National Lecture Program

AIA Lecturer: Cynthia Shelmerdine

Affiliation: University of Texas at Austin

My fascination with the Greeks can be blamed largely on growing up in Cambridge, Massachusetts. The Shady Hill School built each year’s curriculum around a central subject: we were Greeks in the fourth grade, and that experience sparked a lifelong enthusiasm for this ancient culture. After study at Bryn Mawr and Cambridge University, I returned to the other Cambridge for a Ph.D. at Harvard University. My first job brought me to the Classics Department at the University of Texas at Austin. When I arrived I knew nothing about Texas except oil wells and the Alamo (I was Davy Crockett for Halloween when I was five), but I soon found out that Austin had a fine classics program, great restaurants, and Willie Nelson to boot. I teach everything from beginning ancient Greek to seminars on Mycenaean economy. I learned Mycenaean pottery at the site of Nichoria, and have continued to do ceramic study on the Pylos Regional Archaeological Project in the 1990s, and now on the Iklaina Archaeological Project.

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