Tuesday, February 26, 2013

The Fred Winter Collection

"Alinda, acropolis, the large tower of the edge of the cliff" (Professor Fred Winter 1968)

Friday, February 22, 2013

The Thessalian Goddess on Horseback and Archaeology in the News

Our next Institute lecture is this coming Wednesday evening, the 27th, at 7:30 PM. We are very pleased to have Gino Canlas, our Alföldi-Rosenbaum Fellow this year speak on the subject of dissertation research. He is a doctoral student at the University of British Columbia. In his lecture, entitled “The Goddess on Horseback: the Spread of the Cult of the Thessalian Goddess Enodia”, he will explore the archaeological and epigraphical data for this unique regional deity who carried a torch. Originally restricted to eastern Thessaly, Enodia became one of the most important Thessalian deities in the 4th century BC and her cult spread throughout Thessaly and beyond. This lecture will revisit the previous scholarship on the cult and discuss the reasons for its spread by examining the evidence for the nature of the cult in and out of Thessaly.

We will learn what Gino has uncovered concerning Enodia in the growing stack of journals and books that have engulfed him in the CIG library over the past five months!

Some effects of the "Greek Economic Crisis" on access to archaeological sites and museums
Archaeology in the Mediterranean basin frequently has a contentious relationship with construction activities and, especially, with large scale development projects. The long history of habitation, combined with the substantial architectural remains of Greek, and more so Roman and later, urbanism has created a landscape densely populated with archaeological remains. While many are known, many more archaeological sites await discovery. These antiquities are among the prominent drawing cards that the national tourist organizations use to lure visitors to their countries. The monumental public and religious architecture of an imperial Roman city is particularly impressive and photogenic.

For Greece, its long and rich past, as Prof. Dr. Yiannis Hamilakis (University of Southhampton) and others have argued, has been used repeatedly in its modern history to define its national identity and to support its status in the international community. The ruins of “Classical” Greece, where democracy was born and the people ruled, are presented as timeless exemplars of the many remarkable achievements that ancient Greek culture gave to western civilization. The extensive network of archaeological sites and museums that the Greek state has developed throughout the country over the past half century provides visitors and citizens alike with many potential opportunities to interact with this rich and diverse cultural heritage.

As I pointed out last year the economic crisis that has engulfed Greece since 2009 has had collateral damage to almost every aspect of life here, in particular services. Few ministries have been spared from reductions in their budgets and employees. The Ministry of Education, Religious Affairs, Culture and Sport through its General Secretariat of Culture is responsible for cultural heritage, in general, and archaeological sites and museums, in particular. Staff shortages have resulted in the temporary closing of many of the regional museums and of the smaller archaeological sites. Shorter opening hours are the norm for those that remain open. The National Museum in Athens and the Archaeological Museum in Thessaloniki do not have all of their galleries open on each day. The campaigns of the Ministry of Tourism to draw tourists here to invigorate the economy are set against the reduction of the access to the touted cultural heritage by another Ministry. A workable model for long-term sustainability is needed for Greece’s cultural heritage and the sectors of the economy dependent upon it.

A major preservation conundrum in Thessaloniki
In Thessaloniki there is a dispute now over what to do with some spectacular architectural remains that have been found underneath the streets during the construction of the city’s Metro. This city has a long, vibrant history stretching from the Hellenistic period to the present. Under the Roman Empire and its Byzantine successor the city was a major center in southeastern Europe with important political, administrative and economic functions. As a result all of the features of Roman and Early Byzantine urbanism were present: orthogonal grid layout, agora, forum, odeion, imperial palace, hippodrome, theater, marble-paved portico streets with shops behind, triumphal arch, tetrapylon, rotunda, mosaic floors, Christian basilicas, etc. These are the type of ruins that tourists go to Turkey, Jordan, Tunisia, Libya, Algeria, Syria and Lebanon to see.

