Baylor Classics Department Presents Lecture on Epicureanism in Roman and Greek Culture

Nov. 19, 2014
Pamela GordonPamela Gordon courtesy photo.

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Media contact: Terry Goodrich, (254) 710-3321

WACO, Texas (Nov. 19, 2014) – Curious about Epicurus?

In an explanation of Epicureanism in Greek and Roman cultures, Pamela Gordon, Ph.D., University of Kansas professor of classics, will present her lecture “Code-switching for Epicurus: When are Greek and Roman Pleasure Not One?” from 3:30 - 4:30 p.m. Friday, Nov. 21, in Morrison Hall, Room 120.

Epicurus (341-270 B.C.) was a Greek philosopher who believed that good and evil in the universe were measured in pleasure and pain, pleasure being the greatest goal in life. Later, the Roman philosopher Lucretius (circa 99-55 B.C.) translated Epicurus’ Greek idea of pleasure into Roman terms. Gordon will elaborate on the cultural nuances surrounding the origin and adaptation of Epicureanism between the two classical societies.

“It’s a privilege to have a world expert on Epicureanism to come talk to us about Epicurus,” said Julia Hejduk, Ph.D., professor of classics in Baylor’s College of Arts & Sciences.

Students will not be the only ones to benefit from this lecture. Many professors in Baylor’s department of classics have studied Epicureanism in the Roman sense, Hejduk said. Jeffrey Fish, Ph.D., associate professor of classics, and Dan Hanchey, Ph.D., associate professor of classics, have researched Roman philosophers Philodemus and Cicero, respectively.

Gordon received her B.A. in Ancient Greek from Oberlin College and the M.A. and Ph.D. in Ancient Greek from Bryn Mawr College. At the University of Kansas, she teaches Greek and Latin at all levels, as well as courses on Greek and Roman literature in translation. Her scholarly interests include gender studies, the cultural history of Epicureanism and the Roman reception of Greek culture.

Morrison Hall is located at 1410 S. Fifth St. in Waco.

The free and public lecture is co-sponsored by Baylor’s departments of great texts and philosophy.

For more information, email

by Sarah Czerwinski, student newswriter, (254) 710-6805


Baylor University is a private Christian University and a nationally ranked research institution, characterized as having “high research activity” by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. The University provides a vibrant campus community for approximately 16,000 students by blending interdisciplinary research with an international reputation for educational excellence and a faculty commitment to teaching and scholarship. Chartered in 1845 by the Republic of Texas through the efforts of Baptist pioneers, Baylor is the oldest continually operating University in Texas. Located in Waco, Baylor welcomes students from all 50 states and more than 80 countries to study a broad range of degrees among its 12 nationally recognized academic divisions. Baylor sponsors 19 varsity athletic teams and is a founding member of the Big 12 Conference.


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