Dr. Palaima's topic, Home Front and War Front in Ancient and Modern Times, will look at how 20th and 21st-century western cultures have sheltered citizens from the realities of warfare and the negative consequences for soldiers, for decision-making about war, and for civilians back home.
Dr Palaima, Raymond F. Dickson Centennial Professor at the University of Texas at Austin, is a MacArthur Fellow (1985-90). His special field of interest is Aegean studies; non-Aegean interests include war and violence studies and general cultural and political topics. He is a regular op-ed contributor to the Austin American-Statesman and writes book reviews and occasional opinion essays for the Times Higher Education Supplement. For the last eight years, he has taught the first half of UT's renowned summer intensive Greek program. He is the 2004 recipient of the Texas Exes Jean Holloway Award for Excellence in Teaching.
The Phi Beta Kappa Fellows Lectureship provides speakers for special occasions sponsored by Phi Beta Kappa groups. Established in 1942, the lectureship is one of the important activities sponsored by the Phi Beta Kappa Fellows, a group of Phi Beta Kappa members organized to foster and advance the welfare of the society and the ideals for which it stands. By way of its panels of distinguished speakers, the lectureship contributes directly to the intellectual life of the campus and community.
Phi Beta Kappa was founded at the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg in 1776 and is the nation's oldest and most prestigious undergraduate honors organization. There are 270 chapters in the United States, including 13 chapters in Virginia. Each state's chapters are designated with a letter from the Greek alphabet to indicate where the chapter fits chronologically. Roanoke's chapter is Nu of Virginia. Phi Beta Kappa has more than a half-million members across the country.