Call for Papers:
New Approaches to Ancient Science

A Three-Year Colloquium of the American Philological Association

Organized by Philip Thibodeau, University of Georgia and Tiberiu Popa, University of Pittsburgh.

First Year: Life Sciences
134th Annual Meeting of the American Philological Association New Orleans, LA.
January 2003

This three-year colloquium has been designed with the aims of shedding new light on ancient science, enabling established and emerging scholars to share their views with one another, and giving this exciting branch of classics more prominence at the APA meetings. We hope to spur a large audience to a renewed appreciation of the power and sophistication, as well as the often telling limitations, of ancient scientific theories. The organizers invite researchers from a wide range of disciplines - classics, history, and philosophy of science, but also political and economic history, archaeology, psychology - to examine ancient science from their own varied perspectives.

In its first year the focus of the colloquium will be on the life sciences in antiquity, a domain that has long commanded the attention of leading scholars and has recently been the scene of intense and fascinating debates. Among the issues open for discussion are: methods of investigation within ancient zoology, botany, anatomy, physiology, and bio-chemistry; polemical discourse within these fields; biology as it was theorized vs. biology as it was practiced; social factors that caused the life sciences to change over time; reception in Islamic and Christian cultures; connections between human medicine and biology; connections between biology and fields such as physics and mechanics; the relationship between the inner structures of scientific explanation and the rhetoric of scientific discourse.

Abstracts of no more than 800 words should be sent by February 1, 2002 to Philip Thibodeau, Department of Classics, 221 Park Hall, University of Georgia, Athens GA 30602-6203. Email ( and hard-copy contributions are equally welcome. All abstracts will be judged anonymously by three referees; notifications of the colloquium's final decision will be sent out by March 25, 2002. Contributors must be members in good standing of the American Philological Association. For more information please visit our website at

(posted 8/23/01)

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