Call for Chapters: Pseudo-Oppian's Cynegetica

CALL FOR CHAPTERS

Pseudo-Oppian’s Cynegetica ­­– On the Hunt for Ethics and Poetics

Since the beginning of the 20th century, the Cynegetica of Pseudo-Oppian has received limited scholarly attention. However, philological efforts such as Otto Rebmann’s book Sprachliche Neuerungen (1918), Wolfgang Schmitt’s commentary on book 1 (1969) and especially Manolis Papathomopoulos’ Teubneriana (2003) have all laid a solid foundation for further hermeneutical study. These works were explored in some detail by Adam Nicholas Bartley (2003) and Giuseppe Agosta (2009) in their respective monographs and are accompanied by a selection of journal articles on diverse topics such as textual criticism, meter and the question of authorship.

This volume aims to collect and develop scholarly approaches to the Cynegetica by focusing on unexplored areas of this fascinating example of Greek Imperial poetry. More precisely, this collection aims to concentrate on at least four strands of literary functionality:

    • First, how do we examine the referential function of the poem? Much of the Cynegetica relates to a reality beyond the text. One finds descriptions of animals, geographical areas, peoples and hunting methods that the author claims to know about or has possibly even seen with his own eyes. How do these observations inform us about the reality of hunting in antiquity? How do we explore the interactions between reality and fictionality within the text?

    • Second, the Cynegetica is replete with ethical comments on the vices, virtues and behaviours of animals and humans alike. At the same time, it is dedicated to both emperor and goddess. The question is this: How do we evaluate the appellative function of the text? What do we make of these moral-philosophical statements? And how do we locate them within the political framework of the Severan dynasty? What are the theological and religious implications of the text? Is there an animal ethics in the Cynegetica?

    • Third, there is still ample room for exploration with regard to the poem’s aesthetic function. What are the hermeneutical consequences of its linguistic innovations? How do the intertextual relations to older didactic poetry (esp. the Halieutica) and other hunting manuals (e.g. Grattius, Nemesianus, Xenophon, etc.) manifest themselves? Is there a way to navigate between the observed mosaic character of the piece and a more coherent overarching structure?

    • Fourth, and finally, the project invites contributions on the creative and scholarly reception of the Cynegetica as well as the cultural and intellectual environment and implications of the poem’s reception history. Why was the text so popular in the 16th century? How do we judge its value as a philosophical argument within the contemporary Cartesian view of animals? What led to its neglect throughout the following centuries? How do we read the poem in light of the modern animal-rights debate?

In sum, the goal of this volume is to function as a prism by bringing together scholars from various academic levels, backgrounds, and study directions in order to develop a diverse portfolio of ideas, approaches and perspectives to this challenging yet understudied text.

If you would like to contribute a chapter to this volume, I would kindly ask you to submit your title, an English-language abstract (no longer than 500 words), and a short biographical note, preferably by

1 December 2020. Please send this to stephan.renker@gmail.com.

The deadline for the final chapters (6,000–9,000 words) will be 1 March 2021.

Konstanz/Shanghai, 28 September 2020 Stephan Renker (SISU, Shanghai)

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The new Classics Everywhere initiative, launched by the SCS in 2019, supports projects that seek to engage communities worldwide with the study of Greek and Roman antiquity in new and meaningful ways. As part of this initiative the SCS has been funding a variety of projects ranging from reading groups comparing ancient to modern leadership practices to collaborations with artists in theater, music, and dance. This post centers on projects that promote emotional well-being and use Greek texts to facilitate conversations on current social justice issues, from New York to Chicago and San Francisco.

View full article. | Posted in on Fri, 06/26/2020 - 7:31am by .

Dear members (and past Annual Meeting participants),

After extensive research and discussion, AIA and SCS staff and officers have decided that the January 2021 Joint Annual Meeting scheduled to take place from January 7-10 in Chicago will now be a virtual event. We know that many of you were looking forward to attending paper sessions and other events, to seeing old friends and colleagues, and to making new connections and we recognize that a virtual event cannot substitute in many ways for a face-to-face experience. However, after full consideration of the public health risks and significant impact of COVID-19 on the ability of most of you to travel to and participate in a large conference in the upcoming months, AIA and SCS have decided that a virtual event is the most prudent course.

View full article. | Posted in SCS Announcements on Thu, 06/25/2020 - 7:13am by Helen Cullyer.

In 2018, a group of scholars founded Mountaintop Coalition, an SCS-affiliated group with a shared interest in advancing the professional goals of Classicists who identify as members of ethnic groups traditionally underrepresented in the field. Mountaintop’s activities focus on practical issues of diversity, equity, inclusion, and access in professional settings.

View full article. | Posted in on Fri, 06/19/2020 - 8:30am by Samuel Ortencio Flores.

Froma I. Zeitlin retired from Princeton University in 2010, where she was the Charles Ewing Professor of Greek Language and Literature in the Department of Classics and Professor in the Department of Comparative Literature. Dr. Zeitlin received her B.A. from Radcliffe-Harvard in 1954 and her Ph.D. from Columbia University in 1970. She is a specialist in Greek literature from Homer to late antiquity, with particular interests in epic, drama and prose fiction. Her publications include Under the Sign of the Shield: Semiotics and Aeschylus’ Seven Against Thebes (1982; 2d ed.

