Past Events

Lecture by Cindy Lee Scott

Date: 
Sunday, May 8, 2016 -
14:00 to 15:00
Location: 
R303 Paterson Hall, Carleton University, Ottawa
Event Description: 

Cindy Lee Scott (Objects Conservation (Private Practice) CLS Conservation Services Ltd.), "From the Ground to the Shelf – The Role of Conservation in the Archaeological Process"

Lecture by Sarah Nash

Date: 
Wednesday, March 23, 2016 -
19:30 to 20:30
Location: 
Canadian Institute, Dionysiou Aiginitou 7
Event Description: 

Sarah Nash (Neda and Franz Leipen Fellow, The Canadian Institute in Greece; Ph.D. candidate, Department of History & Classics, University of Alberta), “Portraits of Romans as Hercules and Omphale”

It was not uncommon in antiquity to depict men and women in the guise of mythical figures. The choice of Hercules and Queen Omphale of Lydia, however, cannot be explained in such a straightforward manner. The ancient texts tend to characterize Omphale as a dominant and even “emasculating” woman, whose contravention of patriarchal values is epitomized by cross-dressing and exchanging gender roles with her slave – or ‘captivated’ lover – Hercules. Moreover, the comparison of historical figures to Hercules and Omphale is in every instance defamatory. Given the prevalence of this negative portrayal of Omphale in the textual sources, it is quite striking to find portraiture depicting Roman matrons as the nude queen with Hercules’ lion skin and club. The primary research objective then is to assess how Omphale becomes reconciled with the model of the chaste and obedient Roman matron in commemorative contexts.

In assessing what images of Hercules and Omphale evoke for Roman viewers, scholars traditionally defer to the literary sources, which has only cast the images in a negative light, or even as Augustan counter-propaganda against Marcus Antonius and Kleopatra. We must, rather, evaluate these images in their own terms and social context. Semiotic analysis allows us to situate images of Hercules and Omphale within the Hellenistic iconographic tradition of “disarming love”, as yet another expression of the power of Eros. Moreover, I find theories of identification valuable in exploring how Hercules and Omphale become for the Roman viewers an exemplum felicitatis, or model of happiness in their private lives. By readdressing three main categories of evidence – namely, domestic frescoes, tableware and objects of personal adornment – I intend to offer concrete instances in which the Romans evidently wished to relate to Hercules and Omphale, a trend which culminates in the mythological portraiture of the late-first to third centuries CE. In terms of the portraiture itself, I argue overall that Hercules and Omphale – as a symbol for 'the power of eros’ – were suitable models for spouses in an era which witnessed first of all a positive re-evaluation of eros in marriage, and secondly of andreia (i.e. ‘manliness’) in women, both of which contributed to harmonia between husband and wife.

Lectures by Leslie Tepper & Evelyn Vanderhoop

Date: 
Tuesday, March 15, 2016 -
19:30 to 20:30
Location: 
Canadian Institute in Greece, Dionysiou Aiginitou 7
Event Description: 

Dr. Leslie Tepper (Ethnologis & Curator, Canadian Museum of History), "Haida: Creating a Contemporary Exhibition"

Evelyn Vanderhoop (Canadian Haida Artist), "Haida: Creating Contemporary Identity through Traditional Knowledge"

 

In connection with the Haida: Life. Spirit. Art exhibition (on display until April 20th at the Archaeological Museum of Thessaloniki), we invite you to a presentation by an expert on Pacific west Coast Aboriginal History/Anthropology and a Haida artist (Dr. Leslie Tepper, Curator-Ethnologist at the Canadian Museum of History; Evelyn Vanderhoop, Haida Artist Textile Weaver).

The evening event will include a lecture by Leslie (20 min) about the Northwest Coast culture with a focus on the Haida, followed by a talk by Evelyn (20 min) on topics such as weaving, family history, return of weaving to the community, followed by a showing/demonstration of the woven items Evelyn will have with her (10-15 min). The event will conclude with a Q&A. A slide show will accompany the presentations.

