The award recognizes outstanding work by a Mississippian in bringing the insights of the humanities to public audiences. Cook, a UM faculty member since 2011, is among 29 recipients of the award this year, including peers at other universities and colleges in Mississippi.
Cook’s lecture will focus on his research into a bronze inscription from about 221 to 179 B.C. that records the freeing of a slave woman named Philista in northwestern Greece. The inscription, 3.5 inches square with only 26 words on it, is part of the museum’s David M. Robinson Memorial Collection of Greek and Roman Antiquities.
His talk on the inscription will cover diverse ground, from bronze smelting and the creation of the inscription to slavery and freedom in ancient Greece. His lecture also will consider what can be said about the life Philista, who lived 2,200 years ago.
Cook’s research into the bronze inscription and a gold inscription that records the essence of a defensive treaty between Philip V, king of Macedon from 221 to 179 B.C., and the city of Lysimachia, is made possible through a $21,000 National Endowment for the Humanities fellowship to study the two inscriptions. The fellowship included five months of work in early 2018 at the American School of Classical Studies at Athens in Greece.