Thomas Spencer Jerome Lectures Series

Maria Wyke – Ancient Rome in Silent Cinema

Monday, April 13, 2015–6:00 PM–Monday, April 20, 2015–8:00 PM
AAR Lecture Room and Museo Nazionale Romano di Palazzo Altemps
, Italy
Maria Wyke – Ancient Rome in Silent Cinema

In recent years, Hollywood has released a number of big-budget films set in antiquity, from Gladiator (2000) to Pompeii (2014). Yet cinema has been fascinated with the ancient world—and with Roman history in particular—since it emerged as a new technology more than one hundred years ago. The persistent presence of ancient Rome in early cinema compels us to ask: why did so modern a medium have so strong an interest in antiquity right from its start? What did ancient Rome do for cinema? And what did cinema do for ancient Rome?

Maria Wyke, a noted scholar of Latin literature, will address these questions and more in the 2015 Jerome Lectures, The Ancient World in Silent Cinema. In the 43rd year of the Lecture series, this year will include three lectures, with introductions by Alessandro Schiesaro (La Sapienza Università di Roma) and Alessandra Capodiferro (SS-Col, Museo Nazionale Romano di Palazzo Altemps) and, for the first time, a screening of the silent film, The Last Days of Pompeii (1913), with intertitles in English and Italian and live piano accompaniment by Stefano Maccagno.

The first lecture will set the scene for more detailed discussion of the three national film industries that reconstructed their own versions of ancient Rome on screen from the 1890s through the arrival of sound in the 1920s—France, Italy, and the United States. Subjects addressed will include the relationship of early cinema’s Rome with the Rome of other nineteenth-century arts, both high (theatre, opera, dance, painting, the novel) and popular (circus shows, pyrodramas, puppetry and magic acts); the development of cinematic technologies for the reconstruction of Roman history; the use of Rome on film to stimulate a collective national and imperial consciousness; and the cinematic reconstruction of the Roman past to explore—and challenge—modern concerns about religion, politics, ethics, class, gender and sexuality, as well as the new medium itself.

All events are free and open to the public. All lectures will be given in English.

About Maria Wyke, 2015 Jerome Lecturer

Maria Wyke is Professor of Latin at University College London. She has written extensively on Roman love poetry and ancient gender and sexuality, on the reception of Julius Caesar in Western culture (Caesar: A Life in Western Culture, 2007; Caesar in the USA, 2012), and on ancient Rome in cinema (Projecting the Past: Ancient Rome, Cinema and History, 1997; ed., with P. Michelakis, The Ancient World in Silent Cinema, 2013). Most recently she has co-authored with Christopher Pelling a short work that explores why classical literature still has relevance today, Twelve Voices from Greece and Rome: Ancient Ideas for Modern Times (2014).

About the Jerome Lectures

Thomas Spencer Jerome (1864-1914) was an American lawyer and lover of Roman history who lived on Capri from 1899 until his death. In his will he endowed a series of lectures to be jointly administered by the University of Michigan and the American Academy in Rome, and delivered at both institutions. The Jerome Lectures have become one of the most prestigious international lecture series for the presentation of new work on Roman history and culture. The revised lectures are typically published by the University of Michigan Press.

Monday, 13 April 2015
6pm, AAR Lecture Room
Lecture I
Introduction, Alessandro Schiesaro (La Sapienza Università di Roma)
France 1890s to 1910s: experimentation and aesthetics

Wednesday, 15 April 2015
5:30pm, Museo Nazionale Romano di Palazzo Altemps
Via di Sant'Apollinare, 8
Lecture II - Film Screening
Introduction, Alessandra Capodiferro (SS-Col, Museo Nazionale Romano di Palazzo Altemps)
a screening of the silent film, The Last Days of Pompeii (1913), with intertitles in English and Italian and live piano accompaniment by Stefano Maccagno.

Friday, 17 April 2015
6pm, AAR Lecture Room
Lecture III
Italy 1910s: national consciousness

Monday, 20 April 2015
6pm, AAR Lecture Room
Lecture IV
America 1910s to 1920s: morality and subversion

In collaboration with the Soprintendenza Speciale per il Colosseo, il Museo Nazionale Romano e l’Area
archeologica di Roma - Museo Nazionale Romano di Palazzo Altemps.

Amy Richlin – Uranian Love Goes Underground

Monday, November 21, 2022–6:00 PM
AAR Lecture Room
McKim, Mead & White Building
Via Angelo Masina, 5
Rome, Italy
Monochromatic brown 19th-century photograph of the head of a young boy wearing a floral crown and staring off camera

Detail of Baron Wilhelm von Gloeden, Boy with lilies, ca. 1890–1914, toned gelatin-silver print, 8⅜ × 6¼ in. J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles (artwork in the public domain)

The Thomas Spencer Jerome Lecture Series is among the most prestigious international platforms for the presentation of new work on Roman history and culture. The Jerome Lectures are delivered at both the American Academy in Rome and the University of Michigan. Amy Richlin, Distinguished Research Professor of Classics at the University of California, Los Angeles, will give the lectures in the series’s forty-ninth year.

