CFP: Poetics and politics: New approaches to Euripides

Poetics and politics. New approaches to Euripides

Lyon International Conference
June 27th-29th, 2019

In the last hundred years, scholars have approached the relation between poetics and politics in Euripides's dramas from different perspectives. Characteristic of the French-Belgian school of the middle of the 20th century was the attention paid to formal, dramatic or structural inconsistencies, which were thought to be justified by and to point to allusions to contemporary events or people. Severely criticized for the circularity of its argumentation and its disregard of poetic interpretations, this ‘old historicist’ approach was followed by the anthropological turn of J.-P. Vernant and P. Vidal-Naquet's work, which led to a new trend of studies often labelled ‘New Historicism’. This approach became particularly influential in 1990 with the publication of the collective volume Nothing To Do With Dionysus. This mode of historicism was concerned primarily with the tragedies' ideological functions in the context of Athenian democracy; it endeavored to show that tragedy reflected democratic ideology while also displaying resistance to it – a « broken mirror » as P. Vidal-Naquet put it. The attention paid by New Historicism to the social context of performance and to the political institutions that were in charge of the plays' productions, as well as to the audience of the plays, was an important and fruitful innovation, but it has been duly criticized for its short-comings, especially for its disregard of poetic form and of individual authorship. Some scholars, feeling that the plays were reduced to being a somewhat vague and passive reflection of general socio-political tensions, reacted by a renewed kind of formalism and a surge of interest in the meaning of individual plays.

In recent years, the tragic art of Euripides has been examined in more eclectic ways involving not only social, political, anthropological and religious but also (meta-)poetic, structural, dramaturgical and musical considerations. These perspectives are either juxtaposed to encompass the complexity of Euripides's drama or articulated to each other, aesthetic form being seen as a mode of political thought. The context within which drama needs to be interpreted has been expanded to include not only the institutions and dynamics of the Athenian city, but also other forms of poetry, art and thought to which the poet alludes in a constantly creative way or with which he competes. The conference aims at bringing together such diverse approaches to reexamine the relation between Euripides's poetics and the politics of his time.

Some of the questions that the conference hopes to raise are the following:

  • How would we define today the political meaning of Euripides's plays?
  • How is this meaning articulated to their form, structure, rhythm and other poetic aspects? How do studies on the materiality of Greek drama contribute to the question of politics?
  • How does performance actualize or enhance the political impact of the tragic text and how do performance studies contribute to the political interpretation of Euripides's plays?
  • Should we renounce the idea that Euripides is conveying a precise political message in a given play or does the combination of new methods allow us to identify his voice in a more subtle way than before? What is the specificity of his tragedies and of his approach to politics?
  • Does a political interpretation preclude a search for a universal human meaning? When both meanings coexist, what are the poetical or dramaturgical means that unite or distinguish them?
  • How can we integrate the fragmentary plays in the interpretation of Euripides's politics?
  • Can the political reception of Euripides's plays throughout the centuries help us frame in a fresh way the relation between Euripides's poetics and the politics of his time?

Questions and abstracts (no more than half a page) should be sent before October 12th, 2018 to: pascale.brillet@mom.fr

Submissions will be examined by the members of the scientific committee: Pascale Brillet-Dubois (Université Lumière Lyon 2), Anna Beltrametti (Università di Pavia), Donald Mastronarde (UC Berkeley), Boris Nikolsky (RANEPA, Moscow), Anne-Sophie Noel (ENS Lyon), Victoria Wohl (University of Toronto).

PhD students' and young scholars' submissions are particularly welcome.

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(Photo: "Handwritten" by A. Birkan, licensed under CC BY 2.0)

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The Society for Ancient Studies (SAS)—an interdisciplinary graduate student organization at New York University —is hosting its second-annual one-day undergraduate conference on the ancient world on Friday, February 7th, 2020 in Manhattan. This conference, organized and moderated by graduate students for talented undergraduates in New York and surrounding states, will offer participants the opportunity to present their scholarship in the engaged professional setting of an academic conference.

Participants will be expected to present a 15-minute paper to a forum of their undergraduate peers, graduate students, and NYU faculty. Submissions may be a condensed version, or a particularly strong chapter, of an undergraduate thesis, an exceptional course paper, or an independent research project. We welcome work informed by any and all theories and methodologies, and encourage submission from students working in any discipline (e.g. Classical Philology, Anthropology, Archaeology, History, etc.) or geo-temporal focus (e.g. Mediterranean and Atlantic Studies; Egyptology; Pre-Columbian, Near East, and East Asian Civilizations).

Food will be provided to all participants, and any audio-visual necessities will be arranged. Some local travel reimbursements will also be available.

ABSTRACT DEADLINE: Friday, November 22nd, 2019

View full article. | Posted in Calls for Papers on Tue, 09/17/2019 - 10:03am by Erik Shell.

The Classical Association of Ghana

2nd International Classics Conference in Ghana (ICCG)
8th to 11th October 2020

University of Ghana, Legon, Ghana

Theme: Global Classics and Africa: Past, Present, and Future

The late 1950s and early 1960s ushered in a period when many African countries were gaining political independence. Immediately, there was an agenda to unite African nations, and a policy of Africanization began to gain ground. In the area of education, this Africanization process was vigorously pursued. In Ghana the Institute of African Studies was established, and an Encyclopaedia Africana project, originally conceived by W. E. B. DuBois, was revived. In Nigeria, new universities were established to counter the colonial-based education that was present at the University of Ibadan, and in some East African countries there were fears that foreign university teachers would not be able to further the Africanization of university education.

View full article. | Posted in Calls for Papers on Mon, 09/16/2019 - 1:52pm by Erik Shell.

