What is SASA?
OUR MISSION: TO SAVE ANCIENT STUDIES IN AMERICA
Ancient Studies are diminishing in institutions of higher education in America. Although the Humanities in general are on the decline in American colleges and universities, Ancient Studies are at the forefront of this downward trend.
Universities are cutting the courses they offer, shrinking departments and reducing support for research, instead offering the bare minimum of generalised introductory courses.
The value of college education in America is changing. The concept of the Liberal Arts education as one which is fundamental to building democratic, worldly American citizens has greatly diminished. In its place has risen a careerist attitude, among both the student body and their parents. The process of engaging with the fundamental texts and ideas of the modern enterprise is losing its appeal, while the science, technology, and industrial sectors flourish.
To many, learning about Ancient peoples, cultures, and history seems irrelevant today.
What´s more, colleges and universities have re-oriented themselves along capitalist lines. As businesses that provide services to consumers, they tailor their offerings to students' and parents' desires.
In truth, so many Americans ARE interested in the Ancient World! A huge range of media and entertainment explores the Ancient. People love watching re-enactments of ancient battles on the History Channel. The hugely popular TV series Game of Thrones draws on Ancient lore and portrays a world of reimagined Ancient landscapes. Major blockbuster movies watched by millions entice and delight by visualizing Ancient cultures - these include The Mummy, Indiana Jones and Troy, to name but a few. Bestselling novels enrapture us with Ancient religion and magic, such as Dan Brown's The Da Vinci Code.
What seems to have been lost from this fascination with the Ancient World is that the way we KNOW about the Ancient World is through Ancient Studies!
We, who love Ancient Studies, know its value, but how can we spread this recognition?
SASA aims to combat this problem by uniting graduate students, early career academics and anyone with a passion for Ancient studies to help create a groundswell of interest in Ancient Studies.
As we realize that institutional bodies in America now align their priorities with their constituents, SASA aims not to confront and lobby these institutions, but rather to generate interest in Ancient Studies so that these institutions will adjust their focus accordingly.
To accomplish this SASA will:
Inspire a passion for Ancient Studies among high school, undergraduate, and graduate students
Provide content, tools, and instructions online to make the study of the Ancient World more accessible
Recruit a community of Ancient Studies students, professionals & enthusiasts to further the cause
Develop, advocate, and support scholarly life for graduates of subjects related to Ancient Studies who work in non-academic fields.
Through these efforts, SASA aims to drive an explosion of the informal and formal learning of Ancient Studies.
This will lead to institutional investment in Ancient Studies, and as a result:
Together we will Save Ancient Studies in America!
TO THE ANCIENTS
to Ancient Studies
Uniting Our Passion
for Ancient Studies
in the Ancient World