One of the great mysteries of the history of sexuality is how the Greco-Roman sex/gender system disappeared. This series of three Thomas Spencer Jerome Lectures, titled Dirty Words: The Selective Survival of Latin Erotica from St. Jerome to Mr. Jerome, will trace the story of that shift, showing how pederasty vanished from discourse at the beginning of a heterocentric Europe, yet continued underground through the mid-twentieth century. Lectures will discuss not only what was read by scholars and writers but what was taught in schools, where Latin literature was the curriculum through the mid-nineteenth century. The title Dirty Words embodies the problem of the moral control of the circulation of knowledge.

Lecture 1

Jerome’s Captive Slave Woman and the Latin Canon
November 14 – 6:00pm
American Academy in Rome
Villa Aurelia
Largo di Porta S. Pancrazio, 1

Lecture 2

Billy Johnson of Eton: Classics, the Closet, and the Schools
November 16 – 6:00pm
Finnish Institute in Rome
Villa Lante al Gianicolo
Passeggiata del Gianicolo, 10

Lecture 3

Uranian Love Goes Underground
November 21 – 6:00pm
American Academy in Rome
Lecture Room
Via Angelo Masina, 5

The third lecture, called “Uranian Love Goes Underground,” will be held in the AAR Lecture Room. An opening of sexual discourse in fin de siècle Europe culminated in the scandalous trial of Oscar Wilde, convicted in 1895 of indecent behavior with younger men. Readers of The Artist and Journal of Home Culture, a London periodical edited by Kains Jackson and Gleeson White, kept a lower profile. Although devoted to the arts, this publication was not illustrated. Instead, its contributors used words to “paint” pictures of pederastic art both real (the paintings of Henry Scott Tuke, the photographs of Baron Corvo and Baron von Gloeden) and imaginary—often invoking classical models that the writers clearly had not read themselves. As in the “retrosexuality” of the 100s CE, a kind of cosplay enabled enthusiasts like the young John Beazley to enact their own Arcadia. Practitioners included Thomas Spencer Jerome, whose sympathy with the emperor Tiberius’s exploits on Capri is recorded by the novelist E. F. Benson, himself a member of the queer family of the Archbishop of Canterbury. Better-known figures like John Addington Symonds and Edward Carpenter combined an admiration for manly beauty in art with a use of classical texts to promote love between men. Much of this turn-of-the-century work substitutes class for slavery as an enabling framework, combined with contemporaneous sex tourism in Italy. By the 1950s, pederastic art had all gone underground, and its expression has since gone silent, now understood as pedophilia and deeply reviled. How important is this extensive history when trying to understand Roman society and its reception over the centuries?

Monochromatic brown 19th-century photograph of the head of a young boy wearing a floral crown and staring off camera
Baron Wilhelm von Gloeden, Boy with lilies, ca. 1890–1914, toned gelatin-silver print, 8⅜ × 6¼ in. J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles (artwork in the public domain)

Amy Richlin is Distinguished Research Professor of Classics at UCLA. She works on Roman society and culture, especially women’s history, Roman comedy and satire, and the history of sexuality. Her most recent book, Slave Theater in the Roman Republic: Plautus and Popular Comedy (2017), won the Goodwin Award from the Society for Classical Studies. Richlin’s Jerome Lectures spring from her career-long fascination with the simultaneous radical difference and deep continuities between ancient and modern sex/gender systems.

The lecture will be held in English.

This event, to be presented in person at the Academy, is free and open to the public.

Notice

Space in the Lecture Room is limited, and seats are available on a first-come, first-served basis. For access to the Academy, guests will be asked to show a valid photo ID and comply with COVID-19 safety protocols (such as wearing FFP2 masks while indoors). Please contact events [at] aarome.org with any questions.

Backpacks and luggage with dimensions larger than 40 x 35 x 15 cm (16 x 14 x 6 in.) are not permitted on the property. There are no locker facilities available.

Watch the video

Amy Richlin – Billy Johnson of Eton: Classics, the Closet, and the Schools

Wednesday, November 16, 2022–6:00 PM
Villa Lante al Gianicolo
Finnish Institute in Rome
Passeggiata del Gianicolo, 10
Rome, Italy
19th century photograph of a light skinned man sitting in a chair in a 3/4 pose; his arms are raised with his hands touching the back of his head

Detail of a portrait of William Johnson by an unknown photographer, ca. 1865 (artwork in the public domain)

The Thomas Spencer Jerome Lecture Series is among the most prestigious international platforms for the presentation of new work on Roman history and culture. The Jerome Lectures are delivered at both the American Academy in Rome and the University of Michigan. Amy Richlin, Distinguished Research Professor of Classics at the University of California, Los Angeles, will give the lectures in the series’s forty-ninth year.

One of the great mysteries of the history of sexuality is how the Greco-Roman sex/gender system disappeared. This series of three Thomas Spencer Jerome Lectures, titled Dirty Words: The Selective Survival of Latin Erotica, from St. Jerome to Mr. Jerome, will trace the story of that shift, showing how pederasty vanished from discourse at the beginning of a heterocentric Europe, yet continued underground through the mid-twentieth century. Lectures will discuss not only what was read by scholars and writers but what was taught in schools, where Latin literature was the curriculum through the mid-nineteenth century. The title Dirty Words embodies the problem of the moral control of the circulation of knowledge.

