Classics and Ancient History seminar: Optimates and Ideology: A Review
Katherine Welch | Sydney
Optimates and Ideology: A Review
After 30 years as a member of staff, Kathryn Welch will retire from the Department of Classics and Ancient History at the University of Sydney on 15 March 2021. She will not be slowing down her research and writing in retirement but hopes that she will not only write lots but also have time for music, gardening, and talking to future generations of students who share her passion for Roman History and the City of Rome. We ask you all to join us on Thursday March 11 to hear Kathryn deliver her final seminar paper as a member of staff but by no means her last word on res
Roman historians are habituated to equating “the Optimates” with conservative self-interest. To be fair, there is certainly an overlap between those who called themselves “the Best Men” and the self-serving villains of the drama that is “the Fall of the Roman Republic”. This paper will review some recent scholarship on optimates and then will attempt to identify a consistent and powerful ideology that lay at the heart of Roman Republican political culture. In the end, when one conflates optimates with senators and (worse) nobiles one risks misunderstanding pretty much everything about Roman political culture.
We welcome you to join us for a gathering at the Rose Hotel following the presentation to toast Kathryn and celebrate her extraordinary contribution to the University of Sydney and the Department of Classics and Ancient History. There is a small charge for food and a starter bar tab. It would be greatly appreciated if you could book by Tuesday March 2nd but later bookings are possible if space remains.
The Department of Classics and Ancient History hosts a lively departmental research seminar series. Everyone is welcome to attend.
On Zoom (followed by drinks and dinner at the Rose HOtelfor those who register)
If you haven’t already registered to receive the Zoom meeting details for our events, please click here to register your interest in the seminar.
Seminar Series convenors:
Louise Pryke and Emma Barlow
Click here to email
The Department of Classics and Ancient History is part of the School of Philosophical and Historical Inquiry (SOPHI).