Garrett Fagan, associate professor of classics and ancient Mediterranean studies and history at the Penn State University, will present "Roman Arena and Crowd Dynamics" at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 11, at the Miami University Art Museum.
His talk is part of the Oxford Society of the Archaeological Institute of America (AIA) lecture series.
Fagan, an ancient historian, conducts research on Roman leisure culture, in the form of public bathing culture and the Roman games. His current book project, The Lure of the Arena: Social Psychology, Spectatorship and the Roman Games, explores the psychological processes at work among the arena crowd to offer a new perspective on the infamous Roman games. He is also author of Bathing in Public in the Roman World. He has served as an expert consultant for media projects including NOVA, the History Channel and NPR.
His lecture will examine the social psychological components of the Roman arena's popularity, and how the physical disposition of the spectators at Roman arenas facilitated the processes of the crowd and lent the events a heightened excitement and emotional pitch.
The lecture, free and open to the public, is sponsored by the Oxford Society of the Archaeological Institute of America, the Miami University Art Museum and the departments of classics and comparative religion.