View full article. | Posted in on Fri, 06/12/2020 - 8:50am by Claire Catenaccio.

Alexander G. McKay Prize competition for the best new book in Vergilian studies is now open

The Vergilian Society is pleased to announce the opening of the next competition for the Alexander G. McKay Prize for the best book in Vergilian studies. The prize, which is accompanied by a cash award of $500 or a life membership in the Vergilian Society (valued at $800), is awarded every other year to the book that, in the opinion of the prize evaluation committee, makes the greatest contribution toward our understanding and appreciation of Vergil or topics related to Vergil. Works of literary criticism, biography, bibliography, textual criticism, reference, history, archaeology, and the classical tradition are all eligible, provided that Vergilian studies represent a significant portion of the discussion. The current competition will cover books published during the years 2018 and 2019. The winner will be announced at the Vergilian Society session at the annual meeting of the Society for Classical Studies in Chicago in January 2021. The authors of books being considered for the McKay Prize must be members of the Vergilian Society at the time their books are submitted; for new members or to renew memberships see https://www.vergiliansociety.org/memberships-and-donations.

View full article. | Posted in Awards and Fellowships on Tue, 06/09/2020 - 6:54am by Erik Shell.

A longstanding tendency to ethnocentrism and Hellenophilia implicit in the narrative of the rebirth of Greek science in the Renaissance has shaped the historiography of science and early modern historiography more generally. However, a digital project called Ptolemaeus Arabus et Latinus (PAL) presents an interdisciplinary, broadly conceived, and ongoing (2013–2038) challenge to this , which lies at the crossroads of Classics, Arabic Studies, History of Science and Digital Humanities. It presents a wide range of primary sources as well as translations and critical editions. Given these unusual features some words of introduction are needed to better understand the relevance of this project for the humanities at large. 

View full article. | Posted in on Fri, 06/05/2020 - 12:21pm by .

From the SCS Board of Directors, approved 6/3/20

The Society for Classical Studies condemns the relentless horror of police brutality and murder of black men, women, and children, including George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Atatiana Jefferson, Rekia Boyd, Sandra Bland, Ahmaud Arbery, Tony McDade, Freddie Gray, Eric Garner, Trayvon Martin, Tamir Rice, and Rodney King, to name just a few of the victims. Brutality perpetrated by the police and others stands with mass incarceration and unequal access to healthcare, education, and housing as symptoms of longstanding systemic, structural, and institutional racism in American and European cultures. These are deep problems in society that will not be fixed without radical policy changes at every level of government and across all institutions.   

View full article. | Posted in Public Statements on Wed, 06/03/2020 - 6:20am by Helen Cullyer.

The new Classics Everywhere initiative, launched by the SCS in 2019, supports projects that seek to engage communities worldwide with the study of Greek and Roman antiquity in new and meaningful ways. As part of this initiative the SCS has been funding a variety of projects ranging from reading groups comparing ancient to modern leadership practices to collaborations with artists in theater, music, and dance. In this post we focus on digital projects that engage with ancient texts and discuss the study of Classics during the coronavirus pandemic and beyond.

View full article. | Posted in on Fri, 05/29/2020 - 7:55am by .

Fellowships, Scholarships, and Grants, January – April 2020

Some of our short-term fellowship and Classics Everywhere award winners are deferring use of their awards until Fall 2020 or 2021 owing to COVID-19. However, we congratulate everyone who was awarded a scholarship, fellowship or grant this spring, and we thank our selection committees for their hard work.

TLL Fellowship:

Amy Koenig

Pearson Fellowship:

View full article. | Posted in Awards and Fellowships on Wed, 05/27/2020 - 5:32pm by Helen Cullyer.

Please see below a message from the SCS President, followed by a listing of 2020 graduates:

With in-person celebrations ruled out by the coronavirus pandemic, the Society for Classical Studies is proud to recognize the many graduates at all levels across North America who have chosen to make serious and sustained study of the ancient Mediterranean world a significant part of their education.  For those who are earning PhD’s, we welcome the new contributions to knowledge that each of you has made, and we pledge our support and guidance as you negotiate an even more challenging professional landscape than you signed up for.  We warmly salute all degree-recipients who are pursuing careers in the vital enterprise of K-12 education.  For those who are going in other directions, we take great satisfaction in the variety of paths you will be following.  We hope the classical world will remain an important part of your lives, and we invite you to visit our website, read our blog, and join the SCS as “Friends of Classics.”  And we count on you as lifelong advocates for the value of studying Greco-Roman and ancient Mediterranean history and culture: please take every opportunity to spread the word that the ancient world still presents us with new questions to investigate and with multiple points of reference for thinking through our present-day concerns.  Heartfelt congratulations to all!

View full article. | Posted in Presidential Letters on Mon, 05/25/2020 - 12:11pm by Helen Cullyer.

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