A Million Hits on YouTube…Animation and Teaching Roman History

By Ray Laurence

What happens when the son of a Professor of Roman History brings home his Key Stage 2 project on the Romans?  First thing, wife of Professor reveals to school Zak’s dad is slipping in and out of the school without mentioning the fact he may know a little about the Romans.   Next step, school arranges for him to face down Year 3 for one lesson and for him to wonder: what on earth to say – luckily son on hand to give forthright advice.  After much thought, it is set-up – explain what it is like to be a Roman child aged 7.  Of course, this is the first age at which girls could be betrothed to boys some 10 years older than them – visualised by the concept of the large teenagers the kids see going to the secondary school.  Third thing – do the lesson – a real blast of questions, interruptions, and so on.  Everybody is happy.  Roman project gets done too via going to British Museum  (A-Z of Roman Objects).   Job done, but then I met the animators.

Andrew Park set up an animation company in Folkestone a few years ago called Cognitive.  His story of how he ended up doing this is set out in this TED Talk.  He has kids in primary school too and we talked about my research and explaining Roman childhood.  This became an idea that was pitched to TED.Ed, who marry together ‘educators’ and ‘animators’ to produce short films with big ideas.  Luckily they said yes and I wrote the script, recorded the script with the help of Cognitive and the drawing began.  Every so often, I would get a phone call or email from Andrew with a question: ‘What would be in the side-street?’  Answer: ‘boxing’ – we know Augustus liked to watch it; and another question:  ‘Is it ok to put a polar bear in the bath-house?’   Maps were sent to Cognitive, images of reconstructions and so on and at the end of October 2012 the film was released.

Job done – you would think, especially with a second film released in 2013.  But, oh no – 3 years later we realised there were over 1000 comments on YouTube discussing all sorts of stuff:  the position of the Subura, whether Roman statues were painted, a dose of misogyny, a touch of racial stereo-typing to racism, a little dislike of my voice, and the final comment that caused me to do something: ‘Islam invented arranged marriages’.  I’m working on setting up the means to link the film to resources that explain key themes that are embedded in the film.  Thus, if teachers are using the film for homework, pupils can have access to key texts, short passages, a quiz and discussions.    However, to take this all a bit further – why not have homework based on the writing of an animation script?  A kind teacher piloted this for me and next year I hope to run a script-writing competition. University of Kent has stumped up some prize money and over the summer I will have to get my act together to roll this out.   Please get in touch by email, if you are a teacher who uses this animation for teaching – I’d like to hear your views and what you would like to have in terms of resources built around these films.

Ray Laurence is Professor of Roman History and Archaeology at the University of Kent

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Sam Hood translation prize 2015

Readers are invited to submit entries for the 2015 Sam Hood translation prize.

The judges are keen to encourage elegant and stylish translations from Greek and Latin prose and verse.  Try your hand at translating any one of the following passages (verse passages may be translated into either verse or prose, as you consider most appropriate):

Horace Epode 3
Virgil Eclogue 1.1-17
Petronius Cena Trimalchionis 62 from ‘Sed, quod coeperam dicere’ to ‘non si me occidisses’.
Iliad 8 66-77
Sophocles Antigone 781-801
Thucydides 7.29.3-5

Texts of these passages can be found here, but you may use any text that is available to you, provided that you include a copy of the text you have translated with your translation.

The judges will be looking for accuracy but also, and especially, for creativity when making their decisions.  The competition is open to anyone under 19, still in full-time pre-university education.  Entries should contain a statement from a teacher confirming that this is the case.  The prizewinner will receive not only a cheque for £75 but also a book of classical poetry.

Entries should be sent to:

Dr Katherine Clarke
St. Hilda’s College
OXFORD
OX4 1DY 

by 9th July 2015.

The 2014 competition had a bumper entry.  The winner was Tatiana Sherwood of Haileybury School, with the translation of Juvenal Satires 3. 190-202 that appears below.  The runner-up with the judges’ commendation was Jack Keen, of St Paul’s School, with a translation of a passage of Xenophon’s Hellenica into clear rhythmical prose.

