Laura Martin is a graduate student in the Classical stream of the Department of Art and Archaeology, and a recipient of the Stanley J. Seeger Hellenic Studies Award. She is a recent graduate of Wadham College, the University of Oxford (BA Classical Archaeology and Ancient History, First Class, 2016). She is the recipient of the Peter Derow Prize in the Classics (Wadham College, 2016), the Thomas Whitcombe Greene Prize (Oxford University Faculty of Classics, 2016), and the University of Oxford Gibbs Prize in Classical Archaeology (2016).
During her undergraduate studies, Laura developed an interest in the hybridity and fluidity of the Mediterranean world which produced an interconnected yet internally varied collection of populations, cultures and settlements. Within this Mediterranean canvas, she is chiefly interested by the liminality of the Archaic and Classical Black Sea - between the networks of the central Aegean and those of the indigenous landscape, and between the languages, societies, beliefs, material cultures, and economies of Thracians and Greeks. Her undergraduate thesis, titled A study of ritual hearths discovered by the 2002-4 excavations at the central section of the Kalfata necropolis, Apollonia Pontica, modern Sozopol, was the chief author of these interests, demonstrating that the residents of Apollonia Pontica ritually dealt with the process of death in much the same way as mainland Greeks. In this sense, despite their peripheral location, Apollonians maintained as close a relationship with the wider Greek world well after the establishment of their settlement as they did with their dead after burial. Her other research interests include, but are not limited to, colonisation, trade, and the movements of goods, people, culture, and ideas, early numismatics, and the historiography of classical archaeology.
In addition to undertaking doctoral studies, Laura intends to continue volunteering and teaching as part of further education and cultural heritage access initiatives. Following graduation, she managed the academic and higher education outreach activities of Magdalen College, the University of Oxford. As a first-generation University graduate herself, she is fundamentally aware of the importance of such initiatives, and will remain committed to supporting them throughout her time at Princeton and in the future as an academic.