The construction of the Metro station at Venizelos Street has revealed extensive, well-preserved architectural remains. Here, where the east/west running, marble-paved main thoroughfare of the city (decumanus) intersected with the main north/south street to the port, stood a monumental tetrapylon. Major public buildings stood along the street. Associated with this structure are shops dating to the 6th-9th centuries A.D. What should be done with these impressive and important remains? This is a classic collision of developmental needs, construction deadlines, cost and cultural heritage preservation. The Central Archaeological Council of Greece which makes recommendations to the Minister for decisions relating to heritage matters proposed that the remains from this stretch of the road be removed so the construction work can continue as planned. Their suggestion was that they would then be reconstructed on an ex-army camp outside of the city at some distance. This idea has enraged many residents and officials of Thessaloniki who believe that these important remains should be saved in situ, can be safe-guarded from the Metro and a cost-effective repositioning of the station can be found. With the support of the Board of Directors of the Kentro Byzantinon Erevnon of the Artistoleian University of Thessaloniki and Dr. Polyzeni Adam-Veleni, Director of the Thessaloniki Archaeological Museum , the Association of Greek Archaeologists have started a petition campaign to reverse the recommendation to bolster the other efforts in Thessaloniki. There is a facebook group, “ΝΑ ΣΩΣΟΥΜΕ ΤΟ ΙΣΤΟΡΙΚΟ ΚΕΝΤΡΙΚΟ ΣΤΑΥΡΟΔΡΟΜΙ ΤΗΣ ΘΕΣΣΑΛΟΝΙΚΗΣ” that is supporting this effort as well. It appears that almost 8,000 individuals have signed the petition so far. Check out this preservation conundrum and follow your conscience.

David Rupp

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Thursday, February 14, 2013

2013 CIG Graduate Student Conference and British Archaeologists in Greece

The annual CIG Graduate Student conference will take place this Saturday, the 16th, at Brock University in St. Catharines, Ontario. These conferences provide opportunities for graduate students to share the fruits of their research with other graduate students from across Canada and the United States. They are organized at each venue by the students at the university with the assistance of the Institute.

This year’s theme is Revolutions and Revelations. Prof. Benjamin Kelly (York University) will give the keynote address entitled “Punishing Revolution: Repressing Riots, Revolts, and Rebellions in the Roman World”. Our undergraduate intern from the fall, Rachel Dewan (Wilfrid Laurier University) will give a paper entitled “Into the West: The Development of Greek Colonization, Archaic Trade Networks, and Ethnic Relations at Pithekoussai”. Go Rachel!!!

The conference will take place on Saturday, February 16, 2013, from 9:30 am to 4:45 pm at the Sankey Chamber on the Brock University campus. For more information you can contact cigbrock@gmail.com. So, if you are in the Niagara Peninsula on Saturday, climb up the Niagara escarpment and see what the next generation of North American archaeologists and classicists are up to in their research efforts!

The activities of British archaeologists in Greece in the 1930s and 1940s
The 2012/13 lecture program of the Sillogos Filon tou Istorikou Archeiou tis Archaiologikis Ipiresias continues on Monday, February 18th with a lecture in Greek by Stavroula Masouridi, an archaeologist working at Directorate of the National Archive of Monuments (General Secretariat of Culture – MEDTHPA). Her lecture, using the archives of the Historical Archive, focuses on the work of the archaeologists associated with British School of Archaeology at sites such as Mycenae and Knossos during the 1930s and 1940s and their interactions with their Greek archaeologist colleagues.

The lecture will be at 6:30 PM at the Historical Archive at Odos Psaromylingou 22 near Odos Peiraeos on the border of Kerameikos and Psyrri. The Thesion Electric Train station is close by. See you there!

