Graduate Student Summer Update with PhD Student Katerina Apokatanidis

August 31, 2023 by Department of Classics

Fifth year PhD student Katerina Apokatanidis had a busy summer.

In April, she was interviewed on Peopling the Past, a digital humanities initiative dedicated to the production and presentation of open-access multimedia resources for teaching and learning about real people in the ancient world and the real people who study them, launched in September 2020. The project is produced by Carolyn M. Lafèrriere, Assistant Curator of Ancient Mediterranean Art at the Princeton University Art Museum, and Chelsea A.M. Garden, Associate Professor of Ancient History at Acadia University.

In the interview, Katerina discusses her study of mortuary contexts associated with the Orphic Gold Tablets titled “Death as Continuum.” Her research integrates recent advances in the field of mortuary archaeology with a theoretical toolkit known as “lived religion” to better understand the social contexts and experiences of ancient practitioners.

Katerina then spent May and June as a Teacher Assistant in the Anglophone group of the Canadian Institute in Greece’s Summer School Program. She summarized her travels with students through southern Greece, around Attica, the Peloponnese, and the island of Aigina on the CIG’s blog. Highlights of the trip include a hike up Mount Lykabettos, perennial favourites the Acropolis and Parthenon, the Temple of Aphaia, the Stadion of Olympia, the Lion Gate of Mycenae, and the Palace of Nestor in Pylos.

In September, Katerina returns to work with Professor Sarah Murray on the archaeology of Greek ritual and religion in the late Archaic to early Classical period. Her current research, of which her study of Orphic gold tablets is a part, provides a new angle of examination of the relationship between mortals and gods in ancient Greek thought and aims to add to our interpretation of the Orphic Gold Tablets by examining them as objects of a cult practice and funerary culture which unified people from different social, political, and temporal contexts.