We’ve got another Corinth conference in the works at the University of Texas. In late September, the Departments of Religious Studies and Classics, and the Institute for the Study of Antiquity and Christian Origins will be hosting a conference on the theme of “Corinth in Contrast: Studies in Inequality. As the conference website states:
“This conference explores the stratified nature of social, political, economic, and religious spheres at Corinth, and how the resulting inequalities are reflected in literary texts and material remains. The analysis focuses on a specific population center (the Corinthia) over a given period of time (Hellenistic to Late Antique).”
The 12 presentations include topics covering the city and territory from the 3rd century BC to 7th century AD, and include discussions on individuals like Phoebe of Kenchreai, Junia Theodora, Herodes Atticus, and the Emperor Justinian. Judging from the titles, St. Paul should make an appearance in at least a few papers. Thematically, the papers include such topics as agricultural systems, magic and ritual, dining, slavery, and mixed marriages in 1 Corinthians, and elite expenditure and expression.
This is the third conference held at the University of Texas dedicated to interdisciplinary discussion of the themes of religion and society in the Hellenistic and Roman periods. The last two were published as Urban Religion in Roman Corinth: Interdisciplinary Appraoches (2004) and Corinth in Context: Comparative Studies on Religion and Society (2010). And the conference organizers, Steve Friesen and Sarah James, have plans to publish this third conference quickly.
Over the next few weeks, I will be blogging about the conference presentations including my own paper on the diolkos and the commercial facility of Corinth. I expect that my colleague Bill Caraher of the University of North Dakota will be as well. He has already give us some preliminary thoughts about late antique prosperity and monumental architecture in the 5th and 6th century Corinthia.