Lecture 1

Jerome’s Captive Slave Woman and the Latin Canon
November 14 – 6:00pm
American Academy in Rome
Villa Aurelia
Largo di Porta S. Pancrazio, 1

Lecture 2

Billy Johnson of Eton: Classics, the Closet, and the Schools
November 16 – 6:00pm
Finnish Institute in Rome
Villa Lante al Gianicolo
Passeggiata del Gianicolo, 10

Lecture 3

Uranian Love Goes Underground
November 21 – 6:00pm
American Academy in Rome
Lecture Room
Via Angelo Masina, 5

The second lecture, titled “Billy Johnson of Eton: Classics, the Closet, and the Schools,” will take place at the Finnish Institute in Rome’s Villa Lante al Gianicolo. It is no coincidence that the most famous work of pederastic pornography in the early modern period was Alcibiade fanciullo a scola, a seventeenth-century text that imagines the seductive Socratic Alcibiades as a schoolboy. As Saint Jerome’s Latin canon became the basic curriculum for English boarding schools, a tension arose between the schools’ Christian governance and the erotic content of the canon. At the same time, the secular crackdown on sodomy—now a capital offense—contrasted with the lives of sexual renegades like Lord Byron and with the well-documented sexual abuses within boarding schools. Billy Johnson, a beloved schoolmaster at Eton, was also the author of Ionica (1858), later considered the foundational poetry collection for the Uranian boy-lovers of the fin de siècle. Johnson, though, lived in the time before the closet was even a concept, and a close reading of his journal and teaching materials suggests a life free of definitions. His romantic longings were fostered by the invention of photography: a harbinger of things to come.

TK
Portrait of William Johnson by an unknown photographer, ca. 1865 (artwork in the public domain)

Amy Richlin is Distinguished Research Professor of Classics at UCLA. She works on Roman society and culture, especially women’s history, Roman comedy and satire, and the history of sexuality. Her most recent book, Slave Theater in the Roman Republic: Plautus and Popular Comedy (2017), won the Goodwin Award from the Society for Classical Studies. Richlin’s Jerome Lectures spring from her career-long fascination with the simultaneous radical difference and deep continuities between ancient and modern sex/gender systems.

The lecture will be held in English.

This event, to be presented in person at the Finnish Institute in Rome, is free and open to the public.

Notice

Space in the Villa Lante al Gianicolo is limited, and seats are available on a first-come, first-served basis. Guests will be asked to comply with COVID-19 safety protocols (such as wearing FFP2 masks while indoors).

Watch the video

Amy Richlin – Jerome’s Captive Slave Woman and the Latin Canon

Monday, November 14, 2022–6:00 PM
Villa Aurelia
Largo di Porta S. Pancrazio, 1
Rome, Italy
detail of an illustrated manuscript showing a man wearing a long blue dress and kneeling in front of his fellow monks

Detail of Paul, Herman, and Jean de Limbourg, Belles Heures of Jean de France (folio 184v, Saint Jerome in a Woman’s Dress), 1405–1408/9, ink, tempera, and gold leaf on vellum, 9⅜ x 6⅝ in. The Cloisters Collection, Metropolitan Museum of Art

The Thomas Spencer Jerome Lecture Series is among the most prestigious international platforms for the presentation of new work on Roman history and culture. The Jerome Lectures are delivered at both the American Academy in Rome and the University of Michigan. Amy Richlin, Distinguished Research Professor of Classics at the University of California, Los Angeles, will give the lectures in the series’s forty-ninth year.

One of the great mysteries of the history of sexuality is how the Greco-Roman sex/gender system disappeared. This series of three Thomas Spencer Jerome Lectures, titled Dirty Words: The Selective Survival of Latin Erotica, from St. Jerome to Mr. Jerome, will trace the story of that shift, showing how pederasty vanished from discourse at the beginning of a heterocentric Europe, yet continued underground through the mid-twentieth century. Lectures will discuss not only what was read by scholars and writers but what was taught in schools, where Latin literature was the curriculum through the mid-nineteenth century. The title Dirty Words embodies the problem of the moral control of the circulation of knowledge.

Lecture 1

Jerome’s Captive Slave Woman and the Latin Canon
November 14 – 6:00pm
American Academy in Rome
Villa Aurelia
Largo di Porta S. Pancrazio, 1

Lecture 2

Billy Johnson of Eton: Classics, the Closet, and the Schools
November 16 – 6:00pm
Finnish Institute in Rome
Villa Lante al Gianicolo
Passeggiata del Gianicolo, 10

Lecture 3

Uranian Love Goes Underground
November 21 – 6:00pm
American Academy in Rome
Lecture Room
Via Angelo Masina, 5

The first lecture, titled “Jerome’s Captive Slave Woman and the Latin Canon,” will be held at the Academy’s Villa Aurelia. One of the main reasons why classical Latin survived, including pederastic poetry, is that Church fathers like Saint Jerome could not bear to abandon the curriculum they were trained in. During the Middle Ages, however, Jerome’s reading list meant different things to the monks who copied texts and to those who set Church policy on sexual behavior. Skepticism about Jerome himself is reflected in a prank caricature depicting him wearing a woman’s dress. Now pederasty was a sin, although the heaviest blame fell, surprisingly, on the youngest boys in cathedral schools and monasteries. Although the 1100s saw the rise of several monkish poets who wrote pederastic poetry, later manuscript illustrations reflected a late-medieval backlash against sodomy. Yet Italian Renaissance teachers sometimes edited even the most obscene texts as a project with their students, and sculptors began to specularize the young male nude in sculpture.

