For much of the 19th and 20th centuries, research on Roman religion excluded any serious consideration of Latin poetry. Scholarly consensus located ‘real’ Roman religion in practices, rather than in myths or beliefs, and in traditions that supposedly antedated Greek and other non-Italic influences. Consequently, scholars either mined particular texts for nuggets of ‘factual’ information about specific festivals and practices (Ovid’s Fasti in particular) or they simply dismissed it as something extraneous to ‘real’ Roman religion.
In recent decades this simple either-or approach has been challenged from two directions. On the one hand, literary analysis of these texts has shown that we cannot take the works of such complex and sophisticated writers as simple ‘evidence’ for actual practices. On the other hand, scholars who advocate for a more inclusive and complex notion of what constituted Roman religion have argued that the reflections in these texts about human interactions with the divine are as much as part of Roman religion as the rituals that they describe.
The Society of Ancient Mediterranean Religions invites scholars and students of Latin poetry and Roman religion to submit abstracts that address one aspect of the varied interrelations between religion and Augustan poetry.
LUGAR/LOCATION/LUOGO: Sheraton Centre Toronto Hotel, Toronto (Canada)
ORGANIZADOR/ORGANIZER/ORGANIZZATORE: Society of Ancient Mediterranean Religions