Plebeian: Journal of the Classics Students’ Union is an annual publication. The papers published in each volume have been presented at Undergraduate Conferences here at the University of Toronto.

Click here for videos of past talks.

Why Plebeian?

Undergraduate students are often seen as an anonymous crowd, a mass of bodies, numbers on an administrator’s computer screen, and are thus frequently overlooked when it comes to original ideas and research. Like the plebs of Ancient Rome and hoi polloi of Greece, we are many; nevertheless, we remain a vibrant community of explorers, thinkers, pioneers. This journal is so named in an attempt to reclaim this word of disdain for our own. Here, we proudly display our undergraduate research to those who might otherwise let it pass by, unnoticed.

Past Volumes (PDF):

Plebeian Volume I (MMXV)

Plebeian Volume II (MMXVI)

Plebeian Volume III (MMXVII)

Plebeian Volume IV (MMXVIII)

Plebeian Volume V (MMXIX)

Plebeian Volume VI (MMXX)

Plebeian Volume IX (MMXXIII)

Plebeian Volume X (MMXXIV)

Submit a Paper!

Submissions for Plebeian are closed for the 2024 edition.

Apply to be the Editor-in-Chief (EIC)

Applications for the EIC position are closed.

Apply to be Deputy Editor-in-Chief or Head Associate Editor

Applications for the Deputy EIC and Head Associate are closed.

Apply to be an Associate or Copy Editor
Applications for the Plebeian Volume X Editorial Board are closed.

Board Structure 2023-24:
Editor-in-Chief: Piper Hays
Deputy Editor-in-Chief: Emily Hart
Head Associate Editor: Tallulah Valliere-Paul
Associate Editors: Anoushka Banerjie, Julien Levit, Kate Levey, Madeleine Schmuckler, Maya Smart, Micah Heinricks, Zoe Peddle-Stevenson
Copy Editors: Elisa Penha, Marco Costantino

The roles and responsibilities of each position are outlined in the Plebeian Organizational Charter.

Paper Selection Procedure: Papers are only accepted from current University of Toronto undergraduates. Plebeian is committed to transparency and operates with a blind selection process as detailed here.

Submitted papers are anonymized (all author names, course codes, and dates removed) by the Editor-In-Chief to ensure fairness and to allow editors to submit their own papers for consideration. The Editor-in-Chief, knowing the authors’ identities, does not vote except in the case of a tie. Papers are sorted into categories based on themes as decided by the Editor-in-Chief, and ranked from 1-5 by associate and copy editors, the Head Associate Editor, and the Deputy Editor-in-Chief, whose selections are all weighted the same. None of the selection team knows an author’s identity other than their own.

Authors who are also editors must abstain when it comes to their own work(s) — we have implemented this in order to prevent bias in the selection process. The Abstain vote does not represent ‘0’ or remotely drag a paper’s rank down — the average is calculated from all other scores.

These weighted values will then be averaged to determine the top 1 or top 2 papers in each category.
More than one paper by the same author will not be selected: if the top 2 in a crowded category both belong to the same author, the third will be chosen.

Any further questions should be directed to the Editor-in-Chief.

Past Conferences:
Click here to watch past conference presentations!

For last year’s conference schedule and topics, please see below.

2024: The Assembly of the Plebs X, 22 March 2024, 10:00am-3:00pm, WW 126.

10:00–Room opens
10:20–Opening remarks
10:30–Kate Levey, Powerless Protagonists: The Servus Callidus in Roman Comedy
11:00–Elisa Penha, A Mascot For What You’ve Become: Antinous and the Iconography of Queer Grief
11:30–Anoushka Banerjie, Taking the Piss: The Coinage of Pisistratus
1:00–Kamyar Jumabhoy, Reevaluating the Impact of the Antonine Plague on Army Mortality in the Roman Empire
1:30–Piper Hays, Hot Gates and Iron Curtains: Nationalism and the Reception of Thermopylae in American Film
2:00–Tallulah Valliere-Paul, Part of the Community: Homosociality in Thesmophoriazusae and Metamorphoses 12
2:30–John Weachter, Great and Essential: An Analysis of the Intention Behind Emperor Claudius’ Monumental Drainage of the Fucine Lake
3:00–Closing Remarks

Past Editors-in-Chief 

2024 (X): Piper Hays
2023 (IX): Piper Hays
2022 (VIII): John Liao
2021 (VII): Leah Schweitzer Gukathasan
2020 (VI): Erica Venturo 
2019 (V): Allison Suba
2018 (IV): Toby Keymer 

2017 (III): Willem Crispin-Frei 
2016 (II): Taylor Stark 
2015 (I): Taylor Stark

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