Dr. Vernon Provencal
I was born, (mostly) grew up, and educated in Nova Scotia, taking an undergraduate degree in Classics & English at the University of King’s College and receiving my graduate degrees in Classics from Dalhousie University. As a doctoral student, I returned to the King’s Foundation Year Programme to start teaching where I had started learning. I began teaching at Acadia in 1989 and over the years have researched and published in the areas of ancient Greek philosophy (Plato and Aristotle), Greek historiography (Herodotus), myth and sexuality (Ganymede), ancient novel (Apuleius), classical reception (Atwood, Ondaatje, Faulkner), in addition to offering courses on Homer, Hesiod, the Greek tragedians, Virgil, Ovid, Augustine and Dante. I also teach in Halifax Humanities 101 (Homer and Plato), a Clemente-style program which offers free non-credit university education to those below the poverty line in the HRM.
I am married with five children, four grandchildren, an orphaned cat never to be trusted (Kitty Boy) and a getting-old-&-farty dog (Taz, a Leonberger). I read lots of fiction (including all of William Gibson, Salman Rushdie and Haruki Murakami) and play acoustic guitar (about as good or bad as I sing). Students sometimes ask how I became a Classics professor. It was never my intention. One day I was told that no more scholarships were available to me as a graduate student and that if I wanted to go on learning I had to start teaching. I did so with great reluctance, then made the joyous discovery that I was learning by teaching others.
As of 2021, Dr Sonia Hewitt and I have embarked on the project of co-authoring a book on the wine culture in ancient Greece, tentatively titled, Cult of the Grape: Wine Culture in Ancient Greece.