On Saturday 30th March, friends and supporters of the Classics in Communities project gathered at the Faculty of Classics in Oxford to celebrate the publication of Forward with Classics. The editors, Dr Arlene Holmes-Henderson, Steven Hunt and Dr Mai Musié were delighted that so many contributors to the book were able to join them for an afternoon of Classics and cake.
Dr Llewelyn Morgan (Brasenose College, University of Oxford) was the first keynote speaker. He welcomed everyone to the Faculty of Classics and provided some background to the project and its foundation within the Faculty of Classics in Oxford. Llewelyn highlighted the chapters by Emma Searle and Lorna Robinson which showcase two of the efforts being undertaken by the University of Oxford and its partners to widen access to the study of Classics in its local communities: the OXLAT scheme and the East Oxford Classics Centre. He also introduced the book's editors.
Arlene, Mai and Steve then provided a strategic overview of the achievements of the Classics in Communities project so far. Three contributors brought us up to date on developments since they wrote their chapters: John Bulwer (Euroclassica), Olivia Sanchez (St Paul’s Way Trust School) and Dr Aisha Khan-Evans (King’s College London).
The second keynote speaker (and contributor to the book) was Professor Edith Hall (King’s College London) who praised the editors for capturing innovative practice in Classics education around the globe, spanning the northern and southern hemispheres. Edith said that she was delighted to see chapters co-written by academics and teachers: an indication of the valuable lessons we can all learn when we discuss pedagogical approaches across traditional transitional phases.
Arlene outlined the next steps for the project and explained the need to secure additional funding to realise these ambitions.
The day ended with a drinks reception, cake cutting and book signing. Commissioning editor from Bloomsbury Academic Alice Wright was particularly delighted because every copy of the book was sold!
Particular thanks are due to Dr Audrey Cahill, Qasim Alli and Paul Sawyer in the Faculty of Classics at Oxford, without whom the event would not have been possible.