blog post

Women in Antiquity, virtually

**Updated March 30th**

Under the special restrictions put in place due to the coronavirus, we’ll be doing things a little differently when the semester resumes after Spring Break. While you will still be doing the readings according to the schedule, we will not be meeting in person during regularly scheduled class time. Instead, we’ll be going ahead in our exploration of women in antiquity with the following adjustments:

  • On Tuesdays and Thursdays I will upload a pre-recorded video lecture on the topic of the dayIn this video, I will discuss the passages which are posted on the blog post for each session. You can follow along on the blog — you will have the same access to the excerpts and images posted on the blog as you did before. The video lecture will be available on blackboard in the following place: Blackboard > Content. 

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  • If you are scheduled to do an in-class presentation, you will now be uploading your presentation materials to blackboard instead. Please email it to me and I will upload it to blackboard — it will be available in the same place as the video lectures. 
  • The presentation upload is due at our regular class time (Tues, Thurs 11am EST). Please upload both: 1) the slides of your presentation; 2) text or audio of your accompanying discussion. For 2), I leave it up to you whether you want to upload your discussion for myself and the other students to read (as a word or pdf file), or to listen to (as an audio file). You may upload your presentation as two separate files, i.e. 1) slides, 2) pdf. Or you may choose to do an audio voice-over of your presentation, i.e. upload one file which includes both slides and audio. Here is, for example, a video on “how to add your voice to your google slides.” If you have any questions or concerns about the technical side to this, please get in touch.
  • Ideally, you should send a **file** of your slides, so that I can upload that to blackboard. On google slides, you can save your presentation in a number of formats: go to File > Download. A pdf of the slides works!


  • Since we will not be together, and therefore not be able to have our usual vibrant discussion, we will have to find other ways to keep our strong community going. I have reconfigured the participation (20%) grade with that in mind. Here are some ways that you can “show up” for class:*
    • Discussion board. Use the discussion board in blackboard [Blackboard > Discussion board] to contribute ideas or ask questions about the readings and/or the lecture video. Interact with other students’ ideas, or post related content. I will take some time at the beginning of each video to address your questions and talk about your ideas from the previous session. Grade: Respond 1x per session (4%); 2 times per session (7%); 3 times per session (10%). 
    • Reflection piece. Produce a written reflection (150 words minimum) on the assigned readings, a text or object, or on a topic from the video lectures. Or, if you prefer not to write, make video clip or audio clip [3 mins minimum].  Email it to me and I will post it to blackboard. Grade: 3% per reflection piece.
    • Transcription. Transcribe the audio of the lecture videos into a written format. Grade: 5%. You may do this only once. Email me to choose a video.

*note: your participation grade maxes out at 20%. So if you do a lot on the discussion board (10%), and you do 4 reflection pieces (3% x 4 = 12%), your participation will be 20%, not 22%. However, there are still extra credit options available.

  • Update (Monday March 30th): You will no longer be doing a final exam for this class, but you will still be writing your second paper. Due Thursday April 30th.



  • “Office” hours. Traditional office hours are, of course, impossible right now. I am happy to answer questions by email, over chat, or over a video call. Write to me and we’ll arrange it.


blog post

Switching to remote teaching

[Email sent to class Wed 3/11/2020 12.30pm]

Dear students,

As, of course, you know, we are right now reckoning with the spread of the coronavirus, a very serious issue. Other universities have already taken the step to switch to digital teaching: Columbia, Princeton, Yale, Stanford; and in Boston itself, Amherst, MIT, and Harvard. This moment in history is one in which we must think of ourselves not as individuals, but as individuals within communities. There is a strong case to be made for implementing social distancing as the most effective method of containment right now. The many of us who are in good health must act in ways which protect the more vulnerable, the immunocompromised and the elderly.

With that in mind, I will be switching to teaching CL 206 Women in Antiquity in a digital format when the semester resumes after Spring Break. This means that **we will not meet in person** at our regularly scheduled time. The good news is that the resources for our class are already online on this course blog with additional readings accessible on blackboard. So, to some extent, we will be able to keep a sense of continuity. Over the next few days, I will reconfigure the class so that it is fully online. I will send another email by Sunday night (March 14th) to let you know how exactly we will be proceeding, and how you can participate in the class in a digital setting. I am approaching this course redesign with your interests in mind, and will do everything I can to make sure the educational experience a useful and stimulating one.

Please let me know if you have any questions or concerns going forward. I’m sure you will have many, and it is right that you should. I urge you to be in contact with me as much as possible going forward, and of course, with each other, so that we can maintain our strong sense of community.

One additional practical note. Under normal circumstances, I would return your midterms and papers graded in a timely fashion. I ask for your patience regarding the grading while I reconfigure this course into a digital format. I take seriously the fact that you want feedback on your work, and will do my best to get this to you when I can.

Stay safe out there, and be in touch.

Prof. Čulík-Baird