Lecture by Metaxia Tsipopoulou

Date: 
Wednesday, March 9, 2016 -
19:30 to 20:30
Location: 
Canadian Institute, Dionysiou Aiginitou 7
Event Description: 

Metaxia Tsipopoulou (Director Emerita, Hellenic Ministry of Culture), “«Ce qui donne un sens à la vie donne un sens à la mort» (Antoine de Saint Exupéry). The Pre- and Proto-palatial cemetery at Petras, Siteia. (ca 2800-1900 BC)”

At Petras, Siteia, in Northeastern Crete, the archaeological sites extend over two neighbouring hills. Excavations, directed by Metaxia Tsipopoulou, started in 1985 and are still in progress. On Hill I an important Minoan palace and parts of a settlement occupied from the Early Minoan II to the Late Minoan IIIB periods were excavated. On Hill II (or Kephala), a Final Neolithic IV and Early Minoan I settlement, another settlement dated to the Late Minoan III and an extensive Early Minoan I to Middle Minoan II cemetery are being excavated.

Petras played a leading role in the cultural, economic, and religious networks not only of Crete, but also of the Aegean, and beyond, in the Eastern Mediterranean. The cemetery comprises house-tombs with up to 10 rooms measuring between 50-90m, each of them used by an extended elite family.  To date 14 house tombs have been excavated and there is a possibility of more. The tombs were unplundered and this fact combined with the modern methods of the excavation, documentation and study by an international group of experts offer a unique opportunity to understand social status and competition in a Pre- and Protopalatial society.

Lecture by Florence Liard

Date: 
Wednesday, February 24, 2016 -
19:30 to 20:30
Location: 
Canadian Institute, Dionysiou Aiginitou 7
Event Description: 

Florence Liard (Postdoctoral Researcher, Université Libre de Bruxelles), “The knowledge, skills and traditions of ancient potters: Exploring the principles and potential of ceramic petrology in Greek archaeology”

The detection of markers of “crisis”, which can be broadly defined as a deep social disruption followed by restructuring, is a research theme that has become popular in Greek archaeology. It has often been researched through a typo-stylistic study of decorated pottery, with the aim of reconstructing historical landmarks of past civilizations.

This lecture investigates the use of ceramic petrology over the past 35 years, through a comparative account of studies carried out in protohistoric (Late Bronze Age Crete) as well as historical contexts (Late Byzantine and Frankish Greece). Advances in sampling strategies and instrumentation are discussed in relation to the evolution of wider theoretical frameworks and research inquiries in the discipline of archaeology.

Dr. Liard will discuss how and to what extent ceramic petrology, albeit at the dawn of its development in this context, can provide further understanding of the phenomena of crisis and their local outcome on past populations’ lifestyles, through a detailed study of technological traditions associated with pottery production and use.

Lecture by Brendan Burke

Date: 
Wednesday, February 10, 2016 -
19:30 to 20:30
Location: 
Canadian Institute, Dionysiou Aiginitou 7
Event Description: 

Brendan Burke (Associate Professor, Department of Greek & Roman Studies, University of Victoria), “Myths of Wealth in the Ancient World: Ex Oriente Lux”

Many foreigners, according to Greek sources, had a reputation for astronomical wealth: Priam, Midas, Croesus, Maussolos are just a few. Legends surrounding these individuals were a great source of fascination. What is often surprising to modern audiences, however, is that most of these figures from Greek and Roman legend were powerful, historical rulers. It is also often assumed that incredible wealth was in some ways corrupting or debilitating to those who held it. This lecture examines these stories and looks at the archaeological evidence for such fabulous wealth in order to distinguish myth from history.

