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- ItemA Contemporary Cartoon Epic: Classical Reception and Homeric Epic in Bone by Jeff Smith(2017) Weissman, Hannah; Sigelman, Asya C.; Stevens, BenThis thesis explores the connection between ancient epic and contemporary comics using Bone by Jeff Smith as a case study. The theoretical framework of the paper draws from reception studies to frame comparisons between Bone and ancient epic. The paper explores the genre of epic, using ancient and contemporary scholars to produce a working definition of the genre. It creates a distinction between whether works fall into the epic genre and whether works are themselves epics. Then, it compares the formal elements of Homeric epic with comics and investigates key similarities between the two media. There are five main categories that define whether a work is an epic: content (addressed in the discussion of genre), performativity, perspective, use of character types, and seriality. Finally, it applies the connