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CALL. 20.03.2020: [PANEL 6] "Cicero Narrator". Narrative technique and rhetorical strateg





ORGANIZADOR/ORGANIZER/ORGANIZZATORE: Francesco Ginelli (PRIN member Università di Verona); Tommaso Ricchieri (Università di Padova)

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In classical rhetoric, the Latin word narratio refers to the part of a speech where the orator provides an account of what has caused the trial, explains the nature of the debate, and gives essential background information. Following the exordium and preceding the argumentatio and peroratio as the second of the four partes orationis, narratio aims to persuade the audience to view a case, judge events, and look at the acts of the characters from a specific (and oriented) point of view. The importance of this part of the oratio clearly emerges in Cicero’s rhetorical manuals, especially in Partitiones Oratoriae (part. 31) and in De oratore (de orat. 2.79-83), where we can read surveys on structures, functions, and style of the narratio that, according to Cicero, must be brevis, dilucida, verisimilis. It follows that Cicero as orator can be seen as the chief Roman author to study nature, composition, and themes of the narratio.

This panel aims, therefore, to analyse Cicero’s narrative technique in its formal and technical aspects (use and purpose of the narratio, its linguistic and stylistic markers, and intersection with the other partes orationis) as well as its contents (themes, characters, places, social and political context, cultural background shared by the orator and his audience).

Moreover, the panel will further stimulate debate on the narrative techniques of Cicero’s speeches from multiple perspectives, in order to promote a fruitful dialogue between different approaches concerning the same author.

In particular, we invite papers dealing with, but not exclusively, the following topics found in Cicero’s narratives:

1. Forms of narration in Ciceronian oratory, e.g. long vs. short narrations, multiple narrations within the same speech, etc.

2. Ciceronian narration in the context of ancient rhetoric: common features, topoi, narrative patterns.

3. The use of narration in invectives and eulogies.

4. Ciceronian characters and the use of prosopopeia.

5. Narrating politics in Cicero’s speeches.

6. History and myth; the use of exempla and anecdotes.

7. Scandal, conspiracy, and rumor.

8. Ethnicity, gender, and prejudice.

The 13th Celtic Conference in Classics will take place in Lyon (France), from 15‒18 July, 2020. For this panel we are asking for papers of approximately 35 minutes in length, with 10‒15 minutes for questions and discussion. The Conference languages are English and French.

Please submit titles and abstracts (as .pdf attachments) of no more than 500 words, together with a short cv, to by March 20th 2020. Applicants will be notified of the evaluation results by March 31st 2020. For further information and questions, please contact or either of the panel organizers.

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