Black Sea Myths and Modern Europe

Friday, October 6, 2017  3:00pm The Heyman Center, Second Floor Common Room


Free and open to the public

No registration necessary

First come, first seated


Valentina Izmirlieva (Professor of Slavic Literature and PI of the Global Black Sea Networks Initiative)

The symposium addresses key ancient Black Sea myths that retain a stable presence in the Western cultural imagination—Prometheus, Medea and the Argonauts, Iphigenia, Odysseus—and aims to explore their life in the lands where these myths initially emerged. It targets especially the little-studied political mobilization of these myths in the construction of modern national, regional, and pan-European identities for various communities around the Black Sea. This symposium is the first public event of a long-term international research program, mobilizing an interdisciplinary team of scholars from the U.S., U.K., Greece, Bulgaria, and the Republic of Georgia under the umbrella of the global initiative “Black Sea Networks” (, housed by the Slavic Department of Columbia University.


  • Speaker

    Edith Hall

    Professor of Classics

    Kings College London

  • Speaker

    Cleo Protokhristova

    Professor of Comparative Literature

    Plovdiv University, Bulgaria

  • Speaker

    Tamta Khalvashi

    Assistant Professor of Anthropology

    Free University of Tbilisi

  • Discussant

    Helene Peet Foley

    Professor of Classics

    Barnard College


By Semester