Tuesday, February 09, 2010

The Palaeography Chair at Kings College, London

Over on Paleojudaica, Jim Davila draws attention to the scandal that the last Palaeography chair in the UK, at King's College London, is being eliminated. Jim notes an article in today's Guardian:

Writing off the UK's last palaeographer
The decision by a London university to axe the UK's only chair in palaeography has been met by outrage from the world's most eminent classicists. John Crace on why the study of ancient writings matters – and why history will be lost without it

Jim offers an important criticism of an otherwise excellent article,
One criticism of the piece though; it shouldn't assume that subjects like paleography can't bring in research grant money. The research councils and other funding sources recognize the value of such things and are quite willing to fund projects on them if they are well thought out.
Indeed. Some of the most successful units in gaining research grants have been those specializing in ancient texts. In addition to Jim's own successes, you need only to think of ITSEE at the University of Birmingham.

So what can be done? For a start, we can spread the word. There are already 4,774 members of this Facebook group:

Save Palaeography at King's London

5,995 people have signed the petition:

Save Palaeography at King's College London

When you're done, don't forget to tweet it. Moreover, if you have a blog, why not blog it too?

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