TK
Paul, Herman, and Jean de Limbourg, Belles Heures of Jean de France (folio 184v, Saint Jerome in a Woman’s Dress), 1405–1408/9, ink, tempera, and gold leaf on vellum, 9⅜ x 6⅝ in. The Cloisters Collection, Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York (artwork in the public domain)

Amy Richlin is Distinguished Research Professor of Classics at UCLA. She works on Roman society and culture, especially women’s history, Roman comedy and satire, and the history of sexuality. Her most recent book, Slave Theater in the Roman Republic: Plautus and Popular Comedy (2017), won the Goodwin Award from the Society for Classical Studies. Richlin’s Jerome Lectures spring from her career-long fascination with the simultaneous radical difference and deep continuities between ancient and modern sex/gender systems.

The lecture will be held in English.

This event, to be presented in person at the Academy, is free and open to the public.

Watch the video

Lynn Meskell – A Tale of Two Cities: The Fate of Delhi as UNESCO World Heritage

Wednesday, December 1, 2021–6:00 PM
British School at Rome
Via Antonio Gramsci, 61
Rome, Italy
Composite of three images: color portrait of a light skinned, brown haired woman wearing a dark blazer and white shirt in the center, flanked by two black and white photographs of a crane moving a large stone Egyptian monument of a seated figure

Center: Lynn Meskell (photograph by Eric Sucar); left and right: UNESCO’s Nubian Monuments Campaign, Abu Simbel (photographs courtesy of Wikimedia Commons)

Lecture 1

November 29
Imperialism, Internationalism, and Archaeology in the Un/Making of the Middle East
American Academy in Rome
6:00pm

Lecture 2

December 1
A Tale of Two Cities: The Fate of Delhi as UNESCO World Heritage
British School at Rome
6:00pm

Lecture 3

December 7
Engineering Internationalism: Colonialism, the Cold War, and UNESCO’s Victory in Nubia
American Academy in Rome
6:00pm

The Thomas Spencer Jerome Lecture Series is among the most prestigious international platforms for the presentation of new work on Roman history and culture. The Jerome Lectures are presented at both the American Academy in Rome and the University of Michigan. In 2021, the forty-eighth year of the lecture series, Lynn Meskell (2015 Resident), Penn Integrates Knowledge Professor in the School of Arts and Sciences and Professor of Historic Preservation in the Weitzman School of Design at the University of Pennsylvania, will discuss the ethics of global heritage and archaeology.

This series, entitled The Ethics of Heritage and Archaeology in Global Perspective, addresses the role of archaeology and heritage within international networks of social and political change from the legacies of colonialism, to Cold War tensions, to the era of neoliberalism. The lectures reveal how the discovery and salvage of sites worldwide has mobilized government, military, and corporate interests, in what Meskell describes as a form of archaeological adventurism. Employing case studies from the Middle East, India, and Europe, Meskell attempts to uncover the dense network of social, political, and economic agendas that are at play in preserving the past.

The first lecture, held on November 29, is entitled Imperialism, Internationalism, and Archaeology in the Un/Making of the Middle East. Archaeological materialities and imaginaries have been deeply entwined with both colonial rivalries and struggles for self-determination that continue to have lasting legacies. Neo-imperial ambitions in the Middle East and conflict over territory, religion, oil, and antiquities have similarly been accompanied by heritage claims. Throughout the twentieth century, foreign occupation and military conflict galvanized archaeological elites.

The second lecture, A Tale of Two Cities: The Fate of Delhi as UNESCO World Heritage, takes place on December 1. In June 2015, a nomination dossier entitled “Delhi’s Imperial Capital Cities,” combining the two imperial capitals of Shahjahanabad and New Delhi, was proposed for the UNESCO World Heritage List. In this lecture, Meskell traces the trajectory of the dossier and events surrounding its withdrawal to reveal the political imbrications of urban conservation, international institutions, neoliberal governance, and colonial histories. She situates Delhi’s heritage within the ambit of neoliberal governance that recalibrates and promotes urban heritage preservation, while similarly encouraging development and economic growth. The episode reveals tensions in this specific political moment over contemporary perceptions of imperial occupation and “foreign” empires, which plagued the dossier from the outset and continue to reverberate in India today. (This lecture will be held at the British School at Rome.)

The final Jerome lecture, on December 7, is entitled Engineering Internationalism: Colonialism, the Cold War, and UNESCO’s Victory in Nubia. Much has been written about UNESCO’s Nubian Campaign, from the heroism and humanism promoted by the agency’s own vast propaganda machine, to the competing narratives of national saviors whether the French or Americans, to Nubia as a theater for the Cold War, down to individual accounts by technocrats, bureaucrats, and archaeologists. What crystallized in UNESCO’s midcentury mission in Nubia was a material attempt to overcome the fissures that were already appearing in their postwar dream of a global peace.

Lynn Meskell was the 2015 American Academy in Rome Scholar in Residence and is currently PIK Professor of Anthropology in the School of Arts and Sciences and Professor of Historic Preservation in the Weitzman School of Design. At the Penn Museum she is curator in the Middle East and Asia sections. She is currently AD White Professor-at-Large at Cornell University (2019–25). Over the last decade Meskell has conducted an institutional ethnography of UNESCO World Heritage, tracing the politics of governance and sovereignty and the subsequent implications for multilateral diplomacy, international conservation, and heritage rights. Employing archival and ethnographic analysis, her award-winning book A Future in Ruins: UNESCO, World Heritage, and the Dream of Peace (New York: Oxford University Press, 2018) reveals UNESCO’s early forays into a one-world archaeology and its later commitments to global heritage.

