Research Seminars in Classical Archaeology

Seminars are held on Tuesdays, 3.00-4.30, in the Boardroom of the Centre for Classical and Near Eastern Studies of Australia located on level four of the Madsen Building (on Eastern Avenue opposite the Carslaw Building). CCANESA is at the top of the stairs located directly in front of you when you enter the Madsen Building (i.e. one floor above the level of the main entrance to the building).

2 August
Katia Sporn (DAI Athens), AAIA Visiting Professor
Aigina Kolonna. The Development of a Bronze Age Settlement into a Greek Sanctuary

9 August
Katia Sporn (DAI Athens), AAIA Visiting Professor
Communal Rituals and Religious Acts. Problems of Definition

23 August
Ted Robinson
Geomythology in South Italy. A Xenon Group cup in Geneva

6 September
Honours seminars
Charlotte Kowalski: Colour and Identity in Ancient Greece

Sarah Hawkins: The Amazons in South Italy: Warrior Women on red- figured pottery

13 September
Honours seminars
Rebecca Georgiades: Attic conceptions of the deceased in the afterlife in image and text

Madeline Bowers: Dress and Identity in Minoan Iconography

Meggan Walker: A critical analysis of gendered approaches to funerary, settlement and public space archaeology in the classical world

4 October
Margaret Miller
The disappearance of Persians from 4th century Attic art

18 October
Beatrice McLoughlin
Drawing conclusions: The macroscopic identification of a complex dynamic pottery system at Zagora

Ted Robinson (, 9351 3072)

Download a copy of the programme here

Research Seminars in Classics and Ancient History

Papers are held in the Boardroom of the Centre for Classical and Near Eastern Studies of Australia
in the Madsen Building on Eastern Avenue (at the City Road end), in the University’s Camperdown Campus

Please note the date and day of the week as seminars are often held on different days throughout the semester, Mondays at 12.15 or Thursdays at 4.15, unless otherwise stated.

Thursday 4 August
Prof. Iakovos Vailiou (CUNY) - Plato on Loving Socrates

Monday 8 August Addition to programme
Nancy Worman, Professor of Classics and Comparative Literature at Columbia University (Barnard) - Tragic Viewing and the Body of the Plot in Aristotle's Poetics

Thursday 11 August
Patrick Finglass (University of Nottingham) - Pity in Oedipus the King

Thursday 25 August - Please note time and venue change this week - 6.00pm Eastern Avenue Auditorium

Classics and Ancient History and the Nicholson Museum are co-presenting the following lecture in conjunction with Sydney Ideas:

Dr Estelle Lazer (Sydney) - Stolen Lives: Returning Identities to Pompeian Victims of the AD 79 Eruption

For more information and to register for the lecture please visit the University of Sydney's Events site

Monday 29 August
Nello Sidoti (University of Urbino) - Middle Comedy and the Reperformances of Tragedy in 4th century BC

Thursday 8 September
"Tea for Teachers" event this week replaces seminar

Thursday 15 September
Harrison Rochford (Sydney) - Not ones to myth an opportunity: orators and oracles in Classical Athens

Thursday 22 September
Dr. Brent Nongbri (Macquarie) - Fabricating a Second-Century Codex of the Four Gospels

Thursday 6th October
Jules Flego (University of Sydney) - Theodor Mommsen: The Creation of an Enduring Image of Rome's Past

Monday 17 October
Professor Eric Csapo (Sydney) - Between Democracy and Autocracy: Patterns in the Spread of Theatre through Classical Greece

Monday 24 October
Dr. Robert Cowan (Sydney) - When mothers turn bad … The perversion of the maternal ideal in the fragments of Sophokles

For further information, please contact
Tamara Neal:

Download a copy of the programme here

Research Seminars in Near Eastern Archaeology

Welcome to a new edition of the Near Eastern Seminar Series for Semester 2, 2016. Seminars are held on Mondays in the Boardroom of the Centre for Classical and Near Eastern Studies of Australia located on Level Four of the Madsen Building on Eastern Avenue in the University of Sydney's Camperdown Campus. From this semester they will start at the later time of 4:15pm on Mondays unless otherwise noted; the time has been changed to accommodate faculty staff and encourage a wider audience.

All are welcome.

As of this semester, Ana Becerra will hand over the role of NESS co-ordinator to Michael Spate. If you wish to update your details for the mailing list or have information to circulate around NESS, please contact Michael by emailing him at
CCANESA and the Near Eastern archaeology community would like to thank Ana Becerra for her hard work and professionalism as NESS coordinator over the last three years and we welcome Michael to the role.

