Location: Bowdoin / Catherine K. Baker


Catherine K. Baker

Visiting Instructor in Classics 

Contact Information


Sills Hall - 117A

Teaching this semester

ARCH 1101/ARTH 2090. Greek Archaeology

Introduces the techniques and methods of classical archaeology as revealed through an examination of Greek material culture. Emphasis upon the major monuments and artifacts of the Greek world from prehistory to the Hellenistic age. Architecture, sculpture, fresco painting, and other “minor arts” are examined at such sites as Knossos, Mycenae, Athens, Delphi, and Olympia. Considers the nature of this archaeological evidence and the relationship of classical archaeology to other disciplines such as art history, history, and classics. Assigned reading supplements illustrated presentations of the major archaeological finds of the Greek world.

CLAS 1010. Identity and Experience in the Ancient Mediterranean

Examines how ancient Greeks and Romans thought about their own identities and those of the populations around them. Explores how factors such as race and ethnicity, gender, and social class influenced the way people in the ancient Mediterranean understood and experienced their world. Questions why the Egyptians seemed so strange to the Greek author Herodotus. Did an Athenian immigrant living in Rome feel like a Greek, a Roman, or some combination of the two? Considers how women or freed slaves chose to express their identities through the tombs they built for themselves. Examines texts from ancient authors like Homer and Tacitus, objects, and art--including materials from the Bowdoin College Museum of Art--in order to study how identities could be created and negotiated in the ancient world.

Catherine Baker - Bowdoin College

Catherine K. Baker received her B.A in Classical Archaeology and Anthropology from Brandeis University, an M.A. in the History of Art and Archaeology from the Institute of Fine Arts at New York University, and an M.A. in Classics from the University of Cincinnati, where she is completing her Ph.D.  Catherine’s dissertation explores Roman colonization in the Central Apennine region of Italy from the 4th to the 2nd centuries BCE and examines the material interactions between colonists and existing local populations like the Samnites.  More broadly, Catherine’s research encompasses the intersection of colonization, identity, and exchange in the ancient world.  She is particularly interested in the role that objects, such as coins and pottery, play in shaping communities and identities, and in forging new connections across cultural boundaries. 

Catherine has taught at the University of Cincinnati and at the Intercollegiate Center for Classical Studies in Rome.  Since 2009, she has excavated at Pompeii as part of the University of Cincinnati’s Pompeii Archaeological Research Project: Porta Stabia, and she is currently involved with the publication of the project’s small finds.  Catherine also serves as the pottery specialist for the Contrada Agnese Project of the American Excavations at Morgantina.