze Age Aegean"
Andreas Mehl, Professor of Ancient History, Martin Luther University of Halle-Wittenberg
5 March "How the Romans recorded, remembered, thought about and used their past"

2000 - 2009

Professor E.A. Judge, Macquarie University
30 July "The puzzle of Christian presence in Egypt before Constantine (and its link with Classics and Ancient History at UNE"
Alexander Weiss, Junior Professor in Ancient History, University of Leipzig
13 March "The earliest Christian chronicle? A new Leipzig papyrus"
12 March "The invention of a myth in Sallust: the African history account of King Hempsal II of Numidia "
Graeme Bourke, University of New England
24 October "Sparta and Olympia: sport, religion and politics in the Classical Peloponnese"
22 October "The statue of Zeus at Olympia and the  polis  of the Eleians"
François Lissarrague, Director of the Centre Louis Gernet, Paris
8 August "Figuring the gods in Ancient Greece: the relations of anthropomorphism and  'aniconism' "
7 August "Images and ritual in Ancient Greece"
Alexander Weiss, Junior Professor in Ancient History, University of Leipzig
1 August "Sergius Paullus, Dionysius the Areopagite and Erastus the city treasurer: three early Christian Roman elite"
31 July "Consuls, curators and city councillors among the early Christians, AD I-III"
Pamela Watson, Post-Doctoral Research Fellow, Heritage Futures Research Centre, UNE
29 November "Pella in Jordan: The archaeology of a city in its landscape"
Wolf-Dietrich Niemeier, Director, The German Archaeological Institute at Athens
17 August "New light on the Greek 'Dark Age': cult continuity in sanctuaries at Miletus and Kalapodi"
16 August "The kouros of the sacred gate: new finds of Archaic marble statues in the Kerameikos at Athens"
Erich Hamer, Department of Classics, Columbia University
2 August " Divini elementa poetae : on  'Young Vergil's' poetry"
Josiah Ober, David Magie Professor of Classics, and Professor of Human Values, Princeton University
30 June "What makes democracy productive? Networks and knowledge"
29 June "From Tellus to Themistocles (via Lydia). Herodotus on happiness, information, and decision-making"
John Penwill, Senior Lecturer in Humanities, LaTrobe University, Bendigo
25 May "Writing the Memmiad: didactic personae in the  De Rerum Natura  of Lucretius"
25 May "Classical themes in Shakespeare's  A Midsummer Night's Dream "
Richard Seaford, Professor of Ancient Greek Literature, University of Exeter
3 March "Money and the genesis of philosophy"
2 March "Sacred sex and tragic space"
Nota Kourou, Professor of Early Iron Age Aegean Archaeology, University of Athens
5 August "Early iron age open-air sanctuaries in the Aegean: continuity and break"
4 August "The bull and the mistress: continuity and changes in Greek religious practices"
Chris Mackie, Associate Professor, Centre for Classics and Archaeology, University of Melbourne
17 June "The earliest Philoctetes in Greek myth and literature"
16 June "The first sack of Troy"
John Moorhead, McCaughey Professor of History, University of Queensland
29 April "How to become Pope in Late Antiquity"
28 April "Approaching books in Late Antiquity"
Peter Wilson, Professor of Classics, University of Sydney
22 October "Some tragic musicians"
21 October "Musical politics, political music: the power of music in Early Greece"
Marc Waelkens, Buert-Hofman Professor of Eastern Mediterranean Archaeology, Katholicke Universiteit, Leuven
5 October "Sagalassos. Fifteen years of interdisciplinary research in and around the metropolis of the Western Taurus Range"
5 October "The Romanisation of Pisidia"
Alan Millard, Emeritus Professor, University of Liverpool
20 August "History writing before Herodotus"
19 August "Reading and writing in the Time of Jesus"
Shadi Bartsch, Professor at the University of Chicago
12 July "Vision, Sexuality, and Self-Knowledge in Classical Antiquity"
Robert Milns, Professor of Classics and Ancient History, University of Queensland
12 September "Greek science and the Nile flood"
11 September "Alexander the Great in Western Art"
Samuel Lieu, Professor of Ancient History, Macquarie University
22 August "Manichaean Art"
21 August "Pagans, Jews and Christians at Dura Europos"
Rosalie David, Professor, Keeper of Egyptology, The Manchester Museum
8 August "Ancient Egyptian Mummies: the scientific investigation of death, disease and everyday life"
7 August "Medicine and magic in ancient Egypt"
Elizabeth Baynham, Classics, University of Newcastle
20 September "Alexander the Great and the Sun King"
Brian Bosworth, Professor of Classics and Ancient History, University of Western Australia
19 September "Neither unspeakable nor uneatable. Some aspects of hunting in antiquity"
Kathleen Coleman, Professor of Latin, Harvard University
3 September "Spectacular difficulties: textual and interpretive problems in Martial,  Liber Spectaculorum "
2 September "The virtues of violence: gladiators, the arena, and the Roman system of values"
Graeme Clarke, Emeritus Professor, Australian National University
23 August "From scroll to codex: the changing shape of the ancient book"
22 August "Shash Hamdan Tomb 1"
Richard Hunter, Regius Professor of Greek, University of Cambridge
16 July "Fictional anxieties: telling tales in the ancient novel"
Tessa Rajak, Reader in Classics, University of Reading
7 May "Josephus as a writer of the Jewish diaspora"
6 May "Power and subversion in the Greek Bible"
Andrew Stewart, Professor, University of California at Berkeley
19 September "A Greek city in Israel: New discoveries at Dor" 
Tom Stevenson, Department of Classics and Ancient History, University of Auckland
31 August "The speech of Camillus in Livy 5.49-55"
30 August "The arch of Constantine: a reassessment"
Martin Stone, Department of Ancient History, University of Sydney
17 August "Sallust and the Cardinal Virtues"
David Frankel, Reader in Archaeology, LaTrobe University
12 July "A decade of excavations at Bronze Age Marki in Cyprus"
Max Wilcox, Professor, Honorary Assoc. of Classics, History & Religion, UNE
2 November "The dead sea scrolls: the present state of our knowledge" 
John Camp, Professor, American School of Classical Studies, Athens
13 October "The sanctuary of Artemis at Brauron"
12 October "The Athenian Agora and the origins of Democracy"
Tim Dawson, University of New England
25 May "Squander on your back. An outline of fashion in the Near East from Late Antiquity to the Crusades"

