Joseph Day retired from regular teaching at Wabash in 2011; he is now pursuing his research interests full time, though he anticipates occasional returns to the Wabash classroom. He normally lives in Crawfordsville and works on campus, but for the 2011-12 academic year, he is Elizabeth Whitehead Visiting Professor at the American School of Classical Studies at Athens, where he has regularly been a Senior Member since 1974 and serves on the Managing Committee.
Day first came to Wabash in 1983, after earning his B.A. in Classics (summa cum laude) from Gonzaga University and his M.A. and Ph.D. from Stanford University. His wider interests include Greek and Latin language and literature, ancient history, Greek religion, and Greek athletics. In May 2011, he led his Greek athletics seminar to Greece for a 10-day trip around major sites and museums at Athens, Delphi, Olympia, Nemea, and Isthmia.
Joseph Day’s research has long focused on Greek epigram, that is, inscriptions in poetic meter, especially from the Archaic and early Classical periods. He has worked on public epigrams and private epitaphs and dedications (gifts to gods deposited in sanctuaries). Day has developed a thesis that reading epigrams while viewing the inscribed object (often a statue) constituted a kind of reperformance. Encounters with grave markers repeated key effects of the funeral, and those with dedications constituted a reperformance of the rite of dedicating. The project’s culmination, a book entitled Archaic Greek Epigram and Dedication: Representation and Reperformance, was published by Cambridge University Press in 2010. In 2011-12, he is starting new projects related to Greek epigram and teaching a graduate seminar at the American School on inscribed epigram.
B.A. 1970, Gonzaga University
M.A. 1974, Ph.D. 1978, Stanford University
Classics 105 - History 211: Ancient Greece
Classics 106 - History 212: Ancient Rome
Classics 213- History 310: Ancient War
Greek 101-102: Elementary Ancient Greek
Greek 301: Herodotus and Thucydides
Greek 301: Drama and Religious Poetry
Latin 387: Latin Sources for Roman History
Archaic Greek Epigram and Dedication: Representation and Reperformance (Cambridge University Press, 2010).
“Servants of the Goddess: Female Religious Functionaries in Archaic and Fifth-century Greek Epigram and Dedication,” in When the Epigram ‘Gets in a State’: Its Presence and Function in Epigraphy, Literature, and History. Publication in progress with ENS-Lyon.
“Epigraphic Literacy in Fifth-Century Epinician and its Audiences,” in Inscriptions and their Uses in Ancient Literature. Publication in progress with Oxford University Press.
”Poems on Stone: The Inscribed Antecedents of Hellenistic Epigram,” in P. Bing and J. S. Bruss, editors, Brill's Companion to Hellenistic Epigram: Down to Philip. Leiden: Brill, 2007. Pages 29-47.
“Epigram and Reader: Generic Force as Reactivation of Ritual,” in M. Depew and D. Obbink, editors, Matrices of Genre: Authors, Canons, and Society. Cambridge, Mass: Harvard University Press, 2000. Pages 37-57, 248-254.
“Interactive Offerings: Early Greek Dedicatory Epigrams and Ritual,” Harvard Studies in Classical Philology 96 (1994) 37-74.
“The Poet’s Elpis and the Opening of Isthmian 8,” Transactions of the American Philological Association 121 (1991) 47-61.
“Rituals in Stone: Early Greek Grave Epigrams and Monuments,” Journal of Hellenic Studies 109 (1989) 16-28.
“Epigrams and History: The Athenian Tyrannicides, A Case in Point,” in The Greek Historians (Stanford 1985) 25-46.
In 2010, Prof. Day was awarded Wabash’s McClain-McTurnan-Arnold Award for Excellence in Teaching.
In 2009, he was awarded the Indiana Classical Conference’s “College Teacher of the Year” award.
In 1994, he held (jointly with Prof. Leslie Preston Day) Wabash’s McClain-McTurnan-Arnold Research Fellowship.
In 1984-85 and again in 2000-01, he held research fellowships from the National Endowment for the Humanities, and in 1980 he participated in an NEH seminar on Byzantine Greece, all three at the American School in Athens.
In 1970, he was awarded a Woodrow Wilson Fellowship.
American School of Classical Studies at Athens:
Immersion trip with Greek athletics seminar (May 2011):