Sunday, March 28, 2004
Here's a nice bit of stuff from the Times-Picayune's coverage of Greece's preparedness for the Olympics:
When the ancient Games were cancelled, there would be a lapse of 14 centuries before the modern Olympics were revived, in 1896, with Athens serving as the obvious host. A merchant prince came up with 1 million drachmas to build a stadium on the outskirts of the city. Greece welcomed teams from the U.S., England, France, Germany, Denmark, Hungry and Switzerland.
While the U.S. won nine of the 12 track and field events, it was a "hometown" boy that became legend. Keep in mind the marathon was named for the ancient run made by a guy named Pheidippides, from the city of Marathon to Athens, bringing news of a military victory. The distance was a little more than 26 miles.
In 1896, the Marathon was contested over the journey traveled by Pheidippides, and what do you know? Down the stretch he came, Spiridon Loues, a tiny shepherd from the hills, running, he said, "for the glory of Greece."
As he neared the stadium, he received a royal escort, a prince running along with him on either side. The stadium exploded. Then came the spoils of victory: free shaves, free food, free clothes, all for a lifetime.
When they run the marathon over the same course to climax this year's Games, NBC will revive the Loues legend in living color, framed probably by the time-stained pillars of the Parthenon, by the ruins of the Acropolis, by a return to the classics.
Let's say one thing: NBC will not lack for storylines or scenery. [more]
PREVIEW: The Ides
The Ides is a student film by some folks at Trinity about something you can probably guess. The news release sounds interesting and includes a downloadable trailer. Worth a look.
LUDI: You are No Longer Welcome in the Homer Reading Group
Robert Greaves, of Suite 101's Ancient Biographies fame passed along this parody from the Onion ... can't say I know any profs like this, but the potential is there I suppose.
JOURNAL: Didaskalia 6.1 (Spring 2004)
Freddy Decreus Classics and Its Position in Future Cultural Politics
Pat Easterling Ancient Drama in Performance
Lorna Hardwick Gathering and Analysing Information: Gaps in the Evidence and Its Interpretation
Fiona Macintosh Current and Future Developments in the Performance Reception of Ancient Drama
Alan H. Sommerstein CADRE: the Centre for Drama and Its Reception
Angie Varakis Research on the Ancient Mask
+ reviews and a couple of editorials. Access full text via the issue's contents page.
TTT: Calvin Coolidge ... Classicist
Not sure how long this has been up (Google just informed me of its existence earlier this week), but William Harris has reproduced Calvin Coolidge's address to Second Annual Meeting of the American Classical League back in 1921. Here's the conclusion:
We believe in our Republic. We believe in the principles of democracy. We believe in liberty. We believe in liberty under the established provisions of law. We believe in the promotion of literature and the arts. We believe in the righteous authority of organized government. We believe in patriotism. These beliefs must be supported and strengthened. They are not to be inquired of for gain and profit, though without them all gain and all profit would pass away. They will not be found in the teachings devoted exclusively to commercialism though without them commerce would not exist. These are the higher things of life. Their teaching has come to us from the classics. If they are to be maintained they will find their support in the institutions of the liberal arts. When we are drawing away from them, we are drawing away from the path of security and progress. It is not yet possible that instruction in the classics could be the portion of every American. That opportunity ought to be not diminished but increased. But while every American has not had and may not have that privilege, America has had it. Our leadership has been directed in accordance with these ideals. Our faith is in them still
We have seen many periods which tried the soul of our Republic. We shall see many more. There will be times when efforts will be great and profits will vanish. There have been and will be times when the people will be called upon to make great sacrifices for their country. Unless Americans shall continue to live in something more than the present, to be moved by something more than material gains, they will not be able to respond to these requirements and they will go down as other peoples have gone down before some nation possessed of a greater moral force. The will to endure is not the creation of a moment, it is the result of long training. That will has been our possession up to the present hour. By its exercise we have prospered and brought forth many wonderful works. The object of our education is to continue us in this great power. That power depends on our ideals. The great and unfailing source of that power and these ideals has been the influence of the classics of Greece and Rome. Those who believe in America, in her language, her arts, her literature and in her science, will seek to perpetuate them by perpetuating the education which has produced them.
plus ca change and all that ...
BULLETIN BOARD UPDATE
Items added this week ...
On the Events page ...
CONF: Language, Power and Politics.
CONF: Performing Civic Identity
CONF: Local Knowledge and Microidentities in the Roman East
CONF: WAR, CULTURE AND HUMANITY FROM ANCIENT TO MODERN TIMES
CFP: THEORETICAL AND ANTHROPOLOGICAL APPROACHES TO NEAR EASTERN AND EAST MEDITERRANEAN ART AND ARCHAEOLOGY
The UNB Ancient History Colloquium for 2004 has been cancelled. The
organizers apologize for any inconvenience this might cause.
On the Jobs page ...
Mount Allison: Generalist (one year)
University of Haifa: Underwater Archaeology (rank and track open)
Princeton University: Curator of Numismatics: Department of Rare Books and Special Collections
On the Miscellaneous page ...
New Journal: Studies in Greek Early Iron Age Archaeology
AWOTV: On TV Today
6.00 p.m.|DISCU| Seven Wonders of Ancient Rome
Recreate these spectacular, awe-inspiring monuments. The men who
envisioned the Pantheon, the Aqueducts of Rome, the Via Appia, the
Baths of Caracalla, Trajan's Markets, Circus Maximus and the
Colosseum created the epitome of human achievement.
6.00 p.m. |HINT| The Great Empire: Rome: The Enduring Legacy
The final episode reveals the birth of Christianity and how this
religion that the emperors initially tried to destroy ultimately
passed on the empire's legacy. Highlights include: the crucifixion of
Jesus; religious persecutions; rise of Constantine, the first emperor
to embrace Christianity; and Justinian, Rome's last emperor.
7.00 p.m. |HINT| Lost Civilizations: Aegean: Legacy of Atlantis
This episode of the Emmy Award-winning series explores ancient
civilizations that spread through the Aegean Sea and searches for
historical roots of some of Western civilization's oldest legends,
including an examination of ruins on the Greek Island of Thera for
the basis of the Atlantis legend. On Crete, the Greek mainland, and
Turkey, we follow the trail of clues that leads from ancient myths to
evidence of the Trojan War, Trojan Horse, Minoan civilization, and
the Minotaur. Sam Waterston narrates.
7.00 p.m.|DISCU| Colosseum: A Gladiator's Story
In ancient Rome, Verus fights his way out of slavery to train as a
gladiator. He is chosen to fight in the inaugural games at an
extraordinary amphitheatre. The games of the Colosseum involved
killing and torture and they lasted for hundreds of years.