Congratulations to them both! 

Juvenal Satires 3. 190-202
translated by Tatiana Sherwood

Who fears or has ever feared
Their house tumbling down,
In cool Whitby,
Or amongst the shady hills at Brockenhurst,
Or in straightforward Darlington,
Or on the sloping plain of the Peaks?

But we live in a city, mainly bolstered up by
Flute-thin props.
For this is how the landlord stops the house from
Tottering over,
Papering over the old crack’s yawn,
Telling us to sleep untroubled
In a block on the verge of
Tumbling down.

We must live where there are no fires,
No fear each night.
Your neighbour is already shouting
‘Fire!’; already moving his odds and ends;
Your third-floor flat is already full of smoke
And you have no idea.
For if the alarm starts from the ground floor,
The last to burn will be protected
By just one tile from the rain,
Where the soft doves lay their eggs.
 

 

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The Cambridge Greek Lexicon Project

By Professor Richard Hunter FBA

The Cambridge Greek Lexicon Project will make available, both in print and online, an entirely new Greek-English lexicon, aimed at everyone who wants to read, learn or teach Greek, based on a re-reading of the ancient sources and organised on modern semantic principles.

The Project in its earliest form was the brainchild of John Chadwick, who originally envisaged a revision of the old Intermediate Greek Lexicon of Liddell and Scott, but it soon became clear to Dr Chadwick and to Dr Anne Thompson, who has worked for Project since 1998, that a quite new methodology was needed, and one which abandoned the traditional practice of patchwork revision of inherited material. Since the early days, the scope and ambition of the Project have increased out of all recognition. The Project is now housed in two offices within the Faculty of Classics at Cambridge, where a very dedicated team of researchers are nearing the end of their labours. As well as Dr Thompson, the team currently consists of James Diggle, who has been working full-time on the Project since his retirement and who leads the Project team, Robert Crellin, whose research was on the Greek tense system, Bruce Fraser, who carries primary responsibility for the electronic and technological side, Patrick James, whose research field is diachronic change in Greek morphology, Oliver Simkin, an expert in historical philology and etymology, and Simon Westripp, a recent graduate from the Faculty.

From the first, it was envisaged that the Lexicon would be published in digital as well as in print form, and early on an agreement to link the Lexicon to the Perseus Digital Library was signed. In addition to the use of the Perseus database, Bruce Fraser designed an innovative, highly granular XML editing system which is used in writing each entry and which translates the guiding lexicographic principles into XML coding to produce a dedicated structure for every type of lexicon entry, specific to each part of speech. This helps the writers to maintain consistency as they compose and will result in a layout which will be clear and accessible for users at every level of Greek knowledge. The Lexicon will be published in hard copy by Cambridge University Press and discussions about further digital platforms are currently on-going. The team will deliver the final files to CUP in the summer of 2016.

Throughout its existence the Project has been funded by both the Faculty of Classics and a host of donors, both major societies and foundations (such as The Mellon Foundation) and very generous individual supporters. The confidence and support offered by The Classical Association has always been a tremendous boost to the Project team, and we are very grateful indeed. If you would like to learn more please consult the Project website at

http://www.classics.cam.ac.uk/research/projects/glp

or contact Professor Richard Hunter (rlh10@cam.ac.uk).

Richard Hunter is Regius Professor of Greek in the Faculty of Classics, University of Cambridge, and Chair of the Committee of Management of the Cambridge Greek Lexicon Project.

The Classical Association is a major giver of grants to classical projects, mainly but not exclusively in the UK.  Much of its grant money is invested in a small number of major projects, including the Cambridge Greek Lexicon Project, which have been considered to be of fundamental benefit to the discipline. 

 

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The CA and the NordClass Initiative

In February this year the Classical Association’s Honorary Secretary, Dr Emma Stafford (Leeds), attended the inaugural meeting of NordClass at Göteberg University, alongside delegates from Sweden, Norway, Denmark and Finland.  She had been invited to talk about the history and current running of the CA, by way of inspiration for discussions about the setting up of a new pan-Scandinavian classical body.

