Christopher Witmore will present at the Seminar in Cultural History on Tuesday, April 24, at 6 pm. His talk is entitled “From Corinth to Keep, or Three Travelers, Two Journeys, One Castle: A Chorography of Greece in the Late Seventeenth Century.”

Following in the footsteps of three travelers who visited Acrocorinth in the late seventeenth century—Evliya Çelebi (1668), and George Wheler and Jacob Spon (1676)—this talk offers a chorographical narrative of their engagements with the castle. Shifting back and forth between the recorded descriptions of the well-connected Ottoman traveler and the two Northern Europeans, a Protestant with a love of botany and an antiquary, Witmore works through questions of experience, articulation, and purpose. What attracted these highbrow wanderers to these wondrous heights? What did they seek among wayward stones? Rather than undertake an overt comparison of Eastern and Western perspectives, this talk advances through simple chorographical juxtaposition, drawing out connections and differences one, perhaps, would not have encountered otherwise. Finally, by situating this endeavor within the context of a larger chorography of the Eastern Peloponnesus, Witmore closes by offering some reflections on the reconstitution of the ancient and antiquarian genre for scholars today.

Christopher Witmore is Associate Professor of Archaeology and Classics in the Department of Classics & Modern Languages & Literatures at Texas Tech University. Holding a PhD from Stanford University (2005) and an MA from the University of Sheffield (1998), he is fascinated by the character and scope of archaeology. For over a decade he has explored fundamental questions concerning the discipline’s objects, practices, and rapports with what has become of the past. He is co-author of Archaeology: The Discipline of Things (2012, with B. Olsen, M. Shanks, and T. Webmoor), co-editor of Archaeology in the Making (2013, with W. Rathje and M. Shanks), and co-editor of the Routledge Archaeological Orientations series (with G. Lucas). His current projects include Old Lands. A Chorography of the Eastern Morea, Greece and Teillager 6, Sværholt: The Archaeology of a POW camp in Finnmark, Arctic Norway (with B. Olsen and Þ. Pétursdóttir).

This event will be livestreamed. Please check back the day of the event for a link to the video. To watch videos of past events please visit our YouTube page.