Two New Books by CNERS Professors

Two New Books by CNERS Professors

We’re happy to announce the publication of two new volumes by CNERS professors:

V. Dahpna Arbel, Paul C. Burns, J.R.C Cousland, Richard Menkis and Dietmar Neufeld (eds.) Not Sparing the Child. Human Sacrifice in the Ancient world and Beyond. Studies in Honor of Professor Paul G. Mosca. New York: Bloomsbury/T&T Clark (2015).

A number of current and former CNERS colleagues contributed chapters to the festschrift.

Thomas Hikade and Jane Roy – “Human Sacrifice in Pre-and Early Dynastic Egypt: What do you Want to Find?”
Thomas Schneider – “God’s Infanticide in the Night of Passover: Exodus 12 in the Light of Ancient Egyptian Rituals.”
C. W. Marshall – “Death and the Maiden: Human Sacrifice in Euripides’ Andromeda.”
Dietmar Neufeld – “Mocking Boys, Baldness, and Bears: Elisha’s Deadly Honour (2 Kings 2:23-24).”
Paul C. Burns – “Child Sacrifice: A Polyvalent Story in Early Eucharistic Piety.”
J.R.C. Cousland “DEUS NECANS: Jesus in the Infancy Gospel of Thomas.”

Dietmar Neufeld and Richard DeMaris (eds). Para entender el mundo social del Nuevo Testamento. Espana: Editorial Verbo Divino (2015). Translation of Understanding the Social World of the New Testament by Serafin Fernandez Sala.

Professors Ahmed and Chaurdhry Receive Prestigious Fellowships

Two CNERS professors received prestigious and highly competitive visiting fellowships for the 2015-16 academic year.

Rumee Ahmed has been offered a Stanford Humanities Center External Faculty Fellowship for the academic year 2015-16.  His topic is “Islamic Systematics: The Art and Science of Islamic Legal Reform.”

Ayesha Chaudhry has been offered an appointment as a fellow at the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, Harvard University.  Her topic is “Constructing a Feminist Shari’a — Re-imagining ‘Ā’isha — the Messenger of the Prophet of Islam.”

Congratulations Rumee and Ayesha.

Two New Books by Prof. Michael Griffin

We’re pleased to announce the publication of two new books by Prof. Michael Griffin:

Olympiodorus: Life of Plato and on Plato First Alcibiades 1-9. Ancient Commentators on Aristotle, gen. ed. Richard Sorabji and Michael J. Griffin (Bloomsbury); and

Aristotle’s Categories in the Early Roman Empire. Oxford Classical Monograph (OUP).

Congratulations Michael!


Students are introduced to archaeological, historical and literary approaches that offer substantial exposure to the multidisciplinary aspects of the ancient Mediterranean and Near East. The complementary nature of our Classics, Near Eastern, and Religious Studies programs provide our students with insight into the complexity and scope of human civilization as they learn how ancient cultures are intertwined. Undergraduates and graduates are encouraged to explore the boundaries between the Greco-Roman world and the ancient Near East, deepening their understanding and making for a rich learning experience.





To study the classical world is to discover the roots of Western Civilization. Our students investigate how the modern world has been shaped by ancient cultures, from laws to literature. By studying Mediterranean ancient civilizations, students gain not only a greater appreciation of human achievements across cultures and centuries but also a more objective understanding of ourselves and our times.


Fieldwork is an essential part of archaeological and historical research in our department. We offer many exciting and diverse research opportunities where department members can get involved in a range of archaeological projects. These opportunities allow students to access first-hand the ancient Mediterranean and Near Eastern civilizations and discover the rich cultural history they possess. The Centre for the Study of Ancient Sicily, for example, aims to conduct and publish world-class research on Sicily, providing undergraduate and graduate students the extraordinary opportunity to study the largest island in the Mediterranean. The Kalavasos and Maroni Built Environment Project offers students opportunities to engage with cutting-edge digital technologies and excavation methods as they investigate the relationship between social interaction and Late Bronze Age urban landscapes on the island of Cyprus. Our archaeology courses also help develop critical thinking and problem solving skills by placing emphasis on fieldwork, archaeological theory and practice, as well as discussion of relevant social and historical processes.


Latin prose of the imperial age. In this course we will read a selection of authors from the imperial age onwards, including Seneca the Elder and Younger, Pliny the Elder and Younger, and Quintillian among others.


LATN 402B/502B: Epyllion and Epic

In this course, we will study the controversial genre epyllion. The term is used by modern scholars to describe short mythological epics notable for their erotic themes and prominent female characters, as in Catullus 64. But ‘epyllion’ is also used by some to refer to short episodes inset within larger epics, such as the account of Orpheus and Eurydice in Virgil’s fourth Georgic, and the narratives of Ovid’s Metamorphoses. In this class, all students will read Catullus 64, the second half of the fourth Georgic, and Book Ten of the Metamorphoses in Latin, as well as reading additional Greek and Latin texts in translation. Students enrolled in LATN502B will also read Book Eight of the Metamorphoses. We will look at some of the issues that have particularly preoccupied critics of Latin poetry over the past quarter of a century: above all genre, intertextuality/allusion, and ekphrasis (vivid description, often of a work of art). Above all, we will attempt to answer for ourselves the perennial question of whether this genre actually exists at all.



Reading and Writing Latin Prose Texts


Hellenistic Poetry introduced a wide range of verse forms to Greek, as the language spread throughout the Mediterranean basin. We will read selections from Callimachus, Theocritus, Apollonius, and others, paying attention to metre, cultural/performative contexts, and the impact on subsequent Latin literature. We will also read Menander’s comedy Samia in translation, in order to position his theatre in the wider literary contexts of the Hellenistic age.

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