Several of the constituent countries already have classical associations, of varying age and size, and often separate associations for school-teachers.  However, given the relatively small populations of the individual countries, and their close cultural links, there is a role for an umbrella organisation which might provide classicists across Scandinavia with mutual support and a stronger political voice.

The talk ‘Creating and Sustaining a Classical Association: the UK Experience’ drew on the centenary volume edited by Christopher Stray, The Classical Association: the first century 1903-2003, Greece and Rome Supplement (Oxford 2003) for an account of the Association’s history, but Emma was in a good position to bring the story up to date, having been Publicity Officer from 2004 before taking on her current role.

 

 

You can see Emma’s powerpoint presentation here

The discussions ran over two days, encompassing both strategic and practical issues.  Unlike the CA, NordClass will not have the benefit of income from the publication of academic journals, although it may be able to access at least some start-up funding.  Nonetheless, it was felt that much could be achieved in the first instance by the establishment of an information portal.  If there is a good response to this first phase, some kind of conference might be considered.  An interesting question for the external observer was that of what language should be adopted for the new body’s official communications.  The short answer is that English is these days the lingua franca, especially amongst younger Scandinavians, but it was agreed that use of the local languages, e.g. in advertising specific events, would be important for widening access.

As you may have seen, Percy the CA Bear attended the event too, and tweeted his progress! Two Percies are now in the possession of the children of NordClass’s first chair, Karin Westin Tikkanen (Göteberg).

 

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World Cinema 2015

by Mr Philip Hooker

The Oscars are over, film buffs have been identifying the films which are due to emerge in 2015. These are the ones with classical themes.

We start with Christopher Honore’s Metamorphoses, briefly mentioned in the last CA News.   This is a collection of stories from Ovid, in modern times, with a non-professional cast.   It appeared at several of the major film festivals (including London) last autumn and had a release in France in September.  Will it gain a UK release?  Reviewers were not very enthusiastic, they found it all a bit baffling, so probably not.

Just out on a UK release is the latest film to depict not just a teacher, but, for extra poignancy, a classics teacher.   We have had Kevin Kline in The Emperor’s Club and Anthony Hopkins in The Human Stain (and previously Mr Chips and Andrew Crocker-Harris); we now have Jennifer Lopez in The Boy Next Door.   She has just separated from her husband, a handsome young man moves in next door and the scene is set for an “erotic thriller”.    There are references to Oedipus and, at one point, he presents her with a fine copy of the Iliad, a first edition, no less.    “One of the worst movies of the year” opined one critic.

Rather more invigorating must be Dragon Blade, the big Chinese release for its new year, with Jackie Chan as the head of the Silk Road Protection Squad and John Cusack and Adrien Brody as Roman generals, warring among themselves, in 48 BC.    Actually, the Silk Road was not there then, the Roman empire was not contiguous to China and generals would never have enlisted the Parthians for assistance, but never mind the history, just enjoy the spectacle of a $60m production; it is said to be a bit like Gladiator, but with martial arts.   It might, just possibly, appear at the Terracotta Film Festival in London in May.

Then we have Asterix: le domaine des dieux, an animated film, released in France and much of Europe in November, all about the building of a new estate next to a village in Gaul to create a Roman city.    This one has had strong reviews and is said to be close to the spirit of the original, unlike the galumphing live action movies with Gerard Depardieu.   It has a UK release date of 21 June.

At the end of the year Ithaca will be released in the US; it stars Meg Ryan (who directs), Tom Hanks and Sam Shephard; it is a remake of William Saroyan’s The Human Comedy, filmed in 1943 with Mickey Rooney, loosely based on the Odyssey.

