If we want to see more diversity in Classics, we have to work harder as public historians to change the narrative — by talking to filmmakers, writing mainstream articles, annotating our academic writing and making it open access, and doing more outreach that emphasizes the vast palette of skin tones in the ancient Mediterranean. I’m not suggesting that we go, with a bucket in hand, and attempt to repaint every white marble statue across the country. However, I believe that tactics such as better museum signage, the presentation of 3D reconstructions alongside originals, and the use of computerized light projections can help produce a contextual framework for understanding classical sculpture as it truly was. It may have taken just one classical statue to influence the false construction of race, but it will take many of us to tear it down. We have the power to return color to the ancient world, but it has to start with us.
The ruin of the Second Temple marks a key point in the history of the world. Not only was the Jewish people exiled from the land of Israel, the Jews also lost their war against self-centeredness. For the first time since its inception, the tenet, “Love your neighbor as yourself,” was not the guiding rule within the nation. Jews still had high regard for unity, as they still do to this day, but they began to use it to gain self-centered purposes instead of as a means for correction of the ego and as an asset to be passed on to all mankind.