Thomas Spencer Jerome (1864–1914) was an American lawyer and a lover of Roman history who lived on Capri from 1899 until his death. In his will, Jerome endowed a series of lectures to be jointly administered by the University of Michigan and the American Academy in Rome, to be delivered at both institutions. The revised lectures are published by the University of Michigan Press.

All lectures will be given in English.

This event, to be presented in person (preregistration required) at the British School at Rome as well as on Zoom, is free and open to the public. Please register for Zoom in advance. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the event.

The lecture series is co-organized with the British School at Rome.

Black and white logo with the letter B S R and the words British School at Rome

 

Notice

A limited number of in-person spaces at the British School at Rome are available. Everyone attending an event in Rome must preregister via Eventbrite and will be required to present a valid Covid vaccination pass.

Lynn Meskell – Imperialism, Internationalism, and Archaeology in the Un/Making of the Middle East

Monday, November 29, 2021–6:00 PM
AAR Lecture Room
McKim, Mead & White Building
Via Angelo Masina, 5
Rome, Italy
Composite of three images: color portrait of a light skinned, brown haired woman wearing a dark blazer and white shirt in the center, flanked by two black and white photographs of a crane moving a large stone Egyptian monument of a seated figure

Center: Lynn Meskell (photograph by Eric Sucar); left and right: UNESCO’s Nubian Monuments Campaign, Abu Simbel (photographs courtesy of Wikimedia Commons)

Lecture 1

November 29
Imperialism, Internationalism, and Archaeology in the Un/Making of the Middle East
American Academy in Rome
6:00pm

Lecture 2

December 1
A Tale of Two Cities: The Fate of Delhi as UNESCO World Heritage
British School at Rome
6:00pm

Lecture 3

December 7
Engineering Internationalism: Colonialism, the Cold War, and UNESCO’s Victory in Nubia
American Academy in Rome
6:00pm

The Thomas Spencer Jerome Lecture Series is among the most prestigious international platforms for the presentation of new work on Roman history and culture. The Jerome Lectures are presented at both the American Academy in Rome and the University of Michigan. In 2021, the forty-eighth year of the lecture series, Lynn Meskell (2015 Resident), Penn Integrates Knowledge Professor in the School of Arts and Sciences and Professor of Historic Preservation in the Weitzman School of Design at the University of Pennsylvania, will discuss the ethics of global heritage and archaeology.

This series, entitled The Ethics of Heritage and Archaeology in Global Perspective, addresses the role of archaeology and heritage within international networks of social and political change from the legacies of colonialism, to Cold War tensions, to the era of neoliberalism. The lectures reveal how the discovery and salvage of sites worldwide has mobilized government, military, and corporate interests, in what Meskell describes as a form of archaeological adventurism. Employing case studies from the Middle East, India, and Europe, Meskell attempts to uncover the dense network of social, political, and economic agendas that are at play in preserving the past.

The first lecture, held on November 29, is entitled Imperialism, Internationalism, and Archaeology in the Un/Making of the Middle East. Archaeological materialities and imaginaries have been deeply entwined with both colonial rivalries and struggles for self-determination that continue to have lasting legacies. Neo-imperial ambitions in the Middle East and conflict over territory, religion, oil, and antiquities have similarly been accompanied by heritage claims. Throughout the twentieth century, foreign occupation and military conflict galvanized archaeological elites.

The second lecture, A Tale of Two Cities: The Fate of Delhi as UNESCO World Heritage, takes place on December 1. In June 2015, a nomination dossier entitled “Delhi’s Imperial Capital Cities,” combining the two imperial capitals of Shahjahanabad and New Delhi, was proposed for the UNESCO World Heritage List. In this lecture, Meskell traces the trajectory of the dossier and events surrounding its withdrawal to reveal the political imbrications of urban conservation, international institutions, neoliberal governance, and colonial histories. She situates Delhi’s heritage within the ambit of neoliberal governance that recalibrates and promotes urban heritage preservation, while similarly encouraging development and economic growth. The episode reveals tensions in this specific political moment over contemporary perceptions of imperial occupation and “foreign” empires, which plagued the dossier from the outset and continue to reverberate in India today. (This lecture will be held at the British School at Rome.)

The final Jerome lecture, on December 7, is entitled Engineering Internationalism: Colonialism, the Cold War, and UNESCO’s Victory in Nubia. Much has been written about UNESCO’s Nubian Campaign, from the heroism and humanism promoted by the agency’s own vast propaganda machine, to the competing narratives of national saviors whether the French or Americans, to Nubia as a theater for the Cold War, down to individual accounts by technocrats, bureaucrats, and archaeologists. What crystallized in UNESCO’s midcentury mission in Nubia was a material attempt to overcome the fissures that were already appearing in their postwar dream of a global peace.

Lynn Meskell was the 2015 American Academy in Rome Scholar in Residence and is currently PIK Professor of Anthropology in the School of Arts and Sciences and Professor of Historic Preservation in the Weitzman School of Design. At the Penn Museum she is curator in the Middle East and Asia sections. She is currently AD White Professor-at-Large at Cornell University (2019–25). Over the last decade Meskell has conducted an institutional ethnography of UNESCO World Heritage, tracing the politics of governance and sovereignty and the subsequent implications for multilateral diplomacy, international conservation, and heritage rights. Employing archival and ethnographic analysis, her award-winning book A Future in Ruins: UNESCO, World Heritage, and the Dream of Peace (New York: Oxford University Press, 2018) reveals UNESCO’s early forays into a one-world archaeology and its later commitments to global heritage.

