Dr. Greg Anderson, an assistant professor of history at Ohio State University, will discuss “The Mystique of the Ancient Greek Olympics” during the Phebe McClatchy Conley Classics Lecture at 7 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 27.

Anderson, who specializes in ancient Greece, says Greeks’ passion for athletics was so great that some athletes were worshipped for centuries after they died. That love of sports is one reason the modern Olympic Games are such a popular attraction every four years as the world’s athletes come together to compete.

Anderson’s understanding of the Greek political culture allows him to explain how it plays with art and architecture, warfare, memory, identity and other elements of human experience.

He wrote “The Athenian Experiment: Building an Imagined Political Community in Ancient Attica, 508-490 BC” (University of Michigan Press, 2003), which examines the origins of democracy and civic order. He is working on a second book that re-examines early city-states.

Anderson will speak in the Leon S. and Pete P. Peters Education Center located in the Student Recreation Center (at Woodrow and Shaw avenues). The lecture is free and open to the public.

The lecture series honors the memory of Phebe McClatchy Conley, a community leader and Fresno State benefactor. The endowed series brings to campus each year an acclaimed classics scholar for a lecture and presentations in the Classical Studies Program.

Additional information is available at www.csufresno.edu/artshum/lecture_series/0708_anderson.shtml