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Collis Lecture highlights discussion on Roman and Greek perceptions of Jewish society

Transylvania University Collis Lecture
Transylvania University Collis Lecture

University of California Berkeley professor emeritus to speak at Transylvania

On Wednesday, Sept. 26, the Collis Lecture welcomes Erich Gruen, professor emeritus at the University of California, Berkeley for a discussion on perceptions of Jewish society from the perspective of Roman and Greek societies. 

In its second year, the Collis Lecture is one of several endowed speaker series hosted by Transylvania University. This series was graciously endowed by Dr. William J. Collis and his wife, Constance.

Gruen is the Gladys Rehard Wood Professor of History and Classics, Emeritus at the University of California, Berkeley, where he taught for more than 40 years. He has also served as a visiting professor at Princeton, Cornell, Stanford, Oberlin, Cincinnati, Minnesota, Oxford and in Jerusalem.

At Transylvania, Gruen will speak on the topic “Did Greek and Roman Writers Take the Jews Seriously?” It’s an area in which he has written extensively as the author of 16 books. His titles include: The Last Generation of the Roman Republic, The Hellenistic World and the Coming of Rome, Heritage and Hellenism: The Reinvention of Jewish TraditionDiaspora: Jews amidst Greeks and RomansRethinking the Other in Antiquity, and Constructs of Identity in Hellenistic Judaism.  

In addition, Gruen is a former president of the Society of Classical Studies, a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, a fellow of the American Philosophical Society, an honorary fellow of Merton College, Oxford, and a winner of the Berkeley Citation for distinguished achievement, as well as the Austrian Cross of Honor for Arts and Letters.

Attend in person: Wednesday, Sept. 26 / 7:30 p.m. / Carrick Theater

The 2018 Collis Lecture will be held on Wednesday, Sept. 26 at 7:30 p.m. in the Carrick Theater on Transylvania University’s campus. Admission to the lecture is free and open to the community.

The lecture is part of part of Transylvania’s New Frontiers season, which asks audiences to go beyond the familiar and explore ideas, art and music. The 2018-19 season focuses on Transylvania’s year-long campus theme—civility—and the debate over its role in shaping citizens and communities.