And the one which will appear in multiplexes (due 19 February 2016) is a new version of Ben Hur, directed by Timur Bekmambetov (a Russian, best known for his vampire movies) with Jack Huston, Rodrigo Santoro, Toby Kebbell and Pilou Asbaek, which has been filming at Cinecitta in Rome and at Matera, not, we hope, a Europudding.

Mr Hooker is the Hon. Treasurer of the Classical Association.  Look out for more of his posts covering Classics in the media!

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‘Teaching with Ancient Artefacts’: JACT INSET day for Secondary Teachers at the Ashmolean Museum

By Dr Jane Masséglia

Classics teachers are multi-taskers: in any given week they might be found teaching languages, literature, and history topics across a great chronological range. And yet, some will admit to being reluctant about using archaeological material in their classroom teaching. It may not have been part of their own school or university experience, and the prospect of learning new terminology can be daunting. But in the teaching of ancient history topics (e.g. the lives of ancient women, slavery or religion), evidence such as coins, tombstones, tools and ancient art, can be an important antidote to the elite male-dominated literary sources.

The Ashmolean Latin Inscriptions Project (AshLI) is a three year project, run jointly by the Ashmolean Museum, and Warwick and Oxford Universities, which aims to demystify epigraphy (the study of inscriptions), and produce teaching resources on Roman life which complement the Primary and Secondary curriculum.

On 22nd November, AshLI teamed up with JACT to host a one-day course at the Ashmolean Museum, for Classics teachers interested in teaching with ancient sculpture, coins and inscriptions. 38 Secondary teachers from all over the UK attended the event, which was free of charge, thanks to support from Warwick’s Centre for Advanced Study and Oxford Classics Outreach.

The day began with an opening lecture from Warwick’s Dr Dan Orrells on Winkelmann and the history of art appreciation, and was followed by a programme of museum-based sessions in the Ashmolean, delivered by a team of Warwick and Oxford academics. With postgraduate volunteers helping them to find their way between venues, every teacher attended three taught-sessions on different types of artefacts (sculpture, inscriptions and coins), and was allocated an additional slot to explore the museum at their own pace. Dr Zahra Newby led a session on ancient sculpture, focusing on the museum’s remarkable Cast Gallery, and its main antiquities galleries. The teachers were among the first groups to visit the recently redisplayed Greek Gallery which was reopened in October 2014. Prof. Alison Cooley and Dr Jane Masséglia led a session on reading inscriptions, using material from the Rome and Randolph Galleries. They showed how both large inscriptions on stone (such as tomb inscriptions written by friends and family members), and on much smaller items (such as votive plaques, water pipes and sling bullets from the Roman Civil War), could be used to enhance teaching about Roman social life, living conditions, religious practices and the experiences of Roman soldiers. Dr Clare Rowan gave the teachers a chance to get even closer to their material with a handling session in the Heberden Coin Room. She showed how ancient coins were produced, explained about denominations, and encouraged the teachers pick up and compare Greek and Roman coins from different mints and chronological periods. For many of the teachers, being allowed to handle an Athenian ‘owl’ (tetradrachm), was one of the highlights of the day.

Mai Musié, Oxford’s Classics Outreach Officer, was also there to remind teachers of the variety of talks, teaching sessions and support available to school groups, with both Warwick and Oxford offering visits to schools and welcoming school visitors to their Classics departments. Jo Rice, Head of Education at the Ashmolean, stressed the great range of opportunities for teachers planning a visit to the museum, including bespoke sessions to complement a particular topic being studied in school.

Written feedback from teachers showed the event to be a great success. The team is now planning a similar event for Primary teachers, and will be visiting the current PGCE cohort at King’s College London to show the trainee teachers how Latin inscriptions can be used in both history and language teaching. As for the ‘demystifying’ of ancient artefacts, the team were delighted to read among the participants’ comments: ‘I run a course called ‘An Introduction to the Classical World’ in my local comprehensive. I will now definitely add sessions on Inscriptions and Coins; I have previously been wary of both.

For more information on AshLI, and for stories about Roman life taken from Latin inscriptions, see the project blog ‘Reading, Writing, Romans’, http://bit.ly/AshLI-blog.

