Many thanks for a warm reception and much good conversation at the Classical Association annual conference at Durham University. My lecture was a general report on the debates over my work.
The Sociedade Brasileira de Estudos Classicos has invited me to lecture at their national congress in Rio de Janeiro, 17-21 October 2011. The Society’s website is here.
Professor Gabriele Cornelli, the new head of the International Plato Society, has invited me to lecture at the University of Brasilia in mid-October 2011.
There will be a panel discussion and lectures on Plato, symbols, and music at a conference of the Society for Ancient Greek Philosophy at the Lincoln Center campus of Fordham University on October 21-23, 2011. My lecture will claim that Plato’s symbolic structures settle some long-standing disputes in Plato studies. The panel will be chaired by J.J. Mulhern, University of Pennsylvania, and include Debra Nails, Michigan State University, and Terry Echterling, Michigan State University. Thanks to all the organizers.
See the Society’s website here.
Gerald A. Press, Debra Nails, and Harold Tarrant, the editors of The Continuum Companion to Plato (forthcoming, 2012), were kind enough to include an article on the musical structure of Plato’s dialogues. After some brief background in Greek music theory, I summarised the evidence for musical symbolism in Plato’s Symposium in a way that would enable its readers to verify the presence of the embedded scales themselves.
Like many universities today, the University of Manchester encourages its faculty to popularise their research in the mainstream media. The director of the Centre for the History of Science, Technology, and Medicine, Mick Worboys, suggested that a press release be issued about the symbols found in Plato’s dialogues. The University’s Media Relations Department presented this work in simple and even semi-sensationalised language, but even so the response around the world was surprising. There was a debate here in Britain last Autumn about a government plan to push all academics to publicise their work, and there was some interest in my case. The Times Higher Educational Supplement recently published a first-person account of my experiences, and a pdf version may be found here. (Please note: not my choice of title!)
I would like to thank the Institute for Classical Studies at University College London and the classics departments at Leeds University and the University of Manchester for inviting me to speak and for their warm hospitality.
I would also like to thank the organisers of the Manchester Science Festival for assembling such a large and enthusiastic audience for my lecture there.