Professor Richard Trainor,
King’s College London
We would like to express our deep concerns over the projected dismemberment of the Department of Byzantine and Modern Greek Studies at King’s College London. Although we recognise the need for King’s to make savings, we fail to understand what long-term purpose is served by dismantling a department and allocating its members to two or more different units. Experience teaches that, when a subject area is dispersed around departments and faculties, it never gets priority and in the end loses its capacity and influence. It is only too likely that the university sector will experience further cuts and in such circumstances isolated specialities would be particularly vulnerable. The great strength of King’s has always been that it is the only university in the UK to offer a combined programme in Byzantine and Modern Greek Studies, thereby emphasising the importance of continuity through the centuries. The ideal of Hellenism in its broadest sense, for which King’s stands, is reflected in its Centre for Hellenic Studies and in the Koraes chair. As dismantling the Department of Byzantine and Modern Greek Studies would mean the end of a long and rich tradition, we urge you, in the strongest possible terms, to reconsider your plans.
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