Yale Workshop in Ancient Societies

This interdisciplinary workshop serves as a meeting ground for those who work on the ancient world at Yale, and is an important forum that allows sustained conversation about a common theme. The workshop meets once a month during the academic year, and is supplemented by the core graduate seminar in the Yale Initiative for the Study of Antiquity and the Premodern World.

Presenters include Yale faculty and graduate students, as well as occasional visiting professors. The chronological scope of the seminar extends over the first millennium BCE and up through the premodern period; issues of reception are also considered. The theme for 2014–15 is “What is Commentary?” For a description of the associated graduate seminar go here.

Working Papers and Resources

Schedule 2014–15. All meetings start at noon. A light lunch is served.

  • September 5: Ed Kamens (Yale EALL), “Classical Japanese Poetics through Commentary” (WLH 309)
  • October 3: Verity Harte (YALE Philosophy), “Platonic Self-Commentary?” (Phelps 401)
  • November 7: Steven Fraade (YALE Religious Studies), “Early Rabbinic Midrash as Commentary: Between Philo and Qumran” (WHC 208)
  • December 5: Rina Talgam (Hebrew University), “From Wall Paintings to Floor Mosaics: Jewish and Christian Attritudes towards Figurative Art” (YUAG)
  • January 16: Emily Greenwood (Yale Classics), “The Classical Commentary: Meditations on an Elliptical Genre” (WHC 208)
  • February 6: Tony Grafton (Princeton), “Some ways of Composing a Renaissance Commentary: Isaac Casaubon Explicates Polybius” (Phelps 401)
  • March 6: Eckart Frahm (Yale NELC), “Origins of interpretation: Cuneiform text commentaries from Assyria and Babylonia” (Phelps 401)
  • April 17: Sean Gurd (Missouri), “Discretion/Interpolation. Philology, Commentary, and Textuality.” (WHC 208)
  • May 1: Dale Martin (Yale Religious Studies), “Forgery as Commentary within the New Testament” (HGS 303)

Co-sponsored by the Departments of Classics, Religious Studies, and History; by the Program of Judaic Studies; by the Yale Divinity School; and by the Whitney Humanities Center. For further information or to make suggestions, please contact: christina.kraus@yale.edu or hindy.najman@yale.edu 

Ruins photo