David Rupp

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

The Fred Winter Collection

"Pella, house with Ionic courtyard (House of Dionysos)" (Professor Fred Winter 1968)

Friday, February 8, 2013

Glenn Gould on the Big Screen and CIG is Growing in Quebec

Our much awaited annual Canadian film night will take place on Wednesday evening the 13th. This year we will show an award winning documentary from 2009 of the life and music of the internationally acclaimed pianist Glenn Gould. As the film’s website (http://glenngouldmovie.com/) says, “Genius Within: The Inner Life of Glenn Gould weaves together an unprecedented array of never before seen footage of Gould, photographs and excerpts from his private home recordings and diaries plus personal interviews with Gould’s most intimate friends and lovers, some who have never spoken about him publicly before, to reconstruct his thoughts on music, art, society, love, and life.” This 109 minute film in English was directed by Michèle Hozer and Peter Raymond.

Come and join us for an injection of pure, unadulterated Canadian content into your thirsty soul!!!

CIG is growing in Quebec!
The Institute is an organization that was founded in 1974 to support and to promote the research interests of Canadian scholars in Greece as well as to facilitate the interactions of Canadians and Greeks on a bicultural level. The Institute’s membership comes from a mixture of institutional and individual members throughout Canada. I am pleased to announce that our institutional ranks in the Province of Quebec have been joined by John Abbott College (or CEGEP John Abbott) as a Category B institutional member. Professor William (Bill) Russell of the Department of History and Classics is the organizing force here. We welcome them warmly to CIG and look forward to working with Bill, his colleagues and their students.

The Institute now has 13 Category A and 3 Category B Institutional members. We encourage other academic institutions in Quebec as well as in the other provinces to swell our ranks!

David Rupp

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

The Fred Winter Collection

"Pergamon, Lower Agora, collection of artillery-balls-from area of the arsenals" (Professor Fred Winter 1966)

Friday, February 1, 2013

Winter/Spring Program of the Athens Association of Friends of CIG

Kalo Mina! It is hard to believe that February is upon us already! That means that the 2013 Winter/Spring Program of the Athens Association of Friends of CIG will commence shortly. We have three interesting and different events planned for our loyal friends and supporters.

We will start with our annual Canadian film night on Wednesday, February 13th at 7:30 pm. The selection for this year is “Genius Within: the Inner Life of Glenn Gould” (109 minutes; in English; 2009). This is an award winning musical and biographical documentary on the mysterious and influential Canadian pianist Glenn Gould. It was directed by Michèle Hozer and Peter Raymond.

On March 13th we will have a lecture by Mark Hammond, who is a PhD Candidate at the Department of Art History and Archaeology of the University of Missouri-Columbia. My former student from Brock University will speak on the topic of his dissertation research on pottery from ancient Corinth. The lecture is entitled “The ‘Fabric’ of Economic Activity: Tracing Systems of Ceramic Distribution in Late Roman Panayia Field, Corinth”. Using the excavated area of Panayia Field at ancient Corinth as a case study, Mark will present a near-complete picture of both the various sources that supplied Corinth with ceramics, and the types of products available from each. He is interested in constructing the regional economic networks that provided the residents of the city with the pottery they needed in the period from the 4th through 7th centuries AD.

Our former Secretary Maria Tolis, who now works at the Museum of Cycladic Art, has arranged for us for a guided tour in English of the “Princesses of the Mediterranean in the Dawn of History” exhibition at the Museum on Thursday, March 28th at 6:30 pm. This exhibition presents the material possessions of real women from the ancient Mediterranean area. These were not mythical or other figures, but women who were born and who lived. They were “princesses” surely in their own minds and possibly in the minds of others. Ostentatious display to project one’s status in life and in death, especially for women, has a very long history indeed!

It should be noted that the group will be limited to a maximum of 30 persons, and each participant will be charged €3.50 for the tour. You can reserve your place by calling 210 7223201 or emailing ad@cig-icg.gr. The places on the tour will be allocated strictly on a first-come, first-served basis.

We look forward to seeing our friends and supporters at these events. Please tell your friends and colleagues about these opportunities for enlightenment!

David Rupp