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From the CLASSICISTS mailing list:

Ego primos iambos ostendi Latio: Re-evaluating Horace’s Epodes

Horace proclaims his Epodes an innovative triumph (ego primos iambos/ ostendi Latio, Ep. 1.19.23f.) yet until very recently they have remained in the gutter of the Augustan canon; this unashamedly low poetry collection has suffered an equally low status in scholarship. For some Horace’s uncompromising iambic persona seems too unsavoury for ‘serious’ study; for others the Epodes pale in comparison with his Odes and are dismissed as the product of Horace’s poetic early years (the B-Side to the Satires). Contemporary scholarship, however, is beginning to readdress the balance: three commentaries on the collection (Cavarzere, Mankin, Watson), in addition to important studies on the collection’s unity, representations of the Horatian persona(e), and consideration of the Epodes’ relationship to the Greek iambic tradition have helped to revive critical interest in Horace’s Epodes.

This conference seeks to build on this work with the aim of rehabilitating the Epodes as poems with a complex literary texture. In particular, it seeks to address the relationship of the Epodes to Horace’s other generically ‘lowly’ poetry, the Satires 1-2 and his Epistles 1-2, and also to re-evaluate the collection’s relationship to Horace’s poetic contemporaries and near-contemporaries. As such, this conference will situate itself in relation to the flourishing contemporary critical interest in Horace’s hexameter works (Sat. 1-2; Ep. 1-2), and the predominant intertextual reading practices of Augustan literary scholarship.

Call for Papers:
Papers on any aspect of the Epodes are invited, but particularly welcome are those papers which relate the Epodes to Horace’s Satires and Epistles, and which consider aspects of intertextuality with Republican and Augustan poetry. This conference will take place on Monday 2nd and Tuesday 3rd of July 2012.

Keynote speakers are Emily Gowers and Ellen Oliensis.

Topics may include but are by no means limited to:

  • Epodes and Horace’s Satires 1-2
  • Epodes and Horace’s Epistles 1-2
  • Epodes and Lucilius
  • Epodes and Catullus
  • Epodes and the Roman Love Elegists
  • Epodes and Phaedrus
  • Epodes and Augustan Rome
  • Horace’s relationship with literary tradition
  • Horace’s career trajectory

Please submit a title and abstract of 300 words to Dr Philippa Bather (philippa.bather@manchester.ac.uk) 30th December 2011.