Princeton’s Leonard Barkan (RAAR’10) is the 2011 Jerome Lecturer

The Jerome Lectures are one of the premier international venues for presenting important work in Roman history and culture and its subsequent reception. In the course of five presentations from 9 through 16 March 2011, Leonard Barkan, the 40th speaker in the series, will explore connections in the Renaissance between what is called “high culture”—poems, paintings, musical composition—and the world of eating and drinking. Leonard Barkan (RAAR’10) is the Class of 1943 Professor of Comparative Literature at Princeton University and Director, Society of Fellows in the Liberal Arts.

Thomas Spencer Jerome (1864-1914) was a socially prominent American lawyer and afficionado of Roman history who lived on Capri from 1899 until his death. In his will he endowed a series of lectures to be jointly administered by the University of Michigan and the American Academy in Rome, and delivered at both institutions. First delivered in 1929/1930 and then not again not until 1947/1948, the Jerome Lectures then rapidly emerged as one of the most prestigious international venues for presenting important work in Roman history and culture, as well as on topics in historiography and the philosophy of history. The University of Michigan Press has long published the revised proceedings.

Looking back: Leonard Barkan at the Villa Aurelia as RAAR’10. Photo: Annie Schlechter

Barkan’s 2011 Jerome Lecture series is entitled “Unswept Floor: Food Culture and High Culture, Antiquity and Renaissance”, and will be presented in Rome in five installments:

Wednesday 9 March 2011 6 PM

I (Lecture): What Kind of a Subject is Food, Villa Aurelia of the American Academy in Rome

Friday 11 March 2011 6 PM

II (Lecture): Honest Pleasure, Villa Aurelia

Saturday 12 March 2011 11 AM

III (Seminar): Foraging in the Text, American Academy in Rome (Lecture Room)

Monday 14 March 2011 6 PM

IV (Lecture): Copia and Cornucopia, Villa Aurelia

Wednesday 16 March 2011 6 PM

V (Lecture): Metaphor and Embodiment, Villa Aurelia

In winter/spring 2009/2010, Leonard Barkan was an American Academy in Rome Scholar in Residence in History of Art. He is one of the most distinguished scholars in the field of comparative literature, and his numerous writings have earned wide praise for their lucid analysis of pressing issues in literature, art history, and the interstices of these two disciplines, especially for the Renaissance.

In addition to his position in the Department of Comparative Literature at Princeton University, Barkan holds membership also in Princeton’s English and Art and Archeology Departments; he previously taught at Yale, Northwestern and NYU. Leonard Barkan’s many prizes include election to membership in a number of learned societies, as well as a recent fellowship at the American Academy in Berlin.

Barkan is the author of more than a half-dozen books, including Satyr Square: A Year, a Life in Rome (Farrar, Strauss & Giroux, 2006), a memoir and meditation on his intellectual and personal relationship with Rome. In November 2010 Princeton University Press published Barkan’s latest work, Michelangelo: A Life on Paper. He will deliver his series of Jerome Lectures at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor later this spring (30-31 March, 2, 5-6 April).

Leonard Barkan reads to AAR Fellows from his Satyr Square (2006) in Rome’s Piazza dei Satiri, February 2010

PS: Scenes from the 2011 Jerome Lectures at the American Academy in Rome

The series ran  from March 9—16, with Leonard Barkan after his seminar on Saturday 12 March leading a large group (50+, comprising AAR Fellows, Affiliated Fellows, Residents, Visitors, and Friends of the Academy in Italy) on a site visit to the Villa Farnesina (with a special emphasis on Raphael’s Loggia of Cupid and Psyche), followed by the tomb of the baker Eurysaces at Porta Maggiore. Both sites had been discussed earlier in the day in Professor Barkan’s presentation. Photos below by AAR Mellon Professor Corey Brennan FAAR’88 unless otherwise noted.

I (Lecture), Wednesday 9 March 2011, “What Kind of a Subject is Food”

II (Lecture), “Honest Pleasure”, Friday 11 March 2011

III (Seminar), “Foraging in the Text”, Saturday 12 March 2011. In photo above, Elizabeth Minchilli (left), founder and Chair, Friends of the Academy in Italy; Christopher S. Celenza FAAR’94, Director, AAR

Saturday 12 March 2011: visit with Fellows and Friends to Villa Farnesina

Saturday 12 March 2011: visit to Villa Farnesina. Photo credit: Nick Barberio

Visit to the tomb of the baker Eurysaces at Porta Maggiore. Photo credit: Nick Barberio

V (Lecture), “Metaphor and Embodiment”, Wednesday 16 March 2011. Below, Leonard Barkan with Anna Celenza and (at right) AAR President Adele Chatfield-Taylor FAAR’84.

Below is a list of the 15 most recent installments in the Thomas Spencer Jerome Lectures series. Almost all of these have appeared or are appearing in published form with University of Michigan Press.

2010 Q. Sulpicius Maximus, Poet, Eleven Years Old —Kathleen Coleman

2009 Roman Imperialism and the Power of the Media—Henner von Hesberg

2008 Transformation: Fears and Fantasies in the Roman Empire—Maud Gleason

2006/7 Images and Translations: Greek, Etruscan, and Beyond—Larissa Bonfante

2004 Architects and Antiquity in 18th Century Rome—John A. Pinto

2002/3 Copies Without Models: Hellenization and Augustan Poetry—Alessandro Barchiesi

2001/2 Public Monuments in Ancient Greece and Rome—Tonio Hölscher

2000/1 The Discovery of the Greek Countryside at Metaponto—Joseph C. Carter

1998 The Capitoline Ideology—Nicholas Purcell

1996 What has Athens to do with Jerusalem? The Counterpoint between Timaeus and Genesis from Classical Rome to Catholic Rome—Jaroslav Pelikan

1993/4 The Crowd in Rome in the Late Republic—Fergus G. B. Millar

1992 How the Humanists Read the Classics: Studies in the Arts of Interpretation—Anthony Grafton

1991 Before Demaratus—David Ridgway

1990 Mountain and Plain from the Lycian Coast to the Phrygian Plateau, in the Late Roman and Early Byzantine Period—R. Martin Harrison

1989 Hellenism in Late Antiquity—Glen Warren Bowersock

Two views of 2011 Jerome Lecturer Leonard Barkan in Rome: with AAR Fellows on the roof terrace of S. Giovanni Battista dei Fiorentini; at the Villa Aurelia


One Response to “Princeton’s Leonard Barkan (RAAR’10) is the 2011 Jerome Lecturer”

  1. Food made of pressed curds Says:

    […] I sipped from the well of erudition. Professor Leonard Barkan, of Princeton University, gave the 2011 Jerome Lectures at the American Academy in Rome, and his topic was Unswept floor: food culture and high culture, antiquity and […]

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