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The interdepartmental Classical Studies Program (CLST) at Columbia University (contact information here) brings together faculty from Art History and Archaeology, Classics, History, and Philosophy. Students in the program pursue a Ph.D. or an M.A. in Classical Studies, meeting requirements in three fields relevant to the study of Greek and Roman antiquity as well as the larger Ancient Mediterranean. Together with the Center for the Ancient Mediterranean, Classical Studies is the home of a vibrant community of scholars working in ancient studies at Columbia University. Learn more…

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Columbia Classical Studies Photo Award 2015

Throughout the summer, we are posting photos from places where the CLST students travel, do research, excavate, and teach.

The first winner of the CLST Summer Photo Award 2015 is Maria Dimitropoulos, who just graduated from the the Classical Studies MA Program and has been accepted into our PhD Program. Maria is currently traveling in the south of Italy. She participates in the Apulia-Paestum in Residence Archaeological Scholars Program, a seminar organized by the Newington-Cropsey Foundation. The program takes graduate students to the archaeological sites of Magna Graecia in South Italy. Impressed by the variety of sites, Maria sent us several images. Photos and descriptions Maria Dimitropoulos.

Temple of Athena in Paestum in the evening, 500 B.C, by Maria Dimitropoulos. This building is an early example of the Doric and Ionic architectural styles co-existing: it is a Doric temple yet there are Ionic columns.

Temple of Athena in Paestum in the evening, 500 B.C, by Maria Dimitropoulos. This building is an early example of the Doric and Ionic architectural styles co-existing: it is a Doric temple yet there are Ionic columns.

Court in the House of Neptune and Amphitrite in Herculaneum, 1st century A.D. with a mosaic of Neptune and Amphitrite on the east wall, surrounded by frescoes depicting plants and fountains; by Maria Dimitropoulos.

Court in the House of Neptune and Amphitrite in Herculaneum, 1st century A.D. with a mosaic of Neptune and Amphitrite on the east wall, surrounded by frescoes depicting plants and fountains; by Maria Dimitropoulos.

Marble bas-relief decorating the front of the stibadium in the cenatio of the Villa Faragola in Ascoli Satriano, 5th - 6th century A.D., by Maria Dimitropoulos. The small marble slab depicts a dancer in front of an altar surrounded by a snake.

Marble bas-relief decorating the front of the stibadium in the cenatio of the Villa Faragola in Ascoli Satriano, 5th – 6th century A.D., by Maria Dimitropoulos. The small marble slab depicts a dancer in front of an altar surrounded by a snake.

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Call for Applications: Classical Studies Summer Fellowship 2015

The interdepartmental Classical Studies Graduate Program at Columbia, CLST, is offering fellowships to be used as summer funding for CLST Ph.D. students. The fellowships are intended as an additional financial resource to GSAS summer funding as well as other fellowships you may have. We wish to support academic projects that will significantly further your education. Applications must include a description of your project, its relevance to your educational path, as well as a budget. Plausible projects include: research in libraries and archives, travel to excavation sites or other places of relevance to your studies, and language training, and more. At the end of the summer, recipients of the fellowship must submit a report. Two recipients will be awarded a small additional sum for outstanding completion of their summer project. Relevant submissions at the end of the summer include completed conference or journal papers, dissertation proposals that are innovative and especially promising, dissertation chapters, and more. Please send your application by email to the Chair and Vice-Chair of the program by Tuesday, April 21.

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Classical Dialogues: Tombs and Burial Customs in Third-Century CE Rome by Barbara Borg

As part of its Classical Dialogues series, the Classical Studies Graduate Program CLST at Columbia University is pleased to welcome Barbara Borg, Professor in the Department of Classics and Ancient History, University of Exeter. On April 10, 2015, 11am-1pm, Barbara Borg will discuss her recent book Crisis & Ambition: Tombs and Burial Customs in Third-Century CE Rome, Oxford (OUP) 2013. Commentators Anne Chen (Brown University) and Irene SanPietro (Columbia University). Location: Schermerhorn Hall 930, Columbia University. Please see below Professor Borg’s description of the project.

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Tombs and burial customs are an exquisite source for social history, as their commemorative character inevitably expresses much of the contemporaneous ideology of a society. This book presents, for the first time, a holistic view of the funerary culture of Rome and its surroundings during the third century AD. While the third century is often largely ignored in social history, it was a transitional period, an era of major challenges–political, economic, and social–which inspired creativity and innovation, and paved the way for the new system of late antiquity.

Barbara Borg argues that during this time there was, in many ways, a return to practices known from the Late Republic and early imperial period, with spectacular monuments for the rich, and a large-scale reappearance of collective burial spaces. Through a study of terraced tombs, elite monuments, the catacomb nuclei, sarcophagi, and painted image decoration, this volume explores how the third century was an exciting period of experimentation and creativity, a time when non-Christians and Christians shared fundamental ideas, needs, and desires as well as cemeteries, tombs, and hypogea. Ambition continued to be a driving force and a determining factor in all social classes, who found innovative solutions to the challenges they encountered.

In its Classical Dialogues series, the interdepartmental Classical Studies Graduate Progam CLST at Columbia University invites authors of recent work in ancient studies that is exemplary for the kind of study that CLST aims to foster. All faculty and students at Columbia and beyond are cordially invited. CLST students are required to read carefully at least one chapter or article in advance and prepare questions and comments for discussion.

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