Tea at 4 p.m. in the Quita Woodward Room, Old Library.
Infrastructure connected with the removal of wastewater forms an important, yet often overlooked, element of the urban landscape. In the Roman city of Pompeii, wastewater infrastructure often took the form of either underground soak-away systems made from reused amphorae, which distributed wastewater beneath floors, or purpose-built drains, which removed wastewater out into the street. Baker explores how these approaches to wastewater removal and infrastructure in Pompeii changed over time, tracing their presence and use at the level of individual households, entire neighborhoods, and finally throughout the city. Through an examination of the architectural, faunal, and ceramic evidence associated with these systems, particularly those recently excavated by University of Cincinnati’s project in the non-elite Porta Stabia neighborhood, Baker demonstrates that shifts in approaches to wastewater infrastructure were closely tied to the wider needs, economic and material resources, and even political circumstances of the city.