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)

Submit a Paper!

Submissions for Plebeian IX are now closed. Thank you for submitting!

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 position and Head Associate position will open Sept 29th.

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

Board Structure 2023-24:
Editor-in-Chief: Piper Hays
Deputy Editor-in-Chief: 
Head Associate Editor:
Associate Editors: 
Copy Editors: 

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

Past Conferences:
Click on underlined talks to watch!

2020: The Assembly of the Plebs VI *Cancelled due to COVID-19*
2019: The Assembly of the Plebs V, 15 March 2019, 9:00am-3:00pm, LI 220.

09:00–Room opens for breakfast
09:50–Opening remarks
10:30–Hana Nikčević, Watching me, watching you: depictions of sleep in Hellenistic sculpture and the self-conscious gaze
11:00–Jenny MacPherson, Reading Horror in Seneca’s Phaedra
11:30–Hannah McCarthy, Bloodstained Immortality: Clytemnestra and Medea’s Divisive Reception
1:00–Marcus Tarantino, Suetonius, Caligula and the Senatorial Conspiracy of 39 CE
1:30–Erica Venturo, Terracotta Figurines in the Seleucid Kingdom: Cross-Cultural Interaction through Art
2:00–Kenneth Kim, Affect and Agency in Cicero’s Letters to Tiro
2:30–Leah Stephens, Roman matronaeletting their hair down: ambiguity in the female aesthetics in Ovid’s Ars Amatoria
3:00–Closing Remarks

2018: The Assembly of the Plebs IV, 9 March 2018, 10:30am-3:30pm, LI 220.

10:30–Room opens for breakfast
10:50–Opening remarks
11:00–Erica Venturo: “The Archaeology of Late Roman Greece’s Imperial Administration”
11:35–Sam Minden: “The Roman “Barbarians” and Barbaric Romans: The Ostrogothic Kingdom of Italy and the Slow Disappearance of Roman Power in The West”
12:10–Hannah Lank: “Art Becomes Nature, and Nature Art: A Close Reading of The Ekphrastic Garden in Book Four of Longus’ Daphnis and Chloe”
1:20–Laura Harris: “Dress as an Identifier: The Fetiales and Sacrifice to Fides in Livy Book One”
2:00–Andrew White: “Shortfall in the Ptolemaic Revenue: Economic Policy as a Political Necessity”
2:35–Clifton Tataryn: “The Horror of Seneca’s Oedipus”
3:10–Closing remarks

2017: The Assembly of the Plebs III, 10 March 2017, 10:30am-3:30pm, LI 220.

10:30 – Room Opens for Breakfast
10:50 – Opening Remarks (Willem Crispin-Frei and Professor Eph Lytle)
11:00 – Jeffery Schulman: “(A)rising in the East: The Case for a Palmyrene Sol Invictus”
11:35 – Sophia Alkhoury: “Evaluating the Religious Spectrum of the Ancient Greek World and the Magic Within It”
12:10 – Andrew Mayo: “Sophism and the Irrational in Cyclops”
12:45 – Seán Stewart: ““I Don’t Know How to Greek”: The Background and Social Context of P.Col. 4 66”
1:20 – Lunch Break
2:00 – Laura Harris: “Barbarian or Greek Murder? Medea’s Gift of Clothing and Identity in Euripides’ Medea”
2:35 – Samantha Mazzilli: “Romana simplicitate loqui: Latin Profanity and Power”
3:10 – Closing Remarks (Willem Crispin-Frei)

2016: The Assembly of the Plebs! 11 March 2016, 10am-4pm, LI 220.

Watch the full conference here.

10:00 – Introductory Remarks and Breakfast
10:30 – Hadley Staite: “Nudity in the Performance of The Libation Bearers
11:00 – Elena Shadrina: “The Impact of the Rise of the Visigothic Kingdom in Spain on the Disappearance of Roman Imperial Presence in the West
11:30 – Hana Carrozza: “The Virgin and the Whore: Powerful Women from Late Antiquity
12:00 – Seán Stewart: “Geiseric and the Fall of Rome
12:30 – Lunch
1:30 – Amogh Sahu: “Realism and the Oikos: Aristotle and the Realist/Liberal Debate
2:00 – Russell Durward: “Law Under Justinian in a Christian Empire
2:30 – Break
2:45 – Melissa Tobin: “Rape and the Struggle for Power in Ovid and Statius
3:15 – Willem Crispin-Frei: “Aqua est Omnis Divisa in Partes Tres: The Inequalities of Water Distribution in Ancient Rome
3:45 – Closing Remarks
4:00 – End

2015: Undergraduate Conference on the Classical World,
20 March 2015, 10:30am-3:30pm, LI 220.

Watch the full filmed portion of the conference here. Due to technical difficulties, only some talks were filmed.

10:30 – Opening words, settling in, preamble
11:00 – Toby Keymer: “The Wounded and the Dead: Objections to the Orthodox Model of the Hoplite Phalanx
11:30 – Gillian Scott: “You’ve got a Friend in Me: Tactics of Amicitia in Cicero and Pliny’s Letters of Request”
12:00 – Break for lunch
12:30 – Kate McGrath: “The Western Argolid Regional Project: Final Report”
1:00 – Ashley Raymer: “Gothic/Roman Identity”
1:30 – Sean Stewart: “Three Effects of Climate Change on the Later Roman Empire”
2:00 – Hadley Staite: “Roman Collegia as Corporate Entities”
2:30 – Taylor Stark: “The role of Mycenae Shaft Graves in the creation of a stratified society”
3:00 – Run off, final remarks

Past Editors-in-Chief 
2020: Leah Schweitzer Gukathasan
2019: Erica Venturo 
2018: Toby Keymer 
2017: Willem Crispin-Frei 
2016: Taylor Stark 
2015: Taylor Stark 

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