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Karen ní Mheallaigh


Current position: Professor, Department. of Classics, John Hopkins University, USA.

During her AIAS-COFUND Junior Fellowship, Associate Professor Karen ní Mheallaigh worked on the project "Discovering the ancient scientific imagination".

Project at AIAS

The project will explore the dynamic interplay between scientific and imaginative thought in ancient Greek and Roman culture, where the categories of ‘scientific’ and ‘imaginative’ thought were less polarized than they tend to be now. Specific areas for analysis include: the interplay between ancient astronomy and ancient literature; the role of mechanical automation and architecture in generating and enhancing sensory and imaginative experience; overlaps between ‘natural history’ and fiction. It is hoped that this study of the organic intertwining of scientific and imaginative thought will not only provide a new, deeper understanding of post-Classical culture in the ancient world, but also a provocative model for thinking about our modern context, especially in light of the increasing emphasis on the value of academic interdisciplinarity.

Project title:

Discovering the ancient scientific imagination

Area of research:

Philology, Litterature, Art and Ancient Sciences

Fellowship period:

1 Oct 2014 – 30 Sep 2016 

Fellowship type:

AIAS-COFUND Marie Skłodowska-Curie fellow

This fellowship has received funding from the European Union’s Seventh Framework Programme for research, technological development and demonstration under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie grant agreement No 609033 and The Aarhus University Research Foundation.