Monday 5 September - Honours Research Progress Seminars

Current Honours students will deliver a 20 minute presentation each on their Honours research. Each presentation will be followed by 5-10 minutes question time.

Arabella Cooper: “An In-depth Study of Eye Idols in the 4th Millennium BCE”
Sareeta Zaid: “Ethnicity in Archaeology: A Case for Kirbet Kerak Ware in the Southern Levant”
Michael Everett: “Household Activities in Iron Age Southern Levant"

Download the Honours seminar details here

Tuesday 20 September: Dr Glenn J. Corbett, Associate Director of the American Center of Oriental Research (ACOR), Jordan
Title: "Inscribing the Desert Torrents: What the Distribution of Thamudic Inscriptions Reveals about Life in the Arabian Desert"

Abstract: Thousands of Thamudic E (or Hismaic) inscriptions and rock drawings attest the once vibrant North Arabian culture that thrived in the Hisma Desert of southern Jordan and northwest Saudi Arabia more than 2,000 years ago. But what drew these ancient tribespeople to the mountain slopes and deep wadi interiors where we so often find their names, thoughts, and prayers carved into stone? A GIS-based study of the distribution of more than 800 Hismaic inscriptions from the Wadi Hafir of southern Jordan reveals that authors tended to carve their messages in exactly those places where torrential winter rains would drain, collect, and pool. This presentation, given in honor of the late University of Sydney professor William Jobling who first documented so many of the Hafir’s inscriptions, seeks to understand better the distribution of these artifacts in light of traditional Arabian uses and understandings of desert landscapes and hydrology as attested through archaeology, ethnography, and pre-Islamic poetry.

Dr Corbett is also presenting a public lecture for NEAF on Wednesday 21 September - details on the NEAF website

Monday 17 October: Dr Hayley Saul, University of Western Sydney
"From prehistory to post-earthquake: archaeology and heritage research in a changing Nepal"

Since 2011 the Himalayan Exploration and Archaeological Research Team (HEART) has been actively investigating the early settlement of the Nepalese Himalayas and their role in trans-Himalayan exchange and mobility. This paper narrates the experiences and challenges of conducting fieldwork in a high altitude and seismically unstable landscape. Beginning with an exploration of the evidence for settlement and mobility within and across the Nepalese Himalayas, focusing on the period from 30 kya to the emergence of early states in the 1st millennium BC, the paper moves on to the preliminary (pre)historic findings discovered during fieldwork in the Annapurnas. Though very little archaeological fieldwork has been carried out in the Himalayas of Nepal, this paper reviews the tentative evidence for: 1) the movement of prehistoric exchange items, and; 2) settlement activity and exchange infrastructure.
These narratives of mobility, cultural diversity and sophisticated relationships with the mountain environments always had relevance for Nepal’s emerging identity as a fledgling democratic state as it navigates complex ethic politics and a drive for development. But, following the 2015 earthquakes the role of heritage and archaeology research in Nepal’s development and earthquake recovery has changed, and the work of HEART continues to adapt with it. Using the most recent action research undertaken with the devastated village of Langtang, the paper concludes by observing the challenges ahead: participatory research in traumatic pasts, managing trust in community politics, and navigating the tension between cultural tradition and economic development.

Monday 7 November; Professor Song YiXiao (Central China Normal University)
"The Prototype of Queen Mother of the West and its diffusion in the ancient civilization regions of the world"


Seminar Programme Semester 1, 2016

Classical Archaeology

March 15 - Delivery of papers presented at the Archaeological Institute of America meetings in Jan 2016:
Alba Mazza - Deep-sea shipwreck investigation in Sicily: The Panarea II Shipwreck
Dr Hugh Thomas - From skeletons to sites: the utilisation of drones & photogrammetry for 3D modelling at the Ancient Methone archaeological Project
Ivana Vetta - Slags & Ores: Archaeometallurgy & the Geometric settlement of Zagora

April 5 - Dr Ilaria Orsi (Neuchâtel University & AAIA Apollo Fellow for 2016)
Worship space in Late Bronze Age & Early Iron Age Greece

April 19 - Jennifer Wright
Give it a whorl. The spindle whorl as part of textile manufacture

May 3 - Assoc. Prof. Lesley Beaumont
Defining childhood at Athens & Sparta

May 17 - Meg Dains
Emborio on Chios

May 24 - Emeritus Professor Michael Knight
Water supply & management at Zagora during the 9th and 8th Centuries BC

May 31 - Dr Craig Barker
Beyond the Theatre: Recent investigations of Roman urbanism in Nea Paphos, Cyprus

Enquiries: Associate Professor Lesley A. Beaumont

Tel: 93513790

Download a copy of the programme here

Classics and Ancient History

Thursday, 3rd March 4.15pm
Professor Jan Bremmer (Groningen): Myth & Ritual and the Coming of Age of Heracles