To book a school visit to the Ashmolean Museum: http://www.ashmolean.org/education/aboutus/howtoschools/

To arrange a visit to a University Classics Department, or for a speaker to visit your school:

(Oxford) http://www.classics.ox.ac.uk/Outreach.html
(Warwick) http://www2.warwick.ac.uk/fac/arts/classics/research/outreach/

Dr Jane Masséglia is Research Fellow, the Ashmolean Latin Inscription Project (AshLI) at the Ashmolean Museum and the Centre for the Study of Ancient Documents, University of Oxford

If you are planning a similar event take a look at the CA website for information about grants in aid of School-teaching and Outreach

 

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Spring Books 2015

by Mr Philip Hooker

The Bookseller has just published its Buyers’ Guide of books due in the first half of 2015.  These are books which publishers have nominated as books which should appeal to the general reader.  This note picks out some with classical themes which might have appeared as “Summer Reading” in a July CA News.

Top of the list – and highlighted – is Edith Hall’s Introducing the Ancient Greeks, which ranges from Bronze Age seafarers to the Navigation of the Western Mind, a 2000 year stretch.   She has identified ten of their characteristics and described them in ten chapters with different communities.   (Sense of humour, intriguingly, lies with the Spartans).  It was published in the US in July 2014; the UK launch event was at Kings College in December, it finally appears here on 2 April; the UK publicist calls this “Horrible Histories’ Groovy Greeks for grown-ups” which must seriously misrepresent its scholarship, erudition and originality.  Natalie Haynes and Paul Cartledge gave it enthusiastic reviews, James Romm was more mixed.

Next is Emily Wilson with The Greater Empire: A life of Seneca, a definitive, accessible, biography of the philosopher, politician and popular writer in the age of Nero, published in the US in October, due here in March.    And Guy de la Bedoyere with The Real Lives of Roman Britain – a set of individual personal stories, no military campaigns or imperial politics, due 15 May.

In the revived Pelican paperbacks, we now have Richard Jenkyns on Classical Literature; “an opinionated romp” said one reviewer.     Oliver Taplin, an accomplished poet, has verse translations of Sophocles’ Oedipus plays plus Ajax and Philoctetes, due from OUP in February; this is oddly not a World Classic, which series still relies on H D F Kitto’s 1962 version of the three most popular plays.  But it will have a new edition of Martial’s Epigrams from Gideon Nesbit (with parallel Latin text) in June. Penguin Classics has a new version of Apollonius’ Jason and the Argonauts by Aaron Poochigian in February, replacing the 1959 one from E V Rieu.

More populist works include Harry Mount’s Odyssey – ancient Greece in the footsteps of Odysseus, due July, a reprint of Dilys Powell’s 1973 classic Villa Ariadne, all about Knossos, Evans and Pendlebury, in June and the latest Lindsey Davis, Deadly Election, in April.   And Ian Jenkins’ The Body in Ancient Greece is the highly illustrated book of the British Museum exhibition, which runs from 26 March to 5 July.

In the Autumn, the big ones should be Mary Beard’s SPQR, to coincide with a BBC television series in November and Robert Harris’ Dictator, the final volume of his Cicero trilogy.

Mr Hooker is the Hon. Treasurer of the Classical Association and a regular contributor to CA News.  Look out for more of his posts covering Classics in the media!

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UK Theatre 2015

by Mr Philip Hooker

Programmes for UK theatre productions are mostly announced in November, too late for inclusion in a December CA News print article.   So this blog provides a better and timelier way of describing what classical works are in prospect for 2015.

We start with the London university colleges.   UCL has the Bacchae at the Bloomsbury Theatre from 10 February to 12 February.   This is the James Morwood version, directed by Emily Louizon.    Kings College London is offering the Clouds, directed by Oliver Harrington, at the Greenwood Theatre from 11 February to 13 February.

