Eleftheria Manta was born in Thessaloniki, Greece. She is Associate Professor of Modern Greek History at the School of History and Archaeology. She studied History at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki where she received her Master degree after conducting a 1-year research program in Rome with a scholarship of the Rotary Club of Thessaloniki. She received her Ph.D. (2005) on Modern and Contemporary History while she was working as Research Associate of the Institute for Balkan Studies, in Thessaloniki. In 2008, she was elected Director of that same Institute. She joined the School of History and Archaeology of the Aristotle University in 2011, initially as Lecturer. Her academic and research interests include Modern Greek history (from 17th c.), Albanian and Balkan history, Greek-Albanian relations etc. She speaks English, French, Italian, and Albanian. Her main publications are: Poverty and Charity in Thessaloniki (1930-1935), Thessaloniki 2016 (in cooperation with D. Kontogeorgis and Ch. Mandatzis); The Educational System for the Greek Minority in Albania during the Interwar Period, Thessaloniki 2010); Muslim Albanians in Greece. The Chams of Epirus (1923-2000), Thessaloniki 2000 (originally in Greek, translated in English, 2008, and in Albanian, 2015);
Kosovo and the Albanian Populations in the Balkans, Thessaloniki 2000 (collective work); The Greek Minority in Albania. A Documentary Record (1921-1993), Thessaloniki 1994 (in cooperation with B. Kondis).
Florence Fabricant’s work has opened many doors, enabling her to experience the history, culture and traditions of many countries. Greece has been high on the list since she was a teenager. With a BA from Smith College (’58) and an MA from New York University, Ms. Fabricant has studied Greek culture and visited Greece several times. She has read most of the classics in translation and also, as an art major in college, studied the great works – architecture, sculpture, painting (pottery) – of ancient Greece. With her husband, an archaeology buff who is a member of the Archaeological Institute of America, she first visited Greece in 1964, a three-week trip when a tourist could wander freely around the Acropolis and nothing was roped off. She has been back to Greece three times since then, most recently two years ago. She has worked with Greek chefs, and participated in extensive tastings of Greek wines. For food and wine, she will bring a substantial breadth of knowledge, experience and taste to the table. As she proudly stated, “Greece is also in my kitchen repertoire: I have made my own phyllo!”
Geoffrey S. Sumi is professor of classics at Mount Holyoke College (South Hadley, MA). He
teaches ancient Greek and Latin languages at all levels as well as courses in the history,
literature, and culture of the ancient Mediterranean world, including “War and Imperialism in the
Ancient World,” “Sport and Spectacle in the Ancient World,” and “Bad Roman Emperors.” He
is the author of Ceremony and Power: Performing Politics in Rome between Republic and
Empire (Ann Arbor 2005) as well as articles on Greek and Roman history.
As the Mary and Michael Jaharis Curator for Byzantine Art at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Dr. Helen C. Evans has spent extensive time in Constantinople, Thessaloniki and Ravenna – major cities of the Byzantine Empire at differing times over its long history. At The Met, she has curated the award winning exhibitions The Glory of Byzantium (843-1261)in 1997, Byzantium: Faith and Power (1261-1557) in 2004, Byzantium and Islam: Age of Transition in 2012, and most recently Armenia! in 2018. The New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, the Washington Post, Apollo Magazine and others have praised the exhibitions as among the most important cultural events of their years. The catalogue of her exhibition Byzantium: Faith and Power (1261-1557) won the award for the best book on Byzantine art of its year. Byzantium and Islam: Age of Transition won the World Book Award for the best new book in Islamic Studies from The Ministry of Culture and Religious Guidance, Tehran, The Islamic Republic of Iran. Dr. Evans has taught courses on Byzantine and Armenian art at New York University and Columbia University and has lectured widely in Europe and America. She received her B.A. with Honors from Newcomb College of Tulane University and her M.A. and Ph.D. from The Institute of Fine Arts, New York University. She is president of The International Center for Medieval Art (ICMA) and immediate past-president of the Association of Art Museum Curators (AAMC) and AAMC Foundation.
Jared Diamond is a Pulitzer-prize-winning author of five best-selling books, translated into 38 languages, about human societies and human evolution: Guns, Germs, and Steel, Collapse, Why Is Sex Fun?, The Third Chimpanzee, and The World until Yesterday. As a professor of geography at UCLA (University of California at Los Angeles), he is known for his breadth of interests, which involves conducting research and teaching in three other fields: the biology of New Guinea birds, digestive physiology, and conservation biology. His prizes and honors include the U.S. National Medal of Science, the Pulitzer Prize for Non-fiction, the Tyler Prize for Environmental Science, and election to the U.S. National Academy of Sciences. He is a director of World Wildlife Fund/U.S. As a biological explorer, his most widely publicized finding was his rediscovery, at the top of New Guinea’s remote Foja Mountains, of the long-lost Golden-fronted Bowerbird, previously known only from four specimens found in a Paris feather shop in 1895.
Jeremy McInerney is Professor of Classical Studies at the University of Pennsylvania, and chair of the Graduate Group in Ancient History. He completed his PhD in 1992 at the University of California, Berkeley. He is the author of The Folds of Parnassos, a book on state formation in Archaic Greece and The Cattle of the Sun, a book dealing with the importance of cattle-raising, meat and sacrifice in the culture of Ancient Greece. He is editor of Blackwell’s Companion to Ethnicity in the Ancient Mediterranean and co-editor of Landscapes of Value: Natural Environment and Cultural Imagination in Classical Antiquity, published in 2016. In January 2018, Thames and Hudson published his new volume, Ancient Greece: A New History. He has published more than thirty articles on topics ranging from gender to epigraphy. Currently he is working on the function of hybridity in Greek culture, and is also completing a study of Athenians relations with the island of Lemnos as part of which he reexamines the temple of Hephaistos at Athens. He serves on the Managing Committee of the American School of Classical Studies at Athens, where he was Whitehead Professor in 2013-14. At the University of Pennsylvania he has won the Ira Abrams teaching award from the School of Arts and Sciences and the Lindback award from the University.