Barbara Burrell holds a kylix while teaching

Dr. Barbara Burrell is offering an intimate look at artifacts of Ancient Greece through her in-person and online hybrid course. The archaeologist hosts students in a classroom only one day a week to have hands-on experience with UC's precious artifacts. The COVID-19 pandemic initially put a damper on in-person classes at UC. However, Dr. Burrell redesigned her archaeology course with the assistance of an Instructional Innovation Advisory Council award from the College of Arts and Sciences.

Access to such archaeological artifacts is unprecedented even without a global pandemic.

“Ordinarily, you’d have to volunteer at a museum to handle these artifacts. It’s a rare opportunity,” Dr. Burrell said. UC students are among very few who get to experience history so intimately. 

Photo of Alice Crowe with sherds from Knossos

PhD candidate Alice Crowe will be spending Fall 2020 at the British School at Athens' Knossos Research Center where she will conduct analysis on pottery sherds from around the settlement. By using evidence from multiple excavations and surveys, Crowe is building up to an examination of intra-site variances. She cites the impressive history of projects conducted at Knossos as the main reason such a large-scale project is possible. Crowe hopes to use her findings to determine the trajectory of the town over the course of the LM II-III period: did its extent contract and/or shift? If so, was the change gradual or punctuated, site-wide or localized? Crowe's dissertation is titled "Beyond the Walls of the Labyrinth: A Site-wide Perspective on Final Palatial and Postpalatial Knossos."

1977 Balloon photo of Kea

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John L. (Jack) Caskey began excavations at Ayia Irini on Kea, the nearest of the Cycladic islands to Athens, in 1960, just one year after leaving his post as director of the ASCSA and accepting a professorship at the University of Cincinnati. Already in that first campaign he demonstrated that Ayia Irini was one of the most important prehistoric sites ever excavated in Greece. In this 60th anniversary celebration the University of Cincinnati and the ASCSA celebrate the accomplishments of Caskey and his colleagues.

Those attending this Webinar will learn about the history of the excavations and will also get a glimpse of two new volumes in the series of KEOS excavation reports, one on miniature wall-paintings, the other on stratigraphy and the relations between the Cyclades and Crete. A short video by Kostantinos Tzortzinis will highlight the site of Ayia Irini as it appears today.

A painting of Antigone performing funeral rites on her slain brother

In early October UC Classics and the College-Conservatory of Music co-sponsored a Zoom presentation of "Antigone in Ferguson," a production by the acclaimed Theater of War. The production featured readings from Sophopcles' "Antigone" followed by a public forum which focused on relevance to today's issues of social justice. The production also featured performances by a choir composed on civic leaders from Ferguson, Missouri. The Theater of War aims to create discourse and healing regarding the death of Black Americans at the hands of the police. Dr. Brant Russell of CCM and Dr. Caitlin Hines of the Classics Department worked with Harvard, Georgetown, and Emory Universities to bring this production to students.

Valia Tsikritea, a graduate student at the UC Department of Classics, received a GSG Research Fellowship Award for research she will be conducting this summer at the BSA Research Center at Knossos, Crete. The Fellowship supports study towards her dissertation degree, titled "An Archaeology of Cult on Mt. Juktas, Crete in the Early Iron Age: Tradition, Pottery, and Figurines from the 'Tomb of Zeus.'" Her research focuses on the Greek archaeological site of Mt. Juktas, Crete, during the 12th-7th centuries BCE. It aims at producing one of the few comprehensive studies of material from an Early Iron Age sanctuary on Crete, a period in which the island underwent major changes in material culture and religious activity. Mt. Juktas, the peak sanctuary of Knossos, was one of the sanctuaries with the most long-lasting cultic activity in Crete and was frequented without interruption during the 12th-7th centuries. Through the study of pottery and ceramic figurines Tsikritea investigates the changes in cult practices during the Early Iron Age period and the role of Mt. Juktas in the formation of local identity. While on Crete this summer she will use the award to support her study of the pottery from the site at the Stratigraphical Museum at Knossos.