What can we learn about designing for accessibility from the ancient Greeks? In this talk, Dr. Sneed presents evidence that the ancient Greeks, the very inventors of what we refer to now as classical architecture, were actively engaged in questions of mobility and access. Their answers to these questions are not only surprising, but can also provide interesting and authentic solutions to the requirements of design outlined by federal, state, and local regulations.
Debby Sneed is a Lecturer in the Department of Classics at California State University, Long Beach. She received her B.A. from the University of Wyoming, her M.A. from the University of Colorado, and her Ph.D. from the University of California at Los Angeles. Her research interests are disability in ancient Greece, identity and marginalization in ancient Greece, and the archaeology of ancient Greece. Her recent articles include “The architecture of Access: Ramps at Ancient Greek healing sanctuaries” (Antiquity vol. 94 No. 376), and “Disability and infanticide in ancient Greece” (Hesperia, 2021). Future publications include “Digging While Impaired: Promoting the Accessibility of Archaeology as a Discipline” (under review), and Not Another Other: An Interdisciplinary Approach to Disability and Accommodations in Ancient Greece (monograph in preparation).
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Originally published at architecture.nd.edu.