Mythical and Mythographical Spectra: Exploring Oppositional Tendencies, 9th Celtic Conference in Cla
Greek and Roman myth is a remarkably flexible intellectual endeavor, one that can be mapped onto a number of what might be called “mythical spectra,” that is, somewhere along a continuum between two opposing poles. These binary opposites—we mean here not binary oppositions of the Lévi-Straussian variety—can be viewed in isolation or multiple instances of them can be viewed simultaneously as forming a latticework of possibilities in which writers and collectors of myth could organize and present their mythical stories. For instance, a poet or mythographer could choose to present either a conventional version of a myth or a rare variant. A writer like Pausanias could choose to present a local variant or look to a Pan-Hellenic poetic source. A commentator on a poem like Vergil’s Aeneid might simply recount a myth or provide an interpretation of it, be it through rationalization or allegory. A Roman poet could choose to present a Greek myth in Greek dress, or he could Romanize it in some way. Thus, each time a mythical story was narrated or alluded to, an author could be pulled in multiple directions, that is, toward or further away from one of these putative poles. This panel seeks to use the framework of “spectra” to explore the ways in which we can view these choices and strategies and to discuss how aware ancient authors were of them while incorporating mythical narratives and allusions into their work.
LUGAR/LOCATION/LUOGO: University College Dublin (Dublin, Ireland)
ORGANIZADOR/ORGANIZER/ORGANIZZATORE: Scott Smith