Then, at the Theatre Royal Stratford East, comes Antigone, a professional production, in a version by Roy Williams, which toured the provinces in the autumn and now comes in to London, from 19 February to 14 March.    This has a contemporary setting – a night club ruled by gang leader Kreo – and strong reviews (“chilling”, “powerful”, “incendiary”).  Mark Monero and Samantha Gordon-Libund are the leads.    Pilot Theatre will be arranging a live streaming of this production in March.     On 20 February, at the Theatre Royal Northampton, there will be a concert production of Odd, a new prize-winning musical by Chris Bush and Matt Winkworth.  16 year old Odessa is dragged from the Thames in a raging storm and then tells the incredible story of her 10 year journey home.

The big production – following the Helen McCrory Medea and the Kristin Scott-Thomas Electra – is the Juliette Binoche Antigone at the Barbican from 4 March to 28 March (all sold out).   This is a version by Anne Carson and is directed by Ivo van Hove, a very trendy director, whose A View from the Bridge has just transferred to the West End.   It then goes on a European tour and returns as a centrepiece of the Edinburgh Festival at the King’s Theatre from 9 to 22 August.   Some critics have been making ungallant remarks about the age of some of these stars and, thus, suitability for these roles, but this does not affect the box office.

And then we will have not one, but two, major productions of the Oresteia.   Both will be “streamlined” into a single play.   The first is at the Globe Playhouse, London, in an unspecified version, directed by Adele Thomas, who is best known for her version of The Knight of the Burning Pestle.      The Globe is an open-air Elizabethan-style playhouse, with cheap tickets for “groundlings” who stand and uncomfortable wooden benches, noises off from a nearby heliport and much audience interaction; performances tend to be lively.  This runs from 29 August to 16 October.      The other is at the new Home in Manchester (which replaces the Library Theatre and Cornerhouse cinemas).    This will be the Ted Hughes version, directed by Blanche McIntyre (a much-acclaimed young director), with “people of Manchester” forming the Chorus, running from 23 October to 14 November.   This would appear to be the superior production.

Mr Hooker is the Hon. Treasurer of the Classical Association and a regular contributor to CA News.  Look out for more of his posts covering Classics in the media!

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New CA Branch – Lytham St Annes

The latest branch of the country’s largest organisation for the promotion of classics – the Classical Association – is being formed in Lytham St Annes for the first time in the Association’s long and distinguished history.

And the driving force behind this newest branch isn’t a professor of Classics or Ancient History but a 17 year old sixth former – the youngest person to ever form a branch since the Association started in 1903!

Katrina Kelly from Fairhaven says she is delighted at how much interest there has already been in the new branch and is absolutely thrilled to announce that academic, author and broadcaster Dr Michael Scott has agreed to be president of the new Lytham St Annes branch.

Dr Scott, Associate Professor in Classics and Ancient History at the University of Warwick and famous for his documentaries on the classical world including the BBC 2 series, ‘Who were the Greeks?’ said: “It is an absolute delight to be president of the Lytham St Annes Classical Association branch. My mother’s family has its roots in this part of the world, and I am looking forward immensely to visiting in January 2015.”

He continued: “I would like to offer my congratulations to Katrina Kelly for taking the initiative in setting up this branch of the Classical Association, an organisation that does incredibly important work in connecting people with what is going on in the study of the ancient Greek and Roman worlds, and in supporting schools around the country so that students continue to have the opportunity to learn about these cultures, which have had such a massive effect on our world today.”

“I hope you will join me in wishing the Lytham St Annes Classical Association a long, happy and healthy future, and in giving it the support it so richly deserves.”

Dr Scott‘s lecture entitled Invisible Rome is part of an outstanding programme delivered by first class classicists from around the country including Dr Lindsay Allason-Jones OBE, historian, archaeologist and Time Team contributor from the University of Newcastle who will deliver the Association’s first lecture on The Women of Roman Britain at 7pm at AKS on Clifton Drive, Lytham St Annes on 2nd October.

