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The Meretrician Satirist and the Elegiac Procuress: The Mercenary Body in Juvenal’s Seventh Satire

By Victoria Hodges (Rutgers University)

As many scholars have noted (Rimmell 2006; Freeman 2014; Barchiesi and Cucchiarelli 2006; Bartsch 2015), the satirical body provides a means through which the poet is able not only to engage with and consume a self-referential generic precedent, but also to provide a literary antidote for societal ‘fleshiness’ and violability. Through this lens, the satirical body functions as an interpretive framework used to flesh out and configure the poets’ moralistic principles (Barchiesi and Cucchiarelli 2006).

The Enslaved Lector in Catullan Invective: Toward a Ventriloquist Reading of Roman Literature

By Christopher Londa (Yale University)

Though scholars have long recognized that enslaved or formerly enslaved lectores “played a vital role in aristocratic Romans’ experience of literature,” (Starr 1991; Horsfall 1995) the oral performances of these figures have rarely factored into modern interpretive frameworks. Instead, scholars have largely privileged the text as the default point of mediation between author and reader. Recent years, however, have born witness to an explosion of scholarship emphasizing the Roman literary system’s reliance on enslaved labor (e.g. Moss 2021; Blake 2016; Habinek 2005).

The daughter and the dowry in Plautus’ Trinummus

By Sharon L. James (University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill)

One of only two Roman comedies to stage no female character, Plautus’ Trinummus has been dismissed as dull by scholars from Wilamowitz to Segal to Sharrock. I ar­gue that it is an overlooked source on women’s lives: in its contin­uous fuss about providing a dowry for an off-stage daughter, Trinummus offers tantalizing perspectives on women’s marriages that have been over­looked in its scanty scholarship.

Roman imperial expansion and the confined spatiality of Plautine comedy

By Robin Kreutel (University of Cambridge)

It is well established that the defeat over Carthage in the 2nd Punic War marks a watershed moment for Roman but also for wider Mediterranean history. Large-scale militarisation, imperial aspirations, a growing network of non-Roman allies and a huge influx of plunder and people are all ramifications of Rome’s ascendancy over the region in the 3rd and 2nd cent. BCE.

Enjambment in the trimeters of Plautus and Terence: New measures of compositional method and technique

By Joseph Andrew Smith (San Diego State University)

Enjambment in the trimeters of Plautus and Terence:

New measures of compositional method and technique

This presentation assesses enjambment in Roman palliate drama within the framework of modular composition. Modular clause units in Plautus and Terence—composition by set measures of syntax and meter—can be shown to be the predominant vehicle by which playwrights composed and imparted the words of their plays to their actors. Clause enjambment, that is, clauses with syntax spanning verse-end(s), is integral to this comprehensive system of composition.