Homer in Sicily: An Academic Conference and Tour of Ancient Sites
Homeric Thrinacia – our Sicily – is the legendary home of the Cattle of the Sun, the Cyclops, the Laestrygonians, Aeolus, and close neighbor of Skylla and Charybdis. Samuel Butler, in the nineteenth century, memorably theorized that the Odyssey’s author was a young Sicilian woman, glimpsed in the figure of Nausicaa. Otherwise, surprisingly few scholars have explored Sicily’s association with the Homeric epics, the Odyssey in particular. The goal of this conference is to bring scholars from a variety of disciplines to Siracusa to discuss Homer’s epic vision and to visit the archaeological traces of the mythic places and beings of the Odyssey.
Our conference will take place at the Exedra Mediterranean Center, steps from the temples of Athena and Apollo in Ortigia, the heart of ancient Syracuse. It will include academic presentations as well as visits to the Neapolis archeological park and Paolo Orsi museum, where we will see Siracusa’s famed theater and artistic finds from throughout the region. We will also enjoy traditional Sicilian hospitality, with group dinners and catered lunches featuring local specialties. At the conclusion of the conference, an optional tour will visit such sites as the Cyclops Islands, Agrigento (Akragas), Selinunte (Selinous), Segesta, the Villa Romana del Casale, Himera, and Taormina (exact itinerary to be announced).
The official languages of the conference are English and Italian. Proposals for presentations related to any aspect of Homer in Sicily are welcome. Abstracts for papers should be 150-300 words in length and prepared for blind review. Proposals for panel discussions should include contact information for all participants. Presentation times are 20-30 minutes for individual papers; 60-90 minutes for panel discussions. Scholars are welcome to participate without presenting a paper.
Selected proceedings will be published by Parnassos Press in a volume entitled Homer in Sicily, edited by Heather Reid and Seemee Ali and available through JSTOR and amazon.com
Please send abstracts and direct questions to Heather L. Reid at firstname.lastname@example.org Abstracts received by July 15, 2020 will be considered for early acceptance. Final deadline for abstracts is October 15, 2020.