Association of Ancient Historians Annual Conference 2020

Thursday, April 23, 2020 (All day) to Saturday, April 25, 2020 (All day)
Via Zoom
n/a, IA 52240

NOTICE: This conference will now take place via Zoom, to minimize public health risk. The schedule below has not yet been updated to reflect the "venue" change. Please check back for the Zoom link and details.

The Association of Ancient Historians conference is the largest annual gathering of historians of Greco-Roman antiquity who are based in the United States and Canada. Panels are plenary, with specific panel topics decided by organizers. This year's theme is "A Global Antiquity," with panels including environmental history, long distance trade, and the geographies of conflict and warfare.

Keynote speakers: Walter Scheidel (Stanford University) and Jinyiu Liu (Depauw University) 

Panel Conveners: Lee Brice (WIU), Nandini Pandey (UW-Madison),  Jordan Rosenblum (UW-Madison), Georgia Tsouvala (ISU), Hannah Scates Kettler (Iowa State University), Thomas Rose (Randolph-Macon College), Adrienne Ho Rose (University of Iowa), Brenda Longfellow (University of Iowa), and Angela Ziskowski (Coe College)

Co-Chairs: Sarah E. Bond (History, UI) and Rosemary Moore (History & Classics, UI)

Open to all. Free of charge for UI faculty, staff, and students. There is a $95 registration fee for outside visitors. View the preliminary schedule below.

Hosted by the Department of History and the Department of Classics, with support from the Obermann Center for Advanced Studies, the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences, the Digital Scholarship & Publishing Studio, and Coe College.

Individuals with disabilities are encouraged to attend all University of Iowa-sponsored events. If you are a person with a disability who requires a reasonable accommodation in order to participate in this program, please contact Erin Hackathorn in advance at or (319) 335-4034.


Thursday, April 23: Day One: Opening Night

5:30 pm: Registration & Packet Pick-up: Shambaugh Auditorium, Main Library
6:00 pm: Shambaugh Auditorium, Main Library, University of Iowa
Introduction: Rosemary Moore, Sarah Bond, and Serena Connelly (Rutgers University)
Introduction of Speaker: Adrienne Ho Rose (University  of Iowa)
Keynote #1: Jinyu Liu (DePauw University): Title TBA
7:30: UI Main Library and Gallery Space Cocktail Party

Friday, April 24: Day Two

Room: IMU Theater, Iowa Memorial Union, University of Iowa Campus, Iowa City, IA

8:30 –9:00 am: Continental Breakfast and Registration

9:00 am-10:30:  Panel #1: Ancient Food Panel: Jordan Rosenblum (University of Wisconsin-Madison)
(1) Zachary Herz (UC-Boulder), “Werewolves and Other Party Tricks in the Cena Trimalchionis”
(2) Nandini Pandey (UW-Madison), “Dining on Diversity: Culinary Cosmopolitanism among Roman Elites”
(3) Mary Jean McNamara (CUNY-Graduate Center), “Fowl Feasts: Class and Eating in Ancient Rome”

10:30-10:45: Break

10:45-12:00: Panel #2: New Documentation in Ancient History Panel: Georgia Tsouvala (Illinois State University)
(1) Edward Dandrow, (University of Central Florida), “Elagabalus as the Son of Caracalla and Plautilla? A New Genealogy on the Early Tetradrachms from Edessa in Osrhoene”
(2) Michael Ierardi (Bridgewater State University), “The Macedonian garrison on Acrocorinth: the view from a ‘Fetter of Greece’”
(3) Chingyuan Wu (Peking University),”Of Health or Savior? Emending the Herennia Hispana Inscription”

12:00-1:30: Lunch On Your Own 

1:30-3:00: Panel #3: Athenian Life and History Panel: Thomas Rose (Randolph-Macon College)
(1) Phil Venticinque (University of Chicago), “Ties that Bind: Curses and Commerce in Athens and the Ancient World” 
(2) James Sickinger (Florida State University), “The Kerameikos Ostraka: 50 Years Later”

(3) Kelcy Sagstetter (United States Naval Academy), “Politics and Triremes: Amphibious Warfare at Eurymedon”

