I am currently working on two major, productive research strands: (1) ‘Allusions to Antiquity: New Zealand and WW1’; and (2) ‘The night in Antiquity’.
The first examines the relationships between WW1, New Zealand, and antiquity; relationships most obviously symbolized by NZ landing troops at Gallipoli a region rich in Classical tradition with its proximity to Troy. The geography and history are important backdrops to many accounts of the campaign, although it is little studied from a New Zealand perspective. My interests are the allusions to antiquity in soldier’s accounts, how heroic imagery is enhanced by classical references and how such imagery helped develop the Anzac legend, as well as instances where antipodean war participants collected artefacts from the ancient world.
The second ‘strand’ introduces relatively uncharted terrain, drawing on extant source material to understand the literary, cultural, and political significance of the ‘night’ in antiquity. Surprisingly little work has been done on the way people’s in the ancient world dealt with the subject of the ‘night’, yet light and dark, day and night are topics that feature strongly in classical representations, but a clear and detailed understanding of the impact of this universal division of the day is little studied. My interests range from the literary imagery of night and darkness to the reality, the activities undertaken in households, in urban areas, or military decision making and strategy.