Alumni News (2019-20)
Eric Adler, Ph.D., Classical Studies (2005)
"My third book, *The Battle of the Classics: How a Nineteenth-Century Debate Can Save the Humanities Today* is due out from Oxford University Press in September. Other recent articles have appeared or are forthcoming in *Acta Classica*, *TAPA*, *Humanitas*, and the *Classical Journal Forum*. I hope all my fellow Duke classics folks are doing well!"
Carl Ginsberg, A.B., Classical Civilizations (1992)
"I am still in Dallas, but no longer a full time Iudex. After 12 years on the bench, I now serve as a mediator and arbitrator, occasionally serving as a visiting Judge (which is like substitute teaching). Since I only judge people professionally, and not in my spare time, when I have leisure time, I travel as often as possible. My last trip to Italy included Sicily, a real treasure trove for viewing antiquities. Sometimes, I get up to NYC and have lunch with fellow Duke '92 grad Prof. Joel Allen, where we reminisce about Duke and quiz each other how life might have turned out had he gone to law school and had I pursued a PhD in Classics. When feeling philosophical (and a tad cynical), I am still always asking, "cui bono," and "quo warranto.""
Will Nifong, A.B., Classics (1989)
Will Nifong just finished his tenth year as Latin teacher at Chicago Public Schools' Northside College Preparatory High School (NCP), where he has served as World Languages Department Chair for the past five years as well. He joyfully reports that the Latin program continues to thrive, with a number of students recently attending the virtual 2020 National Junior Classical League convention on behalf of Illinois. Most notably, the Illinois Novice and Intermediate certamen teams, comprising only NCP students, placed 2nd and 6th, respectively, out of all states participating in the competition! Will also notes that his first pupil to study at the Intercollegiate Center for Classical Studies in Rome, 2020 Yale graduate Lina Kapp, who also spent a season excavating at Gabii, is preparing to apply for Classics graduate school programs in the coming year. If that were not proof of Will's commitment to the health of the discipline, he also was supposed to officiate at the wedding this July of another former high school student, David Jaffe, now a Latin teacher in Massachusetts who is marrying a fellow Latin teacher. The happy nuptials have been postponed until July of 2021. PROGREDIAMUR!
Benjamin Torbert, A.B., Classical Studies (1998)
"I become Associate Chair of the English Department at the University of Missouri-Saint Louis in AY 2020-21, and continue for a seventh year as Director of Graduate Studies. In 2020, I was invited for the first time to speak about Opera, my most enduring interest. Opera Theatre Saint Louis asked me to give a mini-course on Carlisle Floyd's Susannah (1955), a surprisingly feminist text of the Cold War era, of increasing relevance at present. In addition to the English Language courses, my seminars on The Wire, Opera literature, and Flannery O'Connor remain in rotation. I also delivered a eulogy for my father In June, on Zoom, as we convened his memorial service postponed from March. And speaking of Sons and Fathers, last August I traveled to the funeral mass of Father Owen Lee, Classicist and Opera commentator of much renown, at St Michael's College in Toronto. Festina lente."
Mark Torlone, A.B., Classical Studies (1985)
"Though the pandemic persists, this past year has been thankfully fruitful for the Torlone family here in Cincinnati.
"Our oldest daughter, Christina, will be entering her senior year of high school, completing college applications, and praying for a graduation ceremony that is not online. This past semester I myself was busy during the quarantine home schooling our youngest daughter, Francesca. Here’s a picture of the two of us in our home office classroom celebrating her successful completion of the third grade, despite having pater as magister!
"My wife, Dr. Zara Torlone, Classics professor at Miami University, recently published A Handbook to Classical Reception in Eastern and Central Europe. Currently Zara is working with Oxford University Press to prepare a collected volume for its Classical Presences series on mythological tragedy as an ideological tool in Russia and the Eastern Bloc. She will also edit with Susanna Braund a special issue of Classical Receptions Journal dedicated to failed translations of Vergil. This past summer she participated remotely in the online Symposium Cumanum which was devoted to issues of Vergil and genre. In 2021 Zara will be hopefully returning to the Villa Vergiliana as a speaker at the non-virtual version of the Symposium Cumanum.
"The Torlones wish everyone in the Duke Classics family abundant health and happiness this coming year!"
Mack Zalin, Ph.D., Classical Studies (2016)
"I became Librarian for Modern Languages and Literatures & Comparative Thought and Literature at Johns Hopkins University this past January. Though COVID has posed major challenges to getting settled, I'm still loving my new position, which has allowed me to work across the humanities. I've even had the opportunity to teach Latin for Reading Knowledge to Hopkins grads and faculty this summer through the Charles Singleton Center for the Study of Premodern Europe.
"Once the pandemic has subsided, Jess and I would love to receive visitors at our new place in Baltimore. Until then, stay safe and be well."