Speaker Bios


Dr. Eric Ashley Hairston is the Associate Dean for Academic Advising, Associate Professor of Interdisciplinary Humanities, and Interim Chair of the Classics Department at Wake Forest University. He received his B.A. in English and Politics from Wake Forest, his M.A. and Ph.D. in English Language and Literature from the University of Virginia, and his J.D. from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Law. His research areas include American Literature and Classical Literature, especially classical influences on African American and Southern writers, as well as the interdisciplinary study of law and humanities. His book, The Ebony Column: Classics, Civilization, and the African American Reclamation of the West (University of Tennessee Press, 2014), was a Choice Outstanding Academic Title and the inaugural book of the Press’s Classicism in American Culture Series.

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Dr. Allannah Karas is an Assistant Professor of Classics at the University of Miami in Florida. She received her Ph.D. in Classics from the City University of New York (CUNY). Before arriving at Miami, she taught and directed the Greek and Roman Studies program at Valparaiso University. With the support of an American Council for Learned Societies (ACLS) Fellowship, she spent the past academic year working at Columbia University on her book project, Persuasion without Argument: The Violent Goddess at the Roots of Rhetoric. In addition to writing about inducement (Greek peitho) in Greek drama and rhetoric, she also studies creative reconfigurations of Greco-Roman myth and figures done by Black American painters, sculptors, and ceramic artists.

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Angel Parham

Dr. Angel Adams Parham is an Associate Professor of Sociology and Senior Fellow at the Institute for Advanced Studies in Culture at the University of Virginia. She received her B.A. in sociology at Yale University and her M.S. and Ph.D. from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Her research and teaching in historical sociology are inspired by classical philosophies of living and learning that emphasize the pursuit of truth, goodness, and beauty. She shares this love of history and of classical learning through the Nyansa Classical Community, an educational non-profit focused on K-12 students, which seeks to cultivate knowledge and wisdom to transform a generation. She is the author of American Routes: Racial Palimpsests and the Transformation of Race (Oxford University Press, 2017) and, with Dr. Anika Prather, The Black Intellectual Tradition: Reading Freedom in Classical Literature (Classical Academic Press, 2022).

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Dr. Anika T. Prather is the Director for High Quality Curriculum and Instruction at the Institute for Education Policy at Johns Hopkins University. She has served in public and private schools for over 20 years. She is the founder of The Living Water School, a unique Christian school for independent learners, based on the educational philosophies of Classical Education and the Sudbury Model. She also teaches in the English department at Howard University, where her classes focus on the Black Classical Tradition. She has published two books about her journey to bring classical education to the Black community: Living in the Constellation of the Canon (self-published) and, with Dr. Angel Adams Parham, The Black Intellectual Tradition: Reading Freedom in Classical Literature (Classical Academic Press, 2022).

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Dr. Patrice Rankine is a Professor in Classics at the University of Chicago. He earned his B.A. in Ancient Greek magna cum laude from Brooklyn College, City University of New York City (CUNY), and his Ph.D. in classical languages and literatures from Yale University. He researches the Greco-Roman classics and their afterlife, particularly as they pertain to literature, theater, and the history and performance of race. He is the author of Choice Outstanding Academic Title Ulysses in Black: Ralph Ellison, Classicism, and African American Literature (University of Wisconsin Press, 2006) and Aristotle and Black Drama: A Theater of Civil Disobedience (Baylor University Press, 2013), as well as coauthor of The Oxford Handbook of Greek Drama in the Americas (Oxford University Press, 2015).

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Department of Classics

Morrison 333
One Bear Place #97352
Waco, TX 76798

(254) 710-1399