New Center at Yale To Support Study of Greek Heritage and Culture

The Stavros Niarchos Foundation has endowed a new center to promote the study of Greek language, heritage and culture at Yale University.

The Stavros Niarchos Foundation Center for Hellenic Studies at Yale will be the major source of funding for the Hellenic Studies Program at the Whitney and Betty MacMillan Center for International and Area Studies at Yale University. The Program was launched in 2001 with funding from the Stavros Niarchos Foundation, alumni gifts, and University resources.

The Hellenic Studies Program encourages and coordinates the study of post-antiquity Hellenic culture and civilization at Yale. It offers a comprehensive curriculum in modern Greek and cooperates closely with the Yale Center for Language Study in the development of technology-based teaching aids for modern Greek. As part of its mission to put the study of post-classical Greece in a broad geographical, historical and comparative context, the Program has affiliations with faculty members teaching courses in disciplines across the curriculum — including history, history of art, Near Eastern languages & civilizations, political science and religious studies among others.

The Program is co-directed by Stathis Kalyvas, the Arnold Wolfers Professor of Political Science, and John Geanakoplos, the James Tobin Professor of Economics. The Program’s current faculty consists of George Syrimis, Associate Program Chair and Lecturer in Comparative Literature, Maria Kaliambou, Lector in Modern Greek, and Giorgos Antoniou, Visiting Lecturer in History.

In the last six years, the Hellenic Studies Program has organized more than 100 events, including conferences on topics ranging from Greek monuments to Cyprus’ European accession, the Olympics and public health, among others. In 2004, the program inaugurated the annual Stavros Niarchos Lecture. It has also sponsored film screenings and a concert program that featured some of Greek music’s most renowned artists. In fall 2007, the Program hosted the 20th biannual symposium of the Modern Greek Studies Association. The Program has awarded more than 50 language and research grants to Yale students and has hosted a series of visiting scholars. It has also initiated a number of online projects for modern Greek language acquisition, an online tour of several Greek Byzantine churches and a project to digitize over 7,000 images of Byzantine art. A full list of the Program’s activities can be found at its website: http://www.yale.edu/macmillan/hsp.

The Stavros Niarchos Foundation Center for Hellenic Studies at Yale is the latest in a series of Yale initiatives funded by the Stavros Niarchos Foundation, an international philanthropic organization that supports charitable activities in four primary areas: arts and culture, education, health and medicine, and social welfare. Selectively, the Foundation also seeks to support programs within and outside Greece that promote, maintain and preserve Greek heritage and culture. Previously, the Foundation also funded a collaboration between the Yale Peabody Museum and the Natural History Museum of Crete, the publication of the YaleGlobal online magazine at the Yale Center for the Study of Globalization, and a scholarship in Yale College.



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Media Contact

Dorie Baker: dorie.baker@yale.edu, 203-432-1345