Lecture by Dimitri Nakassis

Date: 
Wednesday, January 27, 2016 -
19:30 to 20:30
Location: 
Canadian Institute, Dionysiou Aiginitou 7
Event Description: 

Dimitri Nakassis (Associate Professor, Department of Classics, University of Toronto), “From types to relations: complicating the economic history of the Greek Late Bronze Age”

Research into the early Greek economy has largely relied on static types built from the top down on the basis of analogical and textual evidence, despite the rapid growth in the archaeological evidence over the past fifty years. This paper argues, through analysis of the internal organization of the palatial economy and its external exchange relations, that conventional models do not adequately explain the economy of the Greek Late Bronze Age. It is usually thought, on analogy with the Near East, that the economic roles of the Mycenaean palaces were redistributive as to staples and reciprocal as to wealth, yet the evidence is much less clear than has been thought. Internally, the palaces made use of a variety of means to acquire goods, including market-type exchanges, and it is probable that interregional trade was mainly coordinated by elite intermediaries.

Screening of a Canadian Movie

Date: 
Wednesday, December 9, 2015 -
19:30 to 21:30
Location: 
The Canadian Institute in Greece, Dionysiou Aiginitou 7
Event Description: 

Screening of the Canadian Movie, “The Grand Seduction” (2013; 1 hour 53 minutes; English)

Residents of a small fishing community in Newfoundland must convince a young doctor to become their full-time physician by any means necessary.

Directed by the excellent Canadian actor and filmmaker Don McKellar (his first feature in over a decade), and starring Brendan Gleeson as the main character, Murray, this is a film filled with astute details, striking scenery, and well-rounded characters living in reality.

The town has been on the verge of luring a petroleum byproducts factory for years, but hasn't been able to close the deal because the company requires that the town have at least 250 adult inhabitants and a full-time doctor with hospital privileges. Murray hears about a young American physician who's been waylaid on his way home to Los Angeles from a cricket tournament after airport security discovered cocaine in his luggage. The doc has to spend a month in Canada until his case is resolved. Murray gets him to spend his time in the town, figuring that if they can all join forces to make the place seem like an Eden built for Lewis' personal needs, he'll decide to stay, and they'll be able to land the factory.

Lecture by Gerald P. Schaus

Date: 
Wednesday, November 18, 2015 -
19:30 to 20:30
Location: 
The Canadian Institute in Greece, Dionysiou Aiginitou 7
Event Description: 

Gerald P. Schaus (Professor, Department of Archaeology and Classical Studies, Wilfrid Laurier University), "Laconia and East Greece: Cultural Exchange in the Archaic Period"

This paper examines some cultural connections between Laconia and East Greece, including Lydian Sardis, in the Archaic Period, focusing on similarities in pottery decoration, but more broadly considering literary evidence and a variety of other archaeological sources.  Laconian products and influences found in East Greece are examined in light of evidence for Ionians visiting and working in Laconia.

Book Presentation/Reading by W. Ruth Kozak

Date: 
Wednesday, October 7, 2015 -
19:30 to 20:30
Location: 
The Canadian Institute in Greece, Dionysiou Aiginitou 7
Event Description: 

Book Presentation/Reading by W. Ruth Kozak, “Shadow of the Lion: Blood on the Moon”

Taking fifteen years to write, Shadow of the Lion: Blood on the Moon is Volume One of an epic story set in the aftermath of the death of Alexander the Great in 323 BC and the bloody Wars of Succession which follows as W. Ruth Kozak’s debut literary novel chronicles the journey of the newly appointed joint-kings, Alexander’s half-brother Philip Arridaios and his infant son, Iskander (Alexander IV).

W. Ruth Kozak is a Canadian travel journalist with a strong interest in history and archaeology. A frequent traveller, Ruth lived for several years in Greece and instructs classes in travel journalism and creative writing for the Vancouver School Board.

The novel was extensively researched in Greece, with the support of Classical scholars, the Greek Ministry of Culture, the Society of Macedonian Studies (Thessaloniki), the Finnish and Norwegian Institutes in Athens and with research undertaken in the Gennadius Library and the British Library in London.

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