1992 - 1999

Philip Hardie, University Reader in Latin Literature, University of Cambridge
27 October "Pygmalion complexes: Ovid's song of Orpheus and Jean-Léon Gérôme"
Alan Shapiro, Professor of Classics at John Hopkins University in Baltimore
10 August "The Children of Athena: gender ideology in the archaeological record"
9 August "The Judgement of Helen in Athenian Art"
Stephen Mitchell, Professor, University of Wales, Swansea
6 August "Hadrian in the East: a study in religion and politics"
22 July "Romans, Jews, and the origins of Christianity"
John Yardley, Professor, Department of Classics, University of Ottawa
24 July "Lost Causes in Greek Myth"
Hermann Kienast, Professor, Director of the German Archaeological Institute in Athens
29 August "The Water Tunnel of Eupalinos at Samos"
28 August "Monumental Architecture in the Archaic Heraeum of Samos"
Erika Simon, Professor of Classical Archaeology, University of Würzburg
29 August "Odysseus"
29 August "Theban Myths in Etruria"
Kurt Raaflaub, Professor, Brown University, Joint Director of the Centre for Hellenic Studies
30 July "Born to be Wolves? Origins of Roman Imperialism"
Deborah Boedeker, Professor, Brown University, Joint Director of the Centre for Hellenic Studies
18 July "Nets and Veils: Women in the Theatre of Dionysos"
Dimitri Michaelides, Professor, Archaeological Research Institute, University of Cyprus, Nicosia
2 April "Roman Cyprus"
1 April "Mosaics in Hellenistic and Roman Cyprus"
Spyros Iakovides, Professor, Former Chair of Prehistoric Archaeology, University of Athens
24 March "The Citadel of Mycenae"
23 March "The Mycenaean Fortress of Gla"
Professor Helmut Kyrieleis
21 March "The German Excavations at Olympia"
Professor Kevin Lee
28 October "What Made the Ancient Greeks Laugh?"
Emeritus Professor Nicholas Hammond
10 September "Research on Ancient Macedonia in Modern Times: an Overview"