I am a specialist in teaching and researching Coptic hagiography and the Late Antique and Early Islamic history of Egypt. I am also trained in Arabic, Syriac, Ethiopic, and Classical and Byzantine Greek. My DPhil was supervised by Professor Gesa Schenke and Professor Phil Booth. I passed my Transfer of Status, Confirmation of Status, and my viva without corrections.
I have a huge amount of teaching experience at university level, including as a graduate tutor in the Griffith Institute for the Elementary and Advanced Coptic courses on which I taught early Christian history and Coptic language and texts, and previously taught archaeology and the history of Egyptology. In Trinity Term 2020, I passed the university's Developing Learning and Teaching course accredited by SEDA and in Hilary Term 2022 I undertook the Ashmolean Museum and TORCH's Eloquent Things teaching with objects course. Building on this, in Michaelmas Term 2022 and Hilary Term 2023 I was an Ashmolean Junior Teaching Fellow, leading symposia with undergraduate and postgraduate students on the themes of 'Believing' and 'Work'.
As well as teaching, I do a lot of outreach for the University of Oxford, and am currently an Outreach Tutor with the History Faculty and participating in the Classics Faculty's 'Classical Conversations' initiative. During summer 2022, I taught at the University's UNIQ summer school in the History Faculty, St John's College's Inspire Programme, OxNet Access Week at Pembroke College, and the Aim for Oxford summer school at Christ Church. This summer, I am teaching at UNIQ again for the History Faculty and reprising my role at OxNet Access Week.
On the representation of visions in Coptic hagiographical texts (DPhil thesis)
The formulation of a methodology and criteria for universally assessing the standard of heritage management: Pilot study using Egypt as its case study (MA dissertation)
Scientific analysis of the effects of acids and alkalis on Egyptian blue pigment (MA research)
Dwarf burials in ancient Egypt: A contextual study c. 4,500-332 BC (BA dissertation)
Agar, C. and Booth, P. in preparation, ‘English Translation of the Posthumous Miracles of Apa Claudius’.
Batovici, D. and Agar, C. in preparation, 'Textual notes on 1 Clement in Coptic'.
Agar, C. in preparation, Seeing is Believing: Visions of the Holy in Coptic Hagiography. Egypt from the Ptolemies to the Early Middle Ages series. Tübingen: Mohr Siebeck.
Navratilova, H. and Agar, C. in preparation, 'Puzzle of a Pyramid Life'. Will submit to Egyptian Archaeology.
Agar, C. under review, ‘Utopias in Christian Egypt: How Heaven and Hell are Presented in Hagiography Preserved in Coptic’ in A. Ravani, J. Cogbill, and A. Neuhauser (eds.), Reshaping the World, Proceedings of the Oxford University Byzantine Society’s 24th Annual International Graduate Conference. Leiden: Brill.
Agar, C. forthcoming, 'Politics and Piety: Martyr Saints and Emperors Presented in Hagiography Preserved in Coptic' in R. Whelan, M. McEvoy, and R. Flower (eds.), Christian Political Cultures in Late Antiquity. Liverpool: Liverpool University Press.
Agar, C. forthcoming, 'The State of the Field: Distinctions of Gender in Late Antique Egypt' in N. Websdale and J. Chandler (eds.), Passing Judgement, Proceedings of the Oxford University Byzantine Society's 25th Annual International Graduate Conference. Leiden: Brill.
Agar, C. 2022, 'The saint of the issue: Apa Menas'. The Byzantinist 12, 9-11.
Will present the paper 'The Other Thekla: Gender in a Coptic Martyrdom', at an upcoming conference (title TBC) at the Université Libre de Bruxelles (INVITED)
Will present the 30-minute paper 'Hagiography as life-writing' at the Ancient Lives Seminar series in the Oxford Centre for Life-Writing, Wolfson College and Faculty of English, in the academic year 2022-23 (INVITED)
Administrator for the 'Graffiti Quest' Workshop, 17th July 2023
Chaired at the Oxford University Byzantine Society's 25th International Graduate Conference, 24th-25th February 2023
Presented the 20-minute paper 'Distinctions of Gender in Coptic Hagiography: Sex, Suffering, and Sainthood' at the Oxford University Byzantine Society’s 25th International Graduate Conference, 24th-25th February 2023
Presented the 20-minute paper 'Coptic Hagiography from the 7th to 11th Centuries' at the A Conversation between Hagiographical Traditions Workshop, 30th September 2022 (INVITED)
Presented the 30-minute paper 'Shaping Coptic Christian identity: Forging collective memories through hagiography' at the Forgotten Christianities seminar series, 20th June 2022 (INVITED)
Chaired the paper ‘The Epigraphy of the Dome of the Rock in Relation to the Sacred Landscape of Jerusalem’ at the University of Oxford Byzantine Graduate Seminar series, 28th March 2022
Support staff at the conference 'Hesychasm in context', 17th-18th March 2022
Presented the 20-minute paper 'Utopias in Coptic hagiography: Presentations of heaven and hell' at the Oxford University Byzantine Society's 24th International Graduate Conference, 25th – 26th February 2022
Chaired at the Oxford University Byzantine Society’s 24th International Graduate Conference, 25th – 26th February 2022
Presented the 60-minute paper 'The cult of saints in Coptic texts: Saints, sinners, and pilgrims in early Christian Egypt' at the Leicester Ancient Egyptian Society, 20th November 2021 (INVITED)
Presented the 30-minute paper 'Christians in Egypt: Between the ancient Egyptian gods and Islam' at the Virtual History Society, 21st October 2021 (INVITED)
Presented the 10-minute paper ‘The Cult of Saints on the bank of the Nile: How did worship function in this extreme environment?’ at the 53rd Society for the Promotion of Byzantine Studies Spring Symposium, 27th – 29th March 2021
Presented the 30-minute paper ‘Analysing visions experienced by saints and supplicants: What, how, and why?’ for the University of Liverpool ACE Work in Progress seminar series, 12th November 2020, Liverpool and as the inaugural paper for the University of Oxford Byzantine Graduate Seminar series, 25th January 2021 (INVITED)
Presented the 20-minute paper ‘Transition and transformation in Coptic hagiography: Visions as transformative experiences’ at the Oxford University Byzantine Society’s 22nd International Graduate Conference, 28th – 29th February 2020
Chaired at the Oxford University Byzantine Society’s 22nd International Graduate Conference, 28th-29th February 2020
Supported tours at the conference 'Egypt's heartland: Regional perspectives on Hierakonpolis, Elkab and Edfu', 18th-19th July 2019
Presented the 20-minute paper 'Celebrating sanctity: The public celebrations of saints in Coptic hagiography' at the Centre for Byzantine, Ottoman and Modern Greek Studies' 20th Annual Postgraduate Colloquium, 1st June 2019
Chaired at the 3rd Sudan Studies Conference, 4th May 2019
Chaired at the Oxford University Byzantine Society's 21st International Graduate Conference, 22nd-23rd February 2019
Presented the 20-minute paper 'Blue vs the world: Scientific analysis of the effects of acids and alkalis on the stability of synthesised Egyptian blue' at the Egyptology Graduate Seminar series, 15th November 2018