Students wishing to pursue a PhD in Classics with a focus on Ancient History and/or the Archaeology of the Greek and Roman worlds may choose this track. These students earn no separate degree and fulfill many of the same basic requirements as those in other subfields of Classics. However, it gives them more flexibility to structure their program in consultation with their faculty advisors, for example, making use of opportunities outside of the Department of Classics for the study of Ancient History & Archaeology. This track is ideal for students with strong Greek and Latin who wish to prepare themselves for teaching careers that include Ancient History as well as the Archaeologies of the Mediterranean and larger Greek and Roman Worlds.
NYU has a large concentration of scholars in all areas of study of the Ancient World, including the Greco-Roman Mediterranean, the Ancient Near East and Central Asia, Northern Europe. Faculty in the Classics department include Joan Breton Connelly (Classical Archaeology), Barbara Kowalzig (Archaic and Classical Greece and the Mediterranean) Andrew Monson (Hellenistic world), Michael Peachin (Roman empire), and David Levene (Historiography) and Raffaella Cribiore (Late Antiquity). We cooperate closely with the Institute for the Study of the Ancient World, the Institute of Fine Arts, and the Department of History at NYU, and with some of the leading historians and archaeologists in their fields: Antonis Kotsonas (Mediterranean History and Archaeology), Clemente Marconi (Greek Archaeology), Katherine Welch (Roman Archaeology), John Hopkins (Greek and Roman Art), Roger Bagnall (Ancient History), Kostis Smyrlis (Byzantine History), Lorenzo D’Alfonso (Western Asian Archaeology and History), Beate Pongratz-Leisten and Daniel Potts (Ancient Near Eastern Archaeology and History), Sören Stark (Central Asian Art and Archaeology), Fiona Kidd (Hellenistic Central Asian Archaeology), and Sebastian Heath (Roman Archaeology, Digital Humanities) to name a few.
The Department of Classics has its own excavation and field school, directed by Joan Connelly on Yeronisos Island, Cyprus, where graduate students can gain first hand experience in Prehistoric, Hellenistic, and Byzantine Archaeology. We also place students on other excavations throughout the Mediterranean, Near East, and Egypt. Many of our students go on to spend a year in Greece as regular and associate members of the American School of Classical Studies at Athens. Internship opportunities are available at the Metropolitan Museum of Art and Brooklyn Museum, and we have regular exchanges with the nearby American Numismatic Society for the study of ancient coins. Graduate students have the opportunity to serve as teaching assistants in our undergraduate history and archaeology classes.
Courses: Students in the Ancient History & Archaeology track are required to take four seminars: 1) at least one Classical Archaeology seminar offered by Joan Connelly, such as Archaeologies of the Greek Landscape, Archaeologies of the Mediterranean Maritime World, Archaeologies of Greek Cult and Ritual; Cleopatra Between East and West: Archaeology of the Ptolemies; 2) at least one Ancient History seminar offered by Kowalzig, Monson, Peachin. Courses taught in recent years include such as Greek Religion in a Mediterranean Society, Polytheisms and Society in the Ancient World, Greek Drama in the Mediterranean and Black Sea, (Kowalzig); The Persian Empire; War, Diplomacy, and Finance, 323–30 BCE; Politics & Culture in Hellenistic Egypt (Monson); The Augustan Age in the Provinces; The Making and Functioning of Roman Law; Germanicus and the Crisis of the Incipient Empire (Peachin); 3) two seminars elsewhere within the university or the consortium based upon consultation with an Ancient History & Archaeology faculty advisor. The latter courses count toward fulfilling the general Classics Department requirement that doctoral students take at least two courses outside the Classics Department.
At least two of the four qualifying examinations will be in Ancient History or Archaeology. That means students have the option to take (1) Classical Archaeology and either Greek or Roman History or (2) Greek and Roman History along with two other exams of their choice. The Greek & Latin reading list will be adjusted to emphasize the study of Ancient History & Classical Archaeology for those students taking this track.
Students may join the track at any point up to the beginning of the thesis prospectus (normally in the fifth term). Students are advised to indicate their interest in the track upon application, but there are no reserved places, nor does a declaration of interest affect prospects of admission.