Thomas Spencer Jerome (1864–1914) was an American lawyer and a lover of Roman history who lived on Capri from 1899 until his death. In his will, Jerome endowed a series of lectures to be jointly administered by the University of Michigan and the American Academy in Rome, to be delivered at both institutions. The revised lectures are published by the University of Michigan Press.

All lectures will be given in English.

This event, to be presented in person at the Academy as well as on Zoom, is free and open to the public. Please register for Zoom in advance. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the event.

The lecture series is co-organized with the British School at Rome.

Black and white logo with the letter B S R and the words British School at Rome

 

Notice

Space in the Lecture Room is limited, and seats are available on a first-come, first-served basis. If you plan to attend an event with a group of over six guests or students, please inform events [at] aarome.org with at least 48 hours prior notice so that special arrangements can be made.

Guests will be asked to comply with Covid-19 safety protocols for events:

  • Access to the Academy requires the presentation of a valid photo ID and a Green Pass
  • Masks are required when indoors, and temperature will be checked before entry
  • Visitor contact information may be shared for contact tracing

Please contact events [at] aarome.org with any questions.

Backpacks and luggage with dimensions larger than 40 x 35 x 15 cm (16 x 14 x 6 in.) are not permitted on the property. There are no locker facilities available.

Lynn Meskell – Engineering Internationalism: Colonialism, the Cold War, and UNESCO’s Victory in Nubia

Tuesday, December 7, 2021–6:00 PM
Villa Aurelia
Largo di Porta S. Pancrazio, 1
Rome, Italy
Composite of three images: color portrait of a light skinned, brown haired woman wearing a dark blazer and white shirt in the center, flanked by two black and white photographs of a crane moving a large stone Egyptian monument of a seated figure

Center: Lynn Meskell (photograph by Eric Sucar); left and right: UNESCO’s Nubian Monuments Campaign, Abu Simbel (photographs courtesy of Wikimedia Commons)

Lecture 1

November 29
Imperialism, Internationalism, and Archaeology in the Un/Making of the Middle East
American Academy in Rome
6:00pm

Lecture 2

December 1
A Tale of Two Cities: The Fate of Delhi as UNESCO World Heritage
British School at Rome
6:00pm

Lecture 3

December 7
Engineering Internationalism: Colonialism, the Cold War, and UNESCO’s Victory in Nubia
American Academy in Rome
6:00pm

The Thomas Spencer Jerome Lecture Series is among the most prestigious international platforms for the presentation of new work on Roman history and culture. The Jerome Lectures are presented at both the American Academy in Rome and the University of Michigan. In 2021, the forty-eighth year of the lecture series, Lynn Meskell (2015 Resident), Penn Integrates Knowledge Professor in the School of Arts and Sciences and Professor of Historic Preservation in the Weitzman School of Design at the University of Pennsylvania, will discuss the ethics of global heritage and archaeology.

This series, entitled The Ethics of Heritage and Archaeology in Global Perspective, addresses the role of archaeology and heritage within international networks of social and political change from the legacies of colonialism, to Cold War tensions, to the era of neoliberalism. The lectures reveal how the discovery and salvage of sites worldwide has mobilized government, military, and corporate interests, in what Meskell describes as a form of archaeological adventurism. Employing case studies from the Middle East, India, and Europe, Meskell attempts to uncover the dense network of social, political, and economic agendas that are at play in preserving the past.

The first lecture, held on November 29, is entitled Imperialism, Internationalism, and Archaeology in the Un/Making of the Middle East. Archaeological materialities and imaginaries have been deeply entwined with both colonial rivalries and struggles for self-determination that continue to have lasting legacies. Neo-imperial ambitions in the Middle East and conflict over territory, religion, oil, and antiquities have similarly been accompanied by heritage claims. Throughout the twentieth century, foreign occupation and military conflict galvanized archaeological elites.

The second lecture, A Tale of Two Cities: The Fate of Delhi as UNESCO World Heritage, takes place on December 1. In June 2015, a nomination dossier entitled “Delhi’s Imperial Capital Cities,” combining the two imperial capitals of Shahjahanabad and New Delhi, was proposed for the UNESCO World Heritage List. In this lecture, Meskell traces the trajectory of the dossier and events surrounding its withdrawal to reveal the political imbrications of urban conservation, international institutions, neoliberal governance, and colonial histories. She situates Delhi’s heritage within the ambit of neoliberal governance that recalibrates and promotes urban heritage preservation, while similarly encouraging development and economic growth. The episode reveals tensions in this specific political moment over contemporary perceptions of imperial occupation and “foreign” empires, which plagued the dossier from the outset and continue to reverberate in India today. (This lecture will be held at the British School at Rome.)

The final Jerome lecture, on December 7, is entitled Engineering Internationalism: Colonialism, the Cold War, and UNESCO’s Victory in Nubia. Much has been written about UNESCO’s Nubian Campaign, from the heroism and humanism promoted by the agency’s own vast propaganda machine, to the competing narratives of national saviors whether the French or Americans, to Nubia as a theater for the Cold War, down to individual accounts by technocrats, bureaucrats, and archaeologists. What crystallized in UNESCO’s midcentury mission in Nubia was a material attempt to overcome the fissures that were already appearing in their postwar dream of a global peace.