Katrina, who is studying A levels at AKS, and is currently at Greek Summer School at King’s College, London, said she is “delighted that Dr Scott has accepted the role of president. We are confident that with the support of Dr Scott, all the inspiring lecturers who have agreed to be part of the inaugural programme and, most importantly all our new members, the first year of the LSA Classical Association will be a great success. We need 85 Founder Members so please come and join us: it only costs £12 a year for adults and £5 for students for free entry to seven monthly lectures – fantastic value for money!”

Barbara Finney, Branches’ Secretary of the Classical Association said they are delighted to welcome the new branch. “It is exciting to know that enthusiasm for Classics is bubbling up in this part of the world. On behalf of the Classical Association I wish Katrina Kelly and her fellow members every success and hope that they all gain as much enjoyment and stimulation from their pursuit of Classics as I and the other officers have over the years.”

 

The Lytham St Annes Classical Association can be contacted on facebook, twitter (@LSA_Classics) or by email at lsaclassics@gmail.com .

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Tweeting the CA Conference #CA14

In recent years, there’s been a lot of Twitter chat about the CA Conference, be it amusing shots of Percy Bear, livetweeting from the panels, or questions put to speakers via Twitter. We think this is great, and we want to encourage as many people as possible to get involved, so below is a set of guidelines intended to offer guidance to those new to Twitter and livetweeting, and to help them and more experienced Tweeters create a comprehensive and useful livefeed.

The Basics

  • Always tweet using the conference hashtag. For Nottingham, this is #CA14. Include this in all tweets you want included in the conference feed; anyone following the hashtag will see it, and it will be used to compile an archive of the conference tweets later.

  • If you are asked to stop livetweeting by a panel chair, a speaker or a conference attendee, please stop. Many are not comfortable with Twitter as a medium; its presence should not negatively impact the conference experience for other attendees, however positive we may feel about social media.

  • You can livetweet whatever you like about the conference – the papers, the plenaries, the social events…

  • You can tweet as little or as much as you like. A livetweeter who tweets half a dozen times over the whole conference is as important as one who tweets half a dozen times to thoroughly summarise a single paper.

  • You may find this article on livetweeting conferences in general helpful:

In Panels and Plenaries

  • Always begin your tweets of a paper with the speaker’s initials, to make it clear that you are reporting their argument. If a tweet gets widely retweeted, this makes sure the right person gets intellectual credit for the idea.

  • If the speaker is on Twitter, please use their Twitter handle when livetweeting – that will let people following on Twitter connect with them if they so wish.

  • If you are giving a paper, mention your Twitter handle as you begin.

  • Remember that the goal of livetweeting a paper is for somebody who isn’t in the room to be able to follow along with the speaker’s argument.

  • You may find that sitting at the back of a room makes you feel less self-conscious about tweeting; it may also make the process less obtrusive for other attendees.

  • Please make sure that your device is on ‘silent’.

  • Please demonstrate the usual high standards of professionalism, collegiality and courtesy that are the hallmarks of classicists as a discipline – that is, if you can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything at all.

  • It is fine to have multiple people livetweeting the same session.

  • Don’t try to livetweet your own paper. Trust us on this.

  • If anyone following along on Twitter asks a question, please feel free to ask that question of the speaker and report the answer back. However, be aware that questions from people in the room take precedence, and ask accordingly.

Outside Panels

  • Again, please demonstrate professionalism, collegiality and courtesy in everything you say.

  • Remember to ask permission before posting photographs.

  • Be mindful that people following the hashtag are interested in the academic aspects of the conference rather than what dinner looks like. Unless someone has made a scale replica of Troy in mashed potato. We all want to see that.

  • The Classical Association always welcomes innovative pictures of Percy the Bear attending conference!

 

We’re very grateful to Liz Gloyn (@lizgloyn) who compiled this list with help from the #CA14 Twitter community. You can follow the Classical Association on Twitter at @Classical_Assoc. The official 2014 conference Twitterfeed is @CAconf2014. The hashtag for the 2014 CA Conference in Nottingham is #CA14

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