Call for Papers: Roman Military Studies Panel

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Call for Papers: Roman Military Studies Panel at the 10th Celtic Conference in Classics, Montreal (Canada), 19-22 July 2017

A Thousand Years of War: New directions in Roman military studies, c. 500BCE-500CE.

Organizers: Michael Fronda and Jeremy Armstrong

Contact: michael.fronda@mcgill.ca and js.armstrong@auckland.ac.nz (for queries only; abstracts must be sent to the panel email address, below)

Deadline for contributions: November 13, 2016

Several important developments over the last forty years have transformed the field of Roman military history. On the one hand, the dynamics of ancient warfare itself have been explored in far greater detail. Most notably, the application of Keegan’s Faces of Battle approach has opened up the soldier’s perspective of the battlefield. An ever-increasingly archaeological record has offered entirely new dialogues and avenues of inquiry. Practical and experimental studies have also done much to elucidate how ancient military praxis actually worked, in some cases confirming, in other cases challenging, the literary evidence. Logistical analyses, often drawing heavily on comparative evidence, have disclosed the constraints within which ancient armies operated.  Our understanding of the practicalities of Roman warfare has therefore grown by leaps and bounds. On the other hand, the rise of the “new military history” has pushed the study of Roman warfare beyond its traditional focus on battles, equipment, tactics, and strategies, emphasizing instead the fundamental interrelation of war and a wide range of ancient social, political, economic, religious, and cultural structures. Indeed, the bibliography of scholarship on “war and society in the ancient world” appears to be expanding exponentially. Roman warfare is no longer seen as an isolated phenomenon which occurred on the fringes of empire, but as a valuable lens for understanding the basic nature of Roman society. But where is the field going? This panel aims to consider the direction of the field of Roman military studies in the next generation.

We invite papers on Roman warfare and the Roman army, broadly conceptualized with in the wider ancient Mediterranean context from c. 500 BCE to 500CE, that draw on new approaches, methodologies, and questions. This can include not only explorations of the nature of the Roman army and Roman warfare in antiquity, but also submissions which test methodological or disciplinary boundaries – for example employing psychoanalysis, neurobiology, cognitive theory, game theory, video games, or computer simulations, from the perspective of history, art history, literature, reception, memory studies, mass media studies, medicine, technology.

Abstracts (one page, 300-350 words) should be submitted to 2017CCCRomanmilitarystudies@gmail.com by November 13, 2016.  Abstracts must be submitted to this address. For other queries, contact the organizers directly at the addresses provided above. Contributors will have 30 minutes to present their papers; each paper will be followed by a brief discussion.  The languages of the Celtic Conference in Classics  are English and French.

Please note the the Celtic Conference in Classics is self-funding and all speakers must arrange and bear their own travel and accommodation expenses.

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