Thursday, August 11, 2022

SASA Virtual Conference: “Opening the Ancient World,” on Sunday-Monday, August 14-15, 2022

Save Ancient Studies Alliance is hosting our second annual free, public academic virtual conference, “Opening the Ancient World,” on Sunday-Monday, August 14-15, 2022.


THIS YEAR’S THEME: Who Has the Power? Leaders and Leadership in the Ancient World




The conference will be livestreamed in the following places. Questions can be posed to presenters through the chat in any of these.

SASA Conference web page:

SASA YouTube:

SASA Facebook:

Digital Hammurabi YouTube:

World History Encyclopedia YouTube:

World History Encyclopedia Facebook:

Per-Hay Studios YouTube:

World of Antiquity YouTube:

Voices of Ancient Egypt YouTube:

By Jove Theatre Facebook:

Thanks to our partners for helping bring academic Ancient Studies scholarship to a broader audience.


Save Ancient Studies Alliance presents our second annual conference, a new type of online conference for ALL Ancient Studies scholars & anyone interested in the Ancient World. Our goals are (1) to present and support excellent scholarship by scholars around the world, who work at the at the fringes of the academic community and researchers who have not followed the traditional tenure-track career path, (2) to foster discussion and action regarding public outreach and scholarly inclusiveness, (3) to hold a conference freely available to the public and (4) to continue building a joint community of scholars including both scholars working in academia and scholars who work in other professions. We bring together scholars who do not normally have the opportunity to present and engage with scholarship, including:

- those who completed a PhD and are now professionals in other fields,

- those who left PhD programs, or have had to take time out of their studies,

- contingent faculty,

- teachers, professors, and staff from K-12 schools and community colleges

- public humanities institutions,

- cultural resource management professionals, and

- other independent scholars.


In recent years, leadership and leaders has become a hot issue. Notable leaders around the world continue to gather attention for various reasons. For example, ex-president Trump’s role in the storming of the capital on Jan 6, 2021, is still debated, Indian prime minister Narenda Modi’s policies put the country into an uproar, Xi Jinping is driving national and international infrastructure projects, and Vladimir Putin encroaches on others’ territories. In a global context, leaders of every country continue to make decisions on how their communities should act in the light of the global pandemic, yet often let political concerns dictate their choices.

Problems surrounding leadership today have parallels to similar situations in the past. Leadership has been a point of emphasis for scholarship on the Ancient World, particularly as many records and monuments directly relate to leaders. On the other hand, just like today, ancient leaders had to work to maintain their legitimacy and authority, struggle with dissenters, and face internal and external crises.

This conference addresses leaders and leadership throughout the Ancient World, across the globe and in pre-modern times.

Three keynote addresses will be given by:

Dr. Kara Cooney - Egyptologist, archaeologist, Associate Professor of Egyptian Art and Architecture at UCLA and chair of the Department of Near Eastern Language and Cultures at UCLA

Dr. Amanda Podany - Professor of History at California State Polytechnic University, Pomona. She specializes in the study of Syria and Mesopotamia in the Middle and Late Bronze Age

Dr. Sarah Allan - Chair for the Society for the Study of Early China. Her work includes reconstructing the basic concepts of the mythology of China's Shang dynasty.

In this inclusive context, beyond the scholarly presentations, we will also host special sessions in which we aim to discuss a range of issues pertaining to the precarious situation of Ancient Studies. These discussions will broach the issues of how to develop outreach by Ancient Studies scholars, further inclusiveness, and reimagine scholarship as a lifelong pursuit within a diverse yet inclusive scholarly community.


DAY 1, AUGUST 14, 2022

10:00am - 10:15am EDT 

- Introductions - Dr. David Danzig and Dr. Anh Nguyen 

10:15am - 11:45am EDT 

Session 1 - Community Leadership: 

- Dr. Georgina Longley | The People and the Politeia: Good Government and a Willing Populace in ancient Greek political theory 

- Bárbara Alexandre Aniceto | Did Greek women have a leading voice? A gender discussion on female roles in Classical Athens 

- Ronald Clark | Power in Leading Flocks, Faith, and Family in the Early Christian Community 

11:45am - 12:30pm EDT 

- Keynote 1 - Dr. Amanda Podany | Looking for Leaders: The People Missing from Mesopotamian Royal Inscriptions 2500-1500 BCE 

12:30pm - 12:45pm EDT 

- SASA Access Team Presentation - Dr. John Haberstroh 

12:45pm - 2:15pm EDT 

Session 2 - Paths to Leadership: 

- Pratishtha Mukherjee | Administrative and Military Achievements of Chandragupta Maurya 

- Nicholas Mataya | Holy Leadership in a Power Vacuum: Severinus of Noricum in Post-Roman Noricum 

- Babette Margolies | Leadership in the Multicultural World of the Achaemenid Empire 

2:15pm - 2:30pm EDT 

- SASA Archaeogaming Streaming Team Presentation - Kate Minniti and Alex Vandewalle 

2:30pm - 4:00pm EDT

 - Special Session 1 - Roundtable on Independent Scholar Community Building and Integration 

4:00pm - 4:45pm EDT 

- Keynote 2 - Dr. Sarah Allan | When Sky/Heaven was not moved: Redefining kingship in Warring States period (475-222 BCE) China 

4:45pm - 6:15pm EDT 

- Special Session 2 - Storytelling by Inspirational Independent Scholars 

DAY 2, AUGUST 15, 2022 

11:00am - 11:30pm EDT

SASA Live Events Team Presentation - Lauren Kubosch

SASA Research Team Presentation - Dr. Valeria Zubieta

11:30am - 12:00pm EDT 

Session 3 - Displays of Power:

- Catherine Nuckols-Wilde | The Spoils of War and the Privileges of Rulers: Maya Full-Figure Glyphs as Signs of Privilege and Dominion 

12:00pm - 1:00pm EDT 

Session 4- Resistance Against Leaders:

- Dr. Aaron Higashi | Everyday Resistance in Ezra 10 

- Jackson Reinhardt | “That ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.” Divine Viceregency and the Armor of God in Ephesians 

1:00pm - 2:15pm EDT 

- Special Session 3 - Workshop on Publishing Forums

2:15pm - 2:30pm EDT 

- SASA Ambassador Interview 

2:30pm - 3:15pm EDT 

- Keynote 4 - Dr. Kara Cooney | The Good Kings: Absolute Power in Ancient Egypt & the Modern World

3:15pm - 5:15pm EDT 

Session 5- Reinterpretations of Leadership:

- Massimo De Sanctis Mangelli | Finding Refuge with the Enemy: Implications of the “Giving King” in Herodotus 

- Bryan Kinzbrunner | Are they Divine or are they Human? Reading the Biblical characters through the eyes of the Talmudic Rabbis 

- Dr. Priscila Scoville | How connected was the Ancient Near East during the Amarna Age? 

- Jase Short | The Open Maw of the God-King: the Tragedy of Kronos and its Status as Political Critique in Antiquity 

5:15 - 6:15pm EDT 

- Social hour 

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