3:00-3:15: Break

3:15-4:30: Panel #4: Alexander and his Generals on the Frontiers Panel: Rosemary Moore (University of Iowa)
(1) Jenna Rice (University of Missouri-Columbia), “Camels and Environmental Challenges in Alexander’s Campaigns: The Cases of Siwah and Nautaca”

(2) Daniel Beckman (Princeton University), “Frontiers of Royal Legitimacy Under Alexander and the Diadochoi”
(3) Andrea Gatzke (SUNY New Paltz), “Alexander and the Triumph of Dionysus”

4:30-4:45: Break

4:45-6:15: Presidential Panel: 4:45-6:15: A Global Antiquity: Angela Ziskowski (Coe College)
(1) Lee E. Patterson, (Eastern Illinois University), “The Role of the Nakharars of Armenia in Fourth-Century Roman-Sasanian Diplomacy”

(2) Stuart McCunn (Independent Scholar), “Prints of Persia: Great Walls and Sassanian Military Organization in Late Antiquity”
(3) Margherita Azzari, Carmelo Pappalardo, Anna Lena (Università degli Studi di Firenze), “Military roads, trade routes and pilgrimage trails: Cartographic, documentary and archeological sources for the reconstruction of the Syro-palestinian road network and landscape in the Late Antiquity”
(4) Q.Z. Lau (UC-SB) “Construction of Descent: Early Medieval Imagined Origins in Non-Imperial Peoples”

6:15: Procession to Open Bar and Appetizers (IMU, University of Iowa)

7:00: Conference Dinner at IMU: Keynote #2: Walter Scheidel (Stanford University), “The Ancient Historian on the Tightrope.”

Saturday, April 25: Day Three

Room: IMU Theater, Iowa Memorial Union

8:00–8:30 am: Continental Breakfast and Registration, Day 3

8:30-9:45: Panel #6: Digital Humanities Panel: Hannah Scates Kettler (Iowa State University)
(1) Rhyne King (University of Chicago), “Imperial Cooperation and Coercion: The View from Persian Mesopotamia”
(2) Werner Riess (University of Hamburg), “Moving Toward a Digital History of Ancient Violence: A New Information System on the Representation of Greek and Roman Violence”
(3) Vanessa Gorman (University of Nebraska-Lincoln), “Did Xenophon Write the Epilogue of the Cyropaedia? Using Stylometry to Determine Authorship”

9:45-10:00: Break

10:00-11:30: #7: Geographies of Conflict and Warfare Panel: Lee Brice (Western Illinois University)
(1) John Hyland (Christopher Newport University), “Darius I and the Spatial Dynamics of Achaemenid Royal Campaigns”
(2) Kurt A. Raaflaub (Brown University), “Justifying Genocide? Confronting the Dark Side of Caesar’s Gallic Wars”

(3) Jessica Tilley (Florida State University), “Victory over Things: Re-interpreting Mummius’s Display of Spoils in Greece” 

11:30-12:30: Lunch on your own

12:30-2:00 pm: AAH Business Meeting 

2:00-3:15 pm: #8: Pedagogy and Outreach Panel: Nandini Pandey (UW-Madison)
(1) Jeremy LaBuff (Northern Arizona University), “The Rewards and Challenges of a More Inclusive Instruction of Antiquity”
(2) Ryan Abrecht (University of San Diego), “Teaching Ancient History Through Historical Fiction” 
(3) Isabel Köster (UC-Boulder), “Teaching Gender and Ethnicity in the Roman World with Bernardine Evaristoâ’s The Emperor’s Babe”

3:15-3:30: Break

3:30-4:45: #9: Disease, Disaster, and Environmental Histories Panel: Brenda Longfellow (University of Iowa)
(1) Mark K. Gradoni (University of Maryland), “Plague and the End of Antiquity: A Reassessment” 

(2) Morgan King (College of St. Benedict / Saint John’s University), “They Feared Eternal Night”: Re-evaluating the Eruption of Etna in 44 BCE”
(3) Colin P. Elliott (Indiana University), “Climate Change and Coin Debasement in Roman Egypt”

4:45: Closing Remarks and Thanks (Moore and Bond)

5:00 pm: Exodus

FileDownload/print schedule