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Political culture, religion and identities

from the Hellenistic period to Late Antiquity

This research group collects an active and wide ranging group of researchers, with a wide international network. The emphasis of this research group has been on interdisciplinary research, with special focus on the intersections of ancient history with political history, classical archaeology, classical literature and religious studies. All projects share an interest in political culture, and religious and cultural changes in the ancient world between the Hellenistic period and the Later Roman Empire. The group meets on a regular basis to discuss theoretical and methodologicaladvances, as well as members’ research projects.

Members of this group take part in CRASIS , and the Kossmann Institute of the University of Groningen (RUG) and the research group Impact of Empire of the National Research School OIKOS.

Permanent members of staff: (for more detail see the individual web pages).

Prof. Dr.Onno M. van Nijf


  • The Greek city after the Classical Age (directed with Prof. R. Alston, Royal Holloway, University of London)
  • The imperial Greek city: local politics in a global empire
  • Greek athletics and festivals in the Greek world under Rome
  • Connected Contests. Festival networks in the Ancient World (with Dr Christina G. Williamson).

Dr. Jan Willem Drijvers


  • The Emperor in the Late Roman World: Culture of Leadership
  • Historical fiction
  • Philological and Historical Commentaries on Ammianus Marcellinus (with Profs J. den Boeft, D. den Hengst and H.C. Teitler)
  • Panegyrici Latini (with Dr Roger Rees, St Andrews)

Dr. Christina G. Williamson


  • Commanding Views. Monumental landscapes and the territorial formation of Pergamon, 3rd to 2nd centuries BC
  • Civic Rituals and Sacred Landscapes. Outlying Sanctuaries as Urban Transformers in Hellenistic Asia Minor
  • Connected Contests. Festival networks in the Ancient World (with Prof. Dr. Onno M. van Nijf)

Dr. Inger Kuin


  • After the Crisis: Re-anchoring and Innovation in Post-War Societies (with Prof. Dr. Onno M. van Nijf)

Current PhD students:

  • R.G.L. Praet: Finding the Present in the Distant Past. Antiquarianism in Late Antiquity (in collaboraion with Prof. P. van Nuffelen, University of Ghent)
  • L. Focanti: Antiquarianism in Late Antiquity (in collaboraion with Prof. P. van Nuffelen, University of Ghent)
  • S. Speksnijder: Greeting and eating: patronage and social hierarchies in Roman society 80 B.C.–180 A.D. co-supervisor Prof. Dr. R.R. Nauta, RUG Latin)
  • T. Blokzijl: Keizers en Decurionen. De verspreiding en acceptatie van keizerlijke macht, ideologie, cultuur en mentaliteit in Romeins Italië  (27 v.Chr.- 68 n.Chr.)
  • N. Bos: The Antikythera Mechanism ( co-supervisor Prof. Dr. R. van de Weijgaert. RUG, Kapteijn Institute Department of Astronomy)

Associated PhD students:

  • Ms. B.E.A. van der Lans  'Defining Jewishness and Christian Identity in Claudian-Neronian Rome: Impact of State Intervention' (main supervisor Prof. dr. G.H. van Kooten, RUG, New Testament).

Former (associated) PhD students:

  • dr A.B. Overbeek Realistische Geschiedschrijving: Theodor Mommsens’s Römische Geschichte
  • dr A.J. Zuiderhoek Citizens, elites and benefactors: the politics of public generosity in Roman Asia Minor
  • C.P. Dickenson: Social Change reflected in material remains: an investigation of the changing use of agoras in Greece in the Hellenistic and Roman periods (co-supervised by Prof. K. Buraselis, Athens, and Dr. L. C. Nevett, U. Michigan)
  • Ms. C.G. Williamson: City and sanctuary in Hellenistic Asia Minor (co-supervised by Dr. F. Pirsson, DAI and Prof P. A. Attema, RUG, Classical Archaeology)
  • Ms. M.K. Termeer: Cultural identities in the Latin colonies of Central Italy (4th-3rd cent. BC) co-supervisor Prof. Dr. P. Attema, RUG, Classical Archaeology)
  • Ms. M. P. Schipperheijn Religion and royalty. The religious representation of king Antiochos I of Commagene (main supervisor Prof. Dr. J.N. Bremmer, RUG, Sciences of religion).
  • Ms. K.B. Neutel  'One in Christ': Context and Consequences of Paul's idea of the Unity of Believers ( main supervisorProf. Dr. G.H. van Kooten, RUG, New Testament)
  • Ms. E. Ilyuschechkina, Die Periegese des Dionysios von Alexandria und ihre Verbindungen mit der hellenistischen Tradition Main supervisor Prof. dr. M.A. Harder, RUG Greek
  • G. de Breucker Berossos van Babylon (with Prof. Dr. W.J. van Bekkum, RUG)

Associated senior members:

Prof. dr. M.A. Harder (RUG, Greek)

Prof. dr. R.R. Nauta (RUG, Latin)

Dr. M. Popovic (RUG, Faculty of Theology and sciences of religion Qumran Institute)

Prof. dr. G.H. van Kooten (RUG, Faculty of Theology, New Testament)

Laatst gewijzigd:25 juli 2018 15:55