Monday, 7th March 12.15pm
Elisabeth Günther (Freie Universität Berlin): Framing the stage. Olympian gods as an example for interaction and communication on comedy-­-related vases

Thursday, 17th March 4.15pm
Pre-lecture reception before RITCHIE LECTURE by Prof. Jan Bremmer at 7.00pm. Download a copy of the lecture flyer here

Monday, 11th April 12.15pm
Eleanor Cowan (University of Sydney): Contesting Clementia in Tiberian Rome

Monday, 2nd May, 12.15pm
Irene Stone (University of Sydney): Herodotus, ῥήτωρ?

Thursday, 12th May, 4.15pm
Phoebe Garrett (ANU): Childhood in Suetonius

Thursday 26th May, 4.15pm
Alyce Cannon (University of Sydney): Prostheses and Ancient Constructions of Disability

For further information, please contact
Tamara Neal:

Download a copy of the programme here

Near Eastern Archaeology

Monday March 14
Professor Ian Hodder, Stanford University - "Assembling Çatalhöyük: The Role of Interdisciplinary Science"

The Çatalhöyük Project in central Turkey involves 160 researchers working in 36 subdisciplines. This seminar will discuss the ways in which the team works across and between subdisciplines in order to assemble knowledge about this Neolithic site. Examples are provided of the building of robust hypotheses that nevertheless remain embedded in their process of assembling.

This seminar is free and open to all. RSVP would be appreciated for seating arrangements to Ana Becerra at

Monday 21 March Dr Melissa Kennedy (University of Sydney) - “Wadi Hammeh and the North Jordan Valley in the EB III-IV”

Dr Iona Kat McRae (University of Sydney) - “’Royal Tableware’ Along the Persian Road”

Monday 4 April Dr James Fraser (British Museum) - “Dolmens, Settlement and Geology in the East Rift Escarpment in the 4th Millennium BCE”

Dr Amanda Dusting (University of Sydney) - “The Perception of Prestige and Place: The Importance of Merlons”

Monday 11 April Dr Bernadette Drabsch (University of Newcastle) - “Evolving Symbolism: Exploring Continuity and Change in Artistic Representation during the South Levantine Late Chalcolithic and Early Bronze Ages”

Monday 18 April Dr Stephen Bourke (University of Sydney) - “Pella 2015: Urban Origins and Palatial Estates”

Monday 9 May Dr Peter Jia (University of Sydney) - “The New Evidence of the Early Contact: Archaeological Work at the Adunqiaolu Site, Xinjiang, China and Related Discoveries”

Click here to download a copy of the programme.

Seminar Programme Semester 2, 2015

Classical Archaeology

Tuesday 28 July - Prof. David Frankel (Latrobe) - Household archaeology at Marki Alonia
Tuesday 18 August - Prof. John Oakley, AAIA Visiting Professor (William and Mary) - Changing Personalities – What New Attributions Can Tell Us
Tuesday 1 September - Honours students
Jesse Clarke: Haruspicy in Etruria: The transmission of liver divination across the ancient Mediterranean
Prue Newton: Lefkandi - a comparative analysis of the Skoubris, Palaia Perivolia and Toumba cemetery burials
Tuesday 13 October - Kristen Mann - Lives in Ruins: the material footprint of daily life and social organisation at Zagora on Andros
Tuesday 20 October - Ivana Vetta - Slags and Ores: Preliminary analysis of the Zagora slags
Tuesday 27 October - Steve Vasilakis - The Maritime Cultural Landscape of Prehistoric Chios

Enquiries: Ted Robinson
Tel: 9351 3072
Download a copy of the programme here

Classics and Ancient History

Thursday 6th August, Frances Muecke, University of Sydney –'Biondo and the Roman elections'
Thursday 13th August, Professor David Levene, New York University - Monumental Insignificance: The Absence of Topography from Livy's Rome
Thursday 20th August, Dr Sarah Lawrence, University of Armidale – 'Don't do what I say: The Lessons of Negative exempla'
Thursday 27th August, Professor Irad Malkin, Cummings Chair for Mediterranean History and Culture, Tel Aviv University (Professor Malkin is the guest of The Department of Ancient History, Macquarie University) - ‘Greek colonization: The Right to Return’
Monday 31st August, A/Professor Dexter Hoyos, University of Sydney – ‘The sarcophagal exploits of Scipio Barbatus, cos. 298 BC’
Monday 7th September, Byron Waldron, University of Sydney
Thursday 17th September, Rev. Dr Geoff Dunn, Australian Catholic University - 'Flavius Constantius and Affairs in Gaul: The Evidence of Rutilius Namatianus'
Friday 25th September, Professor Rush Rehm, Professor, Theater and Performance Studies, and Classics Artistic Director, Stanford Repertory Theater - 'Comparative Clytemnestras'
Thursday 8th October, Dr Clemens Koehn, University of Armidale – 'Shooting like the Ancient Romans: Reconstructing and Testing a Roman Torsion Catapult'
Monday 12th October, Dr Ben Brown, University of Sydney – 'Independent Living': the meaning of autonomy in Thucydides
Thursday 22nd October, Dr Pat Watson, University of Sydney – 'Characterisation, stereotyping and individuality in Martial'
Thursday 29th October, Dr Tom Stevenson, University of Queensland - ‘Reception in Novels’

