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CALL. 31.12.2015: The Reception of Apuleius’ Cupid and Psyche from 1600 to Today -Leeds (England)


LUGAR/LOCATION/LUOGO: University of Leeds (Leeds, England) ORGANIZADOR/ORGANIZER/ORGANIZZATORE:Regine May, University of Leeds; Stephen Harrison, Corpus Christi College Oxford INFO: -


Apuleius’ tale of Cupid and Psyche has been popular since it was first written in the second century AD as part of his novelMetamorphoses or the Golden Ass. This story of the love between the mortal princess Psyche (or “Soul”) and the god of Love, their secret meetings, separation and final union in eternal love and marriage has fascinated readers as early as Fulgentius and as recent as Emily C.A. Snyder, readers who themselves produced their own responses to and versions of the story. Often treated as a standalone text, Cupid and Psyche has given rise to treatments as diverse as plays, masques, operas, poems, sculptures, paintings and novels, with a huge range of diverse approaches to the text. The early reception of the novel as a whole has been treated in depth by Robert H.F. Carver: The Protean Ass: The Metamorphoses of Apuleius from Antiquity to the Renaissance. Oxford 2007 and Julia Haig Gaisser: The Fortunes of Apuleius and The Golden Ass: A Study in Transmission and Reception. Princeton 2008, but both volumes cover only up to the seventeenth century. During the last 400 years, however, the reception of Cupid and Psyche has blossomed in rich and ever varied responses throughout the Western world.

This conference proposes to bring together international scholars from various disciplines to study the reception of Apuleius’ story of Cupid and Psyche in all its incarnations during the last 400 years, and to encourage interactions between diverse subjects to understand more deeply the historic and continuing impact of Cupid and Psyche on Western fine art and literature.

Topics for papers might include:

· Genres of reception (e.g. drama, poetry, kinds of art)

· Use of C&P in political discourse

· Influences of contemporary religious or philosophical movements on reception of C&P

· Case-studies on specific works of art or literature

· Country- or language specific reception

· C&P as children’s literature or protreptic text

Invited speakers include: Robert Carver, Julia Haig Gaisser, Lucia Pasetti and Christiane Reitz.

The organisers welcome proposals from a wide range of disciplines, including classics, modern languages, art history, history, musicology and others. A selection of papers delivered at the conference will be published in an edited volume.

Conference papers will be 30 minutes, with 15 minutes for discussion.


Regine May, University of Leeds (

Stephen Harrison, Corpus Christi College Oxford (

Please send proposals for papers (300 words) by December 31st 2015 to Regine May (

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