Two of the students will receive the prestigious Gates Cambridge Scholarship from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation: Daniel Hanigan will begin a PhD at Cambridge while Grant Kynaston will take up an MPhil. The pair will be joined by Elisabeth Slingsby, who has received the Cambridge Australia Bragg Scholarship, while Edward Armstrong will head off to Scotland, where he will undertake a PhD at St Andrews.
Daniel Hanigan (pictured far right) initially enrolled in a combined Bachelor of Science/Bachelor of Arts degree with a focus on mathematics, Daniel pivoted toward the Bachelor of Arts (Honours) and was awarded the University Medal. "I pursued an eclectic range of topics in Classical Studies, spanning theatrical politics and ancient literary criticism," he says. Daniel continued with a Master of Philosophy, also from the University of Sydney. His PhD at Cambridge will focus on "travel literature" in antiquity, and will examine "the body of surviving texts in light of a variety of hermeneutical frameworks: the relationship between map and text, the intellectual context of ancient geography and ethnography, and developments in the so-called 'spatial turn' in Classical Studies and the humanities more broadly", he says.'
Grant Kynaston (pictured second from left) completed a Diploma of Languages Studies in Arabic and a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) in Classics at the University of Sydney, as well as receiving the prestigious University Medal. He will take up an MPhil at Cambridge. "My research is situated at the intersection of Greek linguistics, performance studies – including the study of ancient Greek music – and textual criticism," Grant says. "This is an interdisciplinary approach that examines performance and composition through phonological theory that will reappraise understudied classical sources." He says he hopes to gain skills in Greek linguistics and is looking forward to taking advantage of the world-class faculty and resources at Cambridge.
Elisabeth Slingsby (pictured third from left) has a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) with an Ancient History major - and is a recipient of the University Medal - and a Master of Philosophy from the University of Sydney. She will combine her understanding of history and philosophy, she says, to focus on "how the Romans in the first century BC used the Greek past to comment on the politics of the present". She hopes her PhD at Cambridge will "shed new light on how the Romans conceptualised their political system over 200 tumultuous years, and provide new insights into how Greek political history was reinterpreted at Rome".
Edward Armstrong (top left) has already completed a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) and an MPhil in the Department of Classics and Ancient History at the University of Sydney. He anticipates enjoying the benefits of the UK's long Classics tradition, and gaining experience as an historian and scholar while undertaking his PhD. At St Andrews Edward will continue his interest in Thucydides, examining the use of stereotypes in his History of the Peloponnesian War. "By creating stereotypes of situations and characterisations of people, particularly leaders, Thucydides presents continuities of human experience," Edward says.
Over the next 3 years, Dr Nicole Wegner will examine popular assumptions about the “ideal soldier” and how cultural myths shape military policies and priorities in Australia and abroad.