Honor and Shame in Classical Antiquity

Thirteenth Annual Graduate Conference in Classics
Friday, March 20, 2020
The Graduate Center, City University of New York

Keynote Speaker: Margaret Graver, Dartmouth College

Virtue, Cicero argues, seeks no other reward for its labors and dangers beyond that of praise and glory. From the earliest days of the ancient Mediterranean, the pursuit of honor and avoidance of shame have shaped societies’ value systems. Achilles wages war according to a strict honor code, while Hesiod’s personified goddess, Shame, is the last to depart the earth as a rebuke of humanity’s wickedness. Far from belonging to the static code of an aristocratic warrior class, as was once understood, honor and shame are increasingly seen as part of a complex and polyvalent ethical system. They manifest themselves not only in the heroic self-assertion of ancient epic but also in a variety of other arenas, such as, for example, philosophical treatises, gender relations and sexual mores, the lives of enslaved peoples, Athenian law and politics, the performance of Roman state identity, and religious belief.  Thus they are pervasive throughout literature, thought, and society in the ancient world.

View full article. | Posted in Calls for Papers on Mon, 09/16/2019 - 9:57am by Erik Shell.

High school Latin programs (along with Classics programs at the college or university level) are in perpetual peril, and keeping any program alive contributes to the ongoing effort to keep our field afloat and relevant, while also continuing to provide students with all of the benefits that we know that Latin offers. Monmouth College’s Classics Department spearheaded a successful, broad-based effort to resist the proposed elimination of the thriving Latin program at Monmouth-Roseville (IL) High School (MRHS) in Spring 2019.

This reflection is meant as a case study for understanding and then addressing the issue of threatened Latin programs across the country. I will lay out the factors and steps that led to the initial decision to drop the program, those that we discovered were critical in the eventual success of the resistance effort, and roles that a college or university Classics programs can play to retain their comrade programs, which cultivate many eventual Classics students and majors. 


Figure 1: Monmouth-Roseville High School in Monmouth, IL. Photo Credit: Robert Holschuh Simmons.

Background on the situation at Monmouth-Roseville 

View full article. | Posted in on Thu, 09/12/2019 - 8:49pm by Robert Holschuh Simmons.

Sailing with the Gods: Religion and Maritime Mobility in the Ancient World

           Sponsored by: The Society for Ancient Mediterranean Religions

           Location: Grand Hotel Excelsior, Floriana, Malta

           Dates: June 17-21, 2020

           Ritual practices dedicated to maritime success appear across a wide span of human cultural history, from the Mediterranean to the North Sea, Southeast Asia across the Pacific to the west coast of the Americas. Culturally-constructed seafaring rituals could be seen as spiritual or superstitious, and respond to the combination of risk and profit endemic in even short voyages by water. Maritime religion infuses all water-borne contact across cultural boundaries; the crafts of those who build rafts, canoes, and sailing vessels; navigational skills which may reach back to ancestors who have faded into cultural legend; and myriad mnemonic and naming strategies extending to littoral markers and celestial patterns. Mythic and ritual responses are accordingly complex, ranging from apotropaia to the divine authorization of civic structures, shipboard shrines and functional epithets which could link divinities, heroes and nearly-deified rulers to the control of the waves and winds.

View full article. | Posted in Calls for Papers on Mon, 09/09/2019 - 2:33pm by Erik Shell.

Please find a list of award and fellowship deadlines for this Fall:

View full article. | Posted in SCS Announcements on Mon, 09/09/2019 - 9:09am by Erik Shell.

ORBIS: The Stanford Geospatial Network Model of the Roman World (from now on: Orbis) is an interactive scholarly web application that provides a simulation model of travel and transport cost in the Roman Empire around 200 CE. Walter Scheidel and his team at Stanford University designed and launched the site in 2011–12, and the project saw a significant upgrade in 2014 (the old version is still available). The project is currently concluded.

The aim of Orbis is to allow investigation of the concrete conditions of travel in the ancient world, with a particular focus on the 3rd-century Roman route and transportation network. Orbis is a response to the long-standing scholarly debate about visual representations and study of “spatial practice” in the premodern world: traditional mapping approaches fail to convey the complexity of the variables involved in travel practices and provide a flat view of phenomena that are strongly connected with space and movement, such as trade, economic control, and imperialism. Orbis was conceived to respond to the specific question of how travel and transport constraints affected the expansion of the Roman Empire.

View full article. | Posted in on Thu, 09/05/2019 - 10:02pm by Chiara Palladino.
The Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation is now accepting applications for the Career Enhancement Fellowship for Junior Faculty program and the Career Enhancement Adjunct Faculty Fellowship. The Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation administers these fellowships through a grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, along with the Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellows Dissertation Grants, which opens in mid-September.
 
View full article. | Posted in Awards and Fellowships on Thu, 09/05/2019 - 10:55am by Erik Shell.
"Empty Theatre (almost)"by Kevin Jaako, licensed under CC BY 2.0

The Braggart Soldier

The Shackouls Honors College at Mississippi State University presents a performance of the Braggart Soldier, a Roman comedy by Plautus.

The play, directed by Dr. Donna L. Clevinger, will be performed at 6:00 p.m. on Tuesday, September 24th and Wednesday, September 25th, 2019 in Griffis Hall Courtyard, Zacharias Village. Both performances will go up rain or shine and be free to the public.

This production is part of the Honors College Classical Week 2019. For additional information, call 662-325-2522.

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(Photo: "Empty Theatre (almost)" by Kevin Jaako, licensed under CC BY 2.0)

View full article. | Posted in Performances on Thu, 09/05/2019 - 10:17am by Erik Shell.

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