Lynn Meskell was the 2015 American Academy in Rome Scholar in Residence and is currently PIK Professor of Anthropology in the School of Arts and Sciences and Professor of Historic Preservation in the Weitzman School of Design. At the Penn Museum she is curator in the Middle East and Asia sections. She is currently AD White Professor-at-Large at Cornell University (2019–25). Over the last decade Meskell has conducted an institutional ethnography of UNESCO World Heritage, tracing the politics of governance and sovereignty and the subsequent implications for multilateral diplomacy, international conservation, and heritage rights. Employing archival and ethnographic analysis, her award-winning book A Future in Ruins: UNESCO, World Heritage, and the Dream of Peace (New York: Oxford University Press, 2018) reveals UNESCO’s early forays into a one-world archaeology and its later commitments to global heritage.

Thomas Spencer Jerome (1864–1914) was an American lawyer and a lover of Roman history who lived on Capri from 1899 until his death. In his will, Jerome endowed a series of lectures to be jointly administered by the University of Michigan and the American Academy in Rome, to be delivered at both institutions. The revised lectures are published by the University of Michigan Press.

All lectures will be given in English.

This event, to be presented in person at the Academy as well as on Zoom, is free and open to the public. Please register for Zoom in advance. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the event.

The lecture series is co-organized with the British School at Rome.

Black and white logo with the letter B S R and the words British School at Rome

 

Notice

Space in the Villa Aurelia is limited, and seats are available on a first-come, first-served basis. If you plan to attend an event with a group of over six guests or students, please inform events [at] aarome.org with at least 48 hours prior notice so that special arrangements can be made.

Guests will be asked to comply with Covid-19 safety protocols for events:

  • Access to the Academy requires the presentation of a valid photo ID and a Super Green Pass
  • Masks are required when indoors, and temperature will be checked before entry
  • Visitor contact information may be shared for contact tracing

Please contact events [at] aarome.org with any questions.

Backpacks and luggage with dimensions larger than 40 x 35 x 15 cm (16 x 14 x 6 in.) are not permitted on the property. There are no locker facilities available.

Robin Lane Fox – The Natural World: Pagans and Christians – Signs and Catastrophes

Monday, November 12, 2018–6:00 PM
AAR Lecture Room
McKim, Mead & White Building
Via Angelo Masina, 5
Rome, Italy
Robin Lane Fox – The Natural World: Pagans and Christians – Signs and Catastrophes

Detail of an Antioch mosaic (526–40 CE) at the Worcester Art Museum

The Thomas Spencer Jerome Lectures Series is among the most prestigious international platforms for the presentation of new work on Roman history and culture. They are presented at both the American Academy in Rome and the University of Michigan. In 2018, the forty-fifth year of the lecture series, Robin Lane Fox, a noted scholar of ancient history, will discuss the natural world in pagan and Christian Rome.

The lectures will explore the differing approaches to the natural world by pagans and the early Christians, from Paul and the Gospels to circa 500 CE. They will bring out differing emphases in their respective writings and art and will ask what practical effects such different ways of seeing had on contemporary life.

The first lecture, “Cosmos and Landscape,” will delve into pagan and Christian views of creation. It will also investigate the dominance of humankind over the beasts and the vegetal world, as well as modern theories of a shift from a horizontal view to a vertical perspective of the relation between the natural world and the divine, which Christianity endorsed. In the second lecture, “Animal and Vegetable,” Lane Fox will address the hierarchy and symbolism of animals and plants in pagan and Christian art. The impact of these views on both groups’ experience, including martyrs and Christian holy men in isolated settings, will be considered. (Please note that the second lecture will be held at the British School at Rome.) The final lecture, “Signs and Catastrophes,” will reflect upon the previous two and compare omens and signs, prodigies and miracles, in pagan and Christian worldviews. A particular focus will be explanations of natural catastrophes, including volcanic and seismic disasters, which are still part of our world today. The lecture will conclude with reflections on the end of the world and the perverted natural symbols used to address it.

Robin Lane Fox is an ancient historian and gardening writer best known for his works on Alexander the Great. He is an emeritus fellow of New College, Oxford, and a reader in ancient history at the University of Oxford. A fellow and tutor in ancient history at New College from 1977 to 2014, Fox now serves as garden master and as extraordinary lecturer in ancient history for both New and Exeter Colleges. His major publications, for which he has won literary prizes, include studies of Alexander the Great and ancient Macedon, Christianity and Paganism, and the Greek Dark Ages. His most recent book, published in 2015, concerns the patristic author Augustine of Hippo. Lane Fox is also the gardening correspondent of the Financial Times.

Thomas Spencer Jerome (1864–1914) was an American lawyer and a lover of Roman history who lived on Capri from 1899 until his death. In his will he endowed a series of lectures to be jointly administered by the University of Michigan and the American Academy in Rome, to be delivered at both institutions. The revised lectures are typically published by the University of Michigan Press.

All lectures will be given in English.

