(Podcast) Discovering Ancient Greece and Rome in the Modern City

Today on Gotham, Beth Harpaz, editor of CUNY SUM, interviews Elizabeth Macaulay-Lewis about Classical New York: Discovering Greece and Rome in Gotham. The new volume, co-edited with Matthew McGowan, explores how and why New York City became a showcase for the art and architectural styles of ancient Greece and Rome — from the public spaces at Rockefeller Center to the Gould Memorial Library at Bronx Community College.

Walking around New York, Macaulay-Lewis says she “was struck by how many classical-looking buildings there were.” Indeed, references to the myths, gods, motifs and structures of the ancient world are seemingly everywhere: in courthouses, museums and libraries, in arches and columns, in Latin inscriptions and sculptures.

But these classical references aren’t just about aesthetics or engineering. They also symbolize the aspirations of a city that saw itself as a capital of learning, culture, and civic life, on par with the finest institutions of the ancient world.

Listen to their interview here.