Critical Dialogues

Critical Dialogues

About the Program

Critical Dialogues is an informal reading group on the ancient world hosted by CAHS in collaboration with Dr Yvette Hunt, one of UQ’s own Honorary Research Fellows in Classics. This is an opportunity to discuss texts outside the scope of most Ancient History courses at UQ, covering topics beyond the traditional. Past topics have included Zombies, Haunted Houses, and Werewolves and Lycanthropy. Texts will be provided in advance of each session, giving attendees the chance to check out the topic and formulate their thoughts before getting together with the group.

Access to the Program

The program is open to all CAHS members, and all sessions will be held on-campus in Michie (9) 536.

Semester 2 Sessions:

Join us every second Thursday from 5:00pm, on the following dates:

  • Session 1 – Tuesday 2nd August, Week 2

    Location: Forgan Smith Building (1) Room E-319

    Time: 5:00pm

    Our host for this session is Oskar Fletcher, who will be presenting on the topic of Love in Plato’s Symposium. The Symposium is a Socratic dialogue, created by the Classical Greek philosopher Plato. It examines the meaning of love and the nature of Greek relationships. This presentation will explore the various speeches in this dialogue, whether meaningful or comical, and compare them to Greek society as a whole.

    Oskar Fletcher is an MPhil student in Ancient History, and a tour guide at the R.D. Milns Antiquities Museum. His thesis examines the cultural meaning of ram horn iconography in cults of Zeus and Apollo. His broader research interests include Ancient Greek religion, culture, language, and how these features interacted within Greek society.

    Readings:

  • Session 2 – Tuesday 23rd August, Week 5

    Location: Forgan Smith Building (1) Room E-319

    Time: 5:00pm

    This session our host, Katherine Prouting, will discuss ancient disabilities of Athens.

    Katherine Prouting is an MPhil student at the University of Queensland writing her thesis on ‘Domestic Violence in the Athenian Law-Court Speeches: Perception, Procedure, and Punishment’, under the supervision of Prof. Alastair Blanshard. Having completed an Honours Degree in the Bachelor of Classical Studies at the Australian National University (2012-2016), she spent several years working before coming to UQ in mid-2019 for her MPhil. She is extremely passionate about Attic oratory and wants everyone to like it as much as she does. Katherine has also spoken about Athenian law at various conferences including the CUNY Postgraduate Conference in New York City (2020), The Australasian Society for Classical Studies (ASCS 2021, 2022), and the Cancelled Conference (2021).

    Readings:

  • Session 3 – Tuesday 13th September, Week 8

    Location: Forgan Smith Building (1) Room E-319

    Time: 5:00pm

    This session is hosted by Yvette Hunt, who will be discussing the topic of Pseudo-Aristotle ‘Problems’!

    Yvette Hunt is a University of Queensland alumna and honorary research fellow, whose areas of study have included such topics as ancient xenophobia, poisons and poisoners in antiquity, Roman public entertainment (especially ancient pantomime dancing – the topic of her PhD thesis), popular ancient medicine, and ancient magic. Despite her areas of study being ancient history, she has published a translation and commentary on Latin text Medicina Plinii for Routledge’s Scientific Writings from the Ancient and Medieval World series, and is currently working on a translation of Sextus Placitus’ Medicine from Animals, Livestock, Beasts and Birds. Yvette uses Critical Dialogues to introduce students to more obscure ancient sources, address topics requested by students, or even conduct some elements of recreation of ancient practice.

  • Session 4 – Tuesday 4th October, Week 10

    Location: Forgan Smith Building (1) Room E-319

    Time: 5:00pm

    This session our host, Paige Mauder, will be discussing the topic of Vindolanda Tablets!

  • Session 5 – Tuesday 18th October, Week 12

    Location: Forgan Smith Building (1) Room E-319

    Time: 5:00pm

    More information coming soon!

In the meantime, stay tuned for the release of the readings for each session!

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