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CALL: 31.10.2017: Rejecting the Classics - London (England)




LUGAR/LOCATION/LUOGO: University College London (London, England)




This is a call for proposals for a half-day interdisciplinary workshop to be held on the afternoon of 21st February 2018 at UCL on the topic of ‘Rejecting the Classics’, generously hosted by UCL’s Department of Greek and Latin and Institute of Advanced Studies. Many of the most exciting writers and thinkers of modernity have defined their projects through a rejection of the legacy of ancient Greece and Rome, whether Nietzsche and Plato, Brecht and tragedy, or Fanon and the exclusionary humanism he glimpsed on the ‘Graeco-Latin pedestal’ of western culture. This workshop aims to engage critically with the narrative of rejection that such receptions mobilise, and to explore its role in the definition of classical reception as well as its implications for the place of classical reception within the broader discipline of classics. It hopes to consider the complex position that the study of such antagonistic responses to the classical legacy holds in a discipline committed to imparting the value and benefit of the classical past, and to reflect on the challenges of constructively integrating negative evaluations of literature and culture in the humanities more generally. To this end, although the workshop will be primarily focused on exploring the dynamics of this debate within classics, papers are particularly welcome from humanities disciplines beyond classics in order to facilitate discussion across disciplinary boundaries.

Proposals are sought for short, 5-10 minute presentations that focus on the value of the idea of ‘Rejecting the Classics’ to understanding the engagement with antiquity displayed by a particular author, text or artwork. Each presentation will have a 30-minute time slot so that the maximum amount of time can be devoted to discussion. Proposals should take the form of an abstract of at most 150 words.

Deadline for submission is 31st October 2017, and all abstracts and queries should be submitted to Adam Lecznar at Sources of funding are currently being explored for the workshop and there may be some funding available to contribute towards the travel expenses of junior scholars (PhD students and those within 5 years of submission): if you would like to be considered for this funding then please indicate so in your submission email. Proposals for presentations that are accepted but which cannot be given for financial reasons will still be considered in future publication plans, so do please still get in touch or submit a proposal even if you will not be in London next February.

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