CFP: Statius – author of a coherent œuvre?

Statius – author of a coherent œuvre?

Newcastle University, 26-28 May 2022

The œuvre of the Flavian poet Statius is full of surprising contrasts: it consists of the polished Thebaid and the unfinished Achilleid, alongside the Silvae, a collection of semi-improvised occasional poems. At first sight, this œuvre seems as diverse as that of hardly any other extant Latin author. However, Statius uses precisely his occasional poems for setting his works in relation to each other. As early as the praefatio of the first book of the Silvae, Statius justifies himself for publishing these poetic products after just completing his Thebaid. As soon as a successor to his first epic is in sight, he also makes the Achilleid that is about to come into being part of his œuvre. Many implicit and explicit cross-references between the three works suggest that Statius is creatively engaging with the Callimachean-Vergilian idea of a poet’s unified œuvre. In general, when reading Statius’ works in parallel, one is struck by a plethora of shared ideas and motives, whose importance has so far not yet been fully realised and interpreted. These connections between Statius’ works with respect both to their production and reception will be the focus of our international conference.

Possible paper topics include, but are by no means limited to: 

- What is the status of a Roman author’s second epic – especially given that Statius is the first post-Vergilian epicist, who after the completion of his first epic has at least started a second one?

- To what extent does an author’s œuvre comprise imaginary works and works that have not been realised, such as the epic of Domitian that Statius announces in all of his three works?

- Which reference points from the literary tradition are relevant for the idea of a unified œuvre by Statius, and why?

- What does the connection between Statius' works entail for the conception of the missing portion of the unfinished Achilleid?

- To what extent does the reception of Statius' works suggest that they have been seen as a unified œuvre?

- Statius' epics and the Silvae can be read as the two poles of highly polished vs. – allegedly – improvised poetry. What is the meaning, in this context, of shared motives, ideas and poetic techniques?

- The epics are set in the mythological world, the Silvae in contemporary Roman life: does this then also mean that Statius' mythological epics should be read as actually referring to Domitianic Rome, or rather as precisely not referring to it?

Confirmed speakers:

Antony Augoustakis; Helge Baumann; Federica Bessone; Gregor Bitto; Peter Heslin; Alison Keith; Gottfried Kreuz; Helen Lovatt; Charles McNelis; Emily C. Mitchell; Carole Newlands; François Ripoll; Cedric Scheidegger Lämmle; Claire Stocks; Anke Walter

We are applying for external funding, which would cover travel and accommodation.

Please send us an abstract of no more than 500 words by 30 September 2021.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact the organisers:

Gregor Bitto (Gregor.Bitto@ku.de) and Anke Walter (anke.walter@newcastle.ac.uk)

PD Dr. Gregor Bitto

Katholische Universität Eichstätt-Ingolstadt

Sprach- und Literaturwissenschaftliche Fakultät

Klassischen Philologie

Universitätsallee 1

85072 Eichstätt

 

PD Dr. Anke Walter

School of History, Classics and Archaeology

Newcastle University

Newcastle NE1 7RU

Großbritannien

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Delivered by Charlie Bridge (Class of 2011), a Classics Concentrator, at Harvard Commencement on May 27:

Rota Fortunae

Praeses Faust; Decani Professoresque sapientissimi; familiae, amici, et hospites honoratissimi; et tandem condiscipuli carissimi…salvete omnes!  Mihi voluptas magna atque honor altus est huius ceremoniae incipiendae in hoc theatro augusto Trecentensimo.  Nec solum conventum ultimum classis nostrae, anni duomillensimi et undecimi, sed etiam conventum trecentensimum et sexagensimum huius universitatis hodie celebramus. 

Hoc cum animadvertissem gaudebam, propter sensum singularem numeri trecenti et sexaginta.  Ne mihi quidem, litterarum antiquarum discipulo, latere potest orbem omnem in partes trecentas et sexaginta esse divisum.  Venit etiam in mentem orbis quidam praecipuus, qui vitas nostras hos quattuor annos rexit: Rota scilicet Fortunae Harvardiana.  Temporibus antiquis, rota signum erat levis mobilisque naturae fatorum – circuitus vel unus cladem felicissimis afferre atque miseros extollere potest.

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"The State College Area School District faces controversial choices about program reductions in next year’s budget. To meet this challenge the district administration recommended phasing out the four-year Latin program at State College Area High School beginning next year. But the vox populi — students, parents, and the community — vigorously defended the importance of Latin to high school education." Read more of Stephen Wheeler's letter here: http://www.centredaily.com/2011/05/05/2691912/proposed-changes-to-latin-miss.html#ixzz1O3aMAaLD.

View full article. | Posted in Classics in the News on Wed, 06/01/2011 - 7:05pm by Information Architect.

Princeton Classics major Veronica Shi delivered the traditional Latin oration at commencement ceremonies on May 31. Here is the text and translation of her Carmen Salutationis:

Salutatio

Habita in Comitiis Academicis Princetoniae
In Nova Caesarea prid. Kal. Iun.
Anno Salutis MMXI
Anno Academiae CCLXIV

Carmen Salutationis

quibus modis, quîs principiis, amans
Mater, salutem progeniem tuam?
    favete opus, Musae, novis ne
       nunc titubem pedibus rubescens!
nobis aratrix splendida messium
felixque dux, te, praesidium bonum,
    primam saluto, namque florent
       omnia lumine sub tuo; nec
vos nunc silebo, qui sapientia
tuentur Almam semper et omnibus
    Matrem; professoresque laudo
        filia grata scientiamque
eorum cano, quae discipulos alit
virtute, curis et patientia
    benignius: vobis pietas
        magna, amor altus et eruditus.
et vos, parentes: mane scholasticos
nos creditis, quos canticulo meo
   gaudere nunc vidistis: ecce
        spes modo perficimus decoras.

View full article. | Posted in Classics in the News on Wed, 06/01/2011 - 1:15pm by Information Architect.

The Winter 2011 Newsletter is now available for downloading as a pdf. It is also available online.

View full article. | Posted in SCS Announcements on Wed, 05/25/2011 - 5:46pm by .

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View full article. | Posted in Classics in the News on Wed, 05/25/2011 - 1:56pm by Information Architect.

Princeton's web site has a nice story about Veronica Shi, a classics major, who will deliver the traditional Latin oration at commencement ceremonies on May 31. Read it online here.

View full article. | Posted in Classics in the News on Tue, 05/24/2011 - 6:02pm by Information Architect.

The Boston Globe published a nice remembrance of Ernst Badian today. Read it online here …

View full article. | Posted in In Memoriam on Mon, 05/23/2011 - 11:38am by .

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