Zoë Kontes is an Old World archaeologist who has excavated in Sicily, Greece and Cyprus. Kontes was awarded a Teaching Fellowship from the Whiting Foundation in 2009, and the Kenyon College Trustee Teaching Excellence Award in 2013. Her courses include surveys of both Greek and Roman art and archaeology, as well as seminars on Sicilian archaeology, Athenian topography and the illegal antiquities trade. These courses are closely tied to her research interests, including issues of cultural property; in 2015 she wrote an op-ed on the repatriation of antiquities for the New York Times. She produces a podcast series on the illicit trade in classical antiquities, supported by a Whiting Foundation Public Engagement Fellowship. Kontes is also a Consulting Scholar at the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology, and a DJ at WKCO 91.9 FM.

Areas of Expertise

Greek and Roman archaeology, illicit antiquities

Education

— Doctor of Philosophy from Brown University

— Bachelor of Arts from Bowdoin College

Courses Recently Taught

We will explore the ancient Greek world through its material remains -- art, architecture and commonplace objects -- from the early cultures of the Bronze Age to the dominance of Athens in the Classical period, and the great Hellenistic cities that followed. Houses, sanctuaries, civic buildings and tombs will all reveal aspects of Greek society, from the everyday to the extraordinary. We will discuss how archaeologists study this material, and some of the current debates regarding the preservation and presentation of Greek antiquities and archaeological sites. The course will include PowerPoint lectures and discussion, reading from both textbooks and scholarly articles and an optional trip to the Cleveland Museum of Art. No prerequisite. Generally offered every other year.

This course introduces the artistic, architectural and archaeological remains of ancient Italy and the Roman Empire from c. 900 BCE to 330 CE. We will study Roman material culture from its early beginnings under Etruscan influence through the era of the Roman republic, the imperial period, the rise of Christianity and the dissolution of the empire. We will examine architecture, sculpture, pottery and coins in their social and political contexts, with the goal of understanding all aspects of Roman society and those under Roman rule. The course will be based on slide lectures with assigned readings to supplement the images seen and discussed in class. No prerequisite. Offered every other year.

Who owns the Classical past? In this seminar we will discuss a broad range of ethical dilemmas presented by the practice of archaeology in the 21st century. We will focus on issues concerning the looting of ancient sites; ethical, political, and legal aspects of the international trade in art objects and antiquities; authenticity and forgery of ancient art and the scientific technologies applied in the analysis of ancient objects; the management of museums and repatriation of cultural property; conservation and preservation of cultural heritage; and the protection of cultural property in armed conflict. No prerequisite.

This course offers independent study for senior candidates for honors. Permission of instructor and department chair required.

This course offers independent study in Greek for senior candidates for honors. Permission of instructor and department chair required.

Knowledge of Latin opens the door to direct engagement with some of the greatest and most influential writings in Western culture without the obscuring filter of translation. The study of Latin also enhances students' ability to think analytically and to use the English language with greater understanding and sophistication. The benefit of these skills extends far beyond the study of Latin to all areas of life that demand critical thinking or effective oral and written communication. The aim of this yearlong course is twofold: (1) to give students a thorough knowledge of the grammar and vocabulary employed by Roman writers of the second century BCE through the second century CE, and (2) to have students read increasingly unadapted passages from those writers. After completing this course, students will be prepared to read with good comprehension the works of great Roman writers such as Cicero and Vergil. Faithful attendance and timely completion of all work are essential to success in this course. There will be daily assignments to prepare and frequent written homework, including translations from English to Latin. Classroom work will focus on understanding and practicing grammar and on reading Latin. Students also will be introduced to the literary and cultural context of the readings. Progress will be assessed by regular tests and frequent quizzes. There also will be a three-hour final examination in May. This course presumes no prior study of Latin. Students enrolled in this course will be automatically added to LATN 102Y for the spring semester. No prerequisite. Offered every year.

Knowledge of Latin opens the door to direct engagement with some of the greatest and most influential writings in Western culture without the obscuring filter of translation. The study of Latin also enhances students' ability to think analytically and to use the English language with greater understanding and sophistication. The benefit of these skills extends far beyond the study of Latin to all areas of life that demand critical thinking or effective oral and written communication. The aim of this yearlong course is twofold: (1) to give students a thorough knowledge of the grammar and vocabulary employed by Roman writers of the second century BCE through the second century CE, and (2) to have students read increasingly unadapted passages from those writers. After completing this course, students will be prepared to read with good comprehension the works of great Roman writers such as Cicero and Vergil. Faithful attendance and timely completion of all work are essential to success in this course. There will be daily assignments to prepare and frequent written homework, including translations from English to Latin. Classroom work will focus on understanding and practicing grammar and on reading Latin. Students also will be introduced to the literary and cultural context of the readings. Progress will be assessed by regular tests and frequent quizzes. There also will be a three-hour final examination in May. This course presumes no prior study of Latin. No prerequisite. Offered every year.

The goal of this course is to cultivate students' skills as readers of continuous Latin prose. To this end, students will expand their vocabulary as well as review and refine their understanding of the morphology and syntax of classical Latin. Upon completing this course, students will read Latin prose with greater precision, nuance and speed. Authors read with some regularity in this course include Caesar, Cicero and Sallust; however, the particular text or texts will vary from year to year and may be complemented with a selection of poems, for example those of Catullus. Offered every fall.

This course offers independent study in Latin for senior candidates for honors. Permission of instructor and department chair required.