Robin Lane Fox – The Natural World: Pagans and Christians – Animal and Vegetable

Thursday, November 8, 2018–6:00 PM
British School at Rome
Via Antonio Gramsci, 61
Rome, Italy
Robin Lane Fox – The Natural World: Pagans and Christians – Cosmos and Landscape

Detail of an Antioch mosaic (526–40 CE) at the Worcester Art Museum

The Thomas Spencer Jerome Lectures Series is among the most prestigious international platforms for the presentation of new work on Roman history and culture. They are presented at both the American Academy in Rome and the University of Michigan. In 2018, the forty-fifth year of the lecture series, Robin Lane Fox, a noted scholar of ancient history, will discuss the natural world in pagan and Christian Rome.

The lectures will explore the differing approaches to the natural world by pagans and the early Christians, from Paul and the Gospels to circa 500 CE. They will bring out differing emphases in their respective writings and art and will ask what practical effects such different ways of seeing had on contemporary life.

The first lecture, “Cosmos and Landscape,” will delve into pagan and Christian views of creation. It will also investigate the dominance of humankind over the beasts and the vegetal world, as well as modern theories of a shift from a horizontal view to a vertical perspective of the relation between the natural world and the divine, which Christianity endorsed. In the second lecture, “Animal and Vegetable,” Lane Fox will address the hierarchy and symbolism of animals and plants in pagan and Christian art. The impact of these views on both groups’ experience, including martyrs and Christian holy men in isolated settings, will be considered. (Please note that the second lecture will be held at the British School at Rome.) The final lecture, “Signs and Catastrophes,” will reflect upon the previous two and compare omens and signs, prodigies and miracles, in pagan and Christian worldviews. A particular focus will be explanations of natural catastrophes, including volcanic and seismic disasters, which are still part of our world today. The lecture will conclude with reflections on the end of the world and the perverted natural symbols used to address it.

Robin Lane Fox is an ancient historian and gardening writer best known for his works on Alexander the Great. He is an emeritus fellow of New College, Oxford, and a reader in ancient history at the University of Oxford. A fellow and tutor in ancient history at New College from 1977 to 2014, Fox now serves as garden master and as extraordinary lecturer in ancient history for both New and Exeter Colleges. His major publications, for which he has won literary prizes, include studies of Alexander the Great and ancient Macedon, Christianity and Paganism, and the Greek Dark Ages. His most recent book, published in 2015, concerns the patristic author Augustine of Hippo. Lane Fox is also the gardening correspondent of the Financial Times.

Thomas Spencer Jerome (1864–1914) was an American lawyer and a lover of Roman history who lived on Capri from 1899 until his death. In his will he endowed a series of lectures to be jointly administered by the University of Michigan and the American Academy in Rome, to be delivered at both institutions. The revised lectures are typically published by the University of Michigan Press.

All lectures will be given in English.

Robin Lane Fox – The Natural World: Pagans and Christians – Cosmos and Landscape

Tuesday, November 6, 2018–6:00 PM
Villa Aurelia
Largo di Porta S. Pancrazio, 1
Rome, Italy
Robin Lane Fox – The Natural World: Pagans and Christians – Cosmos and Landscape

Detail of an Antioch mosaic (526–40 CE) at the Worcester Art Museum

The Thomas Spencer Jerome Lectures Series is among the most prestigious international platforms for the presentation of new work on Roman history and culture. They are presented at both the American Academy in Rome and the University of Michigan. In 2018, the forty-fifth year of the lecture series, Robin Lane Fox, a noted scholar of ancient history, will discuss the natural world in pagan and Christian Rome.

The lectures will explore the differing approaches to the natural world by pagans and the early Christians, from Paul and the Gospels to circa 500 CE. They will bring out differing emphases in their respective writings and art and will ask what practical effects such different ways of seeing had on contemporary life.

The first lecture, “Cosmos and Landscape,” will delve into pagan and Christian views of creation. It will also investigate the dominance of humankind over the beasts and the vegetal world, as well as modern theories of a shift from a horizontal view to a vertical perspective of the relation between the natural world and the divine, which Christianity endorsed. In the second lecture, “Animal and Vegetable,” Lane Fox will address the hierarchy and symbolism of animals and plants in pagan and Christian art. The impact of these views on both groups’ experience, including martyrs and Christian holy men in isolated settings, will be considered. (Please note that the second lecture will be held at the British School at Rome.) The final lecture, “Signs and Catastrophes,” will reflect upon the previous two and compare omens and signs, prodigies and miracles, in pagan and Christian worldviews. A particular focus will be explanations of natural catastrophes, including volcanic and seismic disasters, which are still part of our world today. The lecture will conclude with reflections on the end of the world and the perverted natural symbols used to address it.

Robin Lane Fox is an ancient historian and gardening writer best known for his works on Alexander the Great. He is an emeritus fellow of New College, Oxford, and a reader in ancient history at the University of Oxford. A fellow and tutor in ancient history at New College from 1977 to 2014, Fox now serves as garden master and as extraordinary lecturer in ancient history for both New and Exeter Colleges. His major publications, for which he has won literary prizes, include studies of Alexander the Great and ancient Macedon, Christianity and Paganism, and the Greek Dark Ages. His most recent book, published in 2015, concerns the patristic author Augustine of Hippo. Lane Fox is also the gardening correspondent of the Financial Times.

Thomas Spencer Jerome (1864–1914) was an American lawyer and a lover of Roman history who lived on Capri from 1899 until his death. In his will he endowed a series of lectures to be jointly administered by the University of Michigan and the American Academy in Rome, to be delivered at both institutions. The revised lectures are typically published by the University of Michigan Press.

All lectures will be given in English.

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