Upcoming Conference: Narrative and argument in Greco-Roman antiquity

On 4-5 July 2024, the University of Reading is hosting a two-day conference which seeks to re-investigate the relationship between narrative and argument in ancient literature (broadly defined).

Amidst strong trends in both rhetorical and narratological analysis, observations about the interplay between narratological structures and rhetorical methods of persuasion have tended to be at the margins of classical scholarship; but there are indications of a shift towards the foreground. For example, recent scholarship on Archaic and Classical Greek Lyric and Drama explores the discourse of ideology through the analysis of literary mechanisms and language shaping the political dimensions of the various genres. Another example of a recent shift is in the field of hagiography, where literary aspects are increasingly investigated in the context of the texts’ assumed ideology, resulting in some interesting insights into the unexpected complexities of the relationship between what the texts appear to want to the readers to do or believe, and the narrative strategies employed in these texts.

To explore and consolidate these trends, our conference brings together scholars interested in the interaction of political, literary, narratological, and cultural analysis of ancient literature to retrace the narrative mechanisms and discourses shaping the (im)balance between ideology, argument, and narration in ancient texts.

This conference will be held as a hybrid with both in-person and online attendees welcome. You can register your attendance here.

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