Download a copy of the Semester 2, 2015 programme here

Near Eastern Archaeology

Monday 17 August: James Fraser - "The Kashmir Prehistory Project: A Video Presentation"

Seminar Programme Semester 1, 2015

Classics and Ancient History
Thursday 5th March, 4:15pm - Paul Roche (University of Sydney): Lucan's Supernatural
Thursday 12th March, 4:15pm - Rachael White (University of Oxford): Classics and the political culture of New South Wales in the 19th century
Thursday 19th March, 4:15pm - Thomas Wilson (University of Sydney): Kritias, cultural conflict, and dramatic reception in fifth-century Athens
Thursday 16th April, 4:15pm - Stephen Lake (University of Sydney): A Failed Cultural Transfer: Aspects of the Roman non-appropriation of Greek medicine in the early Christian West
Thursday 30th April, 4:15pm - Peter Wilson (University of Sydney): Dancing for free: Pindar's Kastor-song for Hieron
Thursday 7th May, 4:15pm - David Rafferty (University of Melbourne): habere provinciam: Sortition and provincial assignment in the late Republic
Thursday 14th May, 4:15pm - Tatiana Bur (University of Sydney): Ancient automata and sensory experience
Thursday 21st May, 4:15pm - Ben Ferris (University of Sydney): Jean Cocteau's Orpheus: the cinematic poet?
Thursday 28th May, 4:15pm - Kai Brodersen (University of Erfut): The Power of Gemstones: Anxieties in the Ancient World
Thursday 4th June, 4:15pm - Sheira Cohen (University of Sydney): Space, directionality and movement in Middle Republican Latin

Download a copy of the programme here

Download a copy of the Semester 2, 2015 programme here

Classical Archaeology
Tuesday 10 March - Richard Green: Tragoidia/Goat-Song and the Naming of Tragedy
Tuesday 24 March - Hugh Thomas: Droning On: UAV photography and 3D modelling at Zagora, Methone and the Agora
Tuesday 14 April - Janice Crowley: The Eye, the Mind and the Hand: Seals, Signets and the Artistic Vision of the Minoans
Tuesday 28 April - Beatrice McLoughlin: The technological and visual characterization of thin-walled coarse wares from Zagora: potters, specialization and community needs on Andros in the eighth century B.C.
Tuesday 5 May - Alba Mazza: Coastal landscape archaeology in Sicily: A new approach for study coastal cities and their palaeolandscapes
Tuesday 19 May - Brett Myers: Lucanian Fortified Centres - methodology, survey and some preliminary results
Tuesday 2 June - Tyler Jo Smith (University of Virginia): Questions and Answers: Athenian Black-Figure Pottery from Berezan in the State Hermitage Museum

Download a copy of the Semester 1 programme here

Near Eastern Archaeology

Monday 30th March - No NESS
Monday 6th April - Easter Monday
Monday 13th April - Professor Alison Betts (University of Sydney): Finding Zoroaster: new perspectives on a great world religion.
Monday 20th April - Dr Matt Jones (University of Nottingham): 20,000 years of impacts, adaptation and vulnerability: case studies from the Near East.
Monday 27th April - Ana Silkatcheva (University of Sydney): TBA
Monday 4th May - Dr Bernadette Drabsch (University of Newcastle): The Ghassulian Wall Art: When, Why and to Whom.
Monday 11th May - Dr Ron Tappy (Pittsburgh Theological Seminary): The Linear Alphabet and the Longue Durée.
Monday 18th May - No NESS
Monday 25th May - Jamie Fraser (University of Sydney):Dolmens in the Levant

Download a copy of the Semester 1 programme here


A listing of the the seminar schedule for Classics and Ancient History from Semester 2 2014 can be found here

A listing of the seminar schedule for Classical Archaeology from Semester 2, 2014 can be found here

A listing of the Near Eastern Archaeology seminar schedule from Semester 2, 2014 can be found here