Now that I’ve finished my comprehensive exams, I can look forward to other matters I have on my plate this month. In addition to two book reviews I have to write for journals, I’m looking forward to finishing up work on a conference paper I present in a couple weeks at the annual CAMWS conference in Albuquerque, NM. My paper explores the depiction of Socrates as a slave of the gods in Plato’s Phaedo in light of recent research on freedpersons in Athens during the Classical period. I look forward to visiting New Mexico for the first time in ages and getting to catch up with some old friends.
I am also scheduled to interview Professor Victoria Pagán of the University of Florida for the CAMWS Oral History Project (CAMWSCorps), in which (under)graduate students interview veteran CAMWS members. The point of each interview is simply to let the interviewee reflect on his or her experiences with CAMWS, or more generally as a professional classicist, over the years. Professor Pagán’s research on conspiracy theory studies and their relevance for ancient Roman literature was influential for a paper I wrote a couple years ago on the application of conspiracy theory to the so-called “Gnostic Myth” of the wicked Demiurge and Archons.