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Amsterdam has a new focal point for research and teaching on Classics and Ancient Civilisations, Classical Languages and Archaeology with the newly established Amsterdam Centre for Ancient Studies and Archaeology (ACASA).

This centre sees the VU University Amsterdam (VU) and University of Amsterdam (UvA) join forces in order to build on their strong, internationally-recognised position in these fields of study. The creation of the ACASA will be celebrated on Monday, 1 October 2012, with, among other things, a lecture by Ian Morris, who enjoys worldwide fame as an archaeologist and cultural historian.

More knowledge about Archaeology and Antiquity

ACASA wants to develop into a leading centre of expertise in the field of Archaeology and Antiquity. On 1 September, a first official step was made with the introduction of the joint Master’s programmes in:

  • Classical Languages

  • Classics and Ancient Civilisations

  • Archaeology

In concrete terms, this new centre of expertise will result in a larger teaching staff, as well as a greater variety of courses, disciplines and areas of specialisation. This offers opportunities for both the deepening and expansion of knowledge in these fields, and for establishing connections between disciplines. It will also lead to a research and teaching profile that is attractive both nationally and internationally.

ACASA wants its areas of focus to be as broad as possible, from Assyria to Amsterdam and Sparta to Spitsbergen. It wants to engage with society by both gathering and sharing knowledge, for example through exhibitions, courses and lectures for secondary school students and teachers or other interested parties. In this way, the ACASA will meet the increasing interest in ancient civilisations, and help to secure a place for the past in the modern world.

Opening Lecture

Ian Morris’ lecture, entitled ‘From Ancient Greece to the Euro Crisis: The Rise – and Fall? – of the West ', is an example of a new approach to Classics and Ancient Civilisations, in which he explains how the past shapes the present and the future. Morris is professor of Classics, History and Archeology at Stanford University (USA). His most recent book, Why the West Rules-For Now, in which he compares the history of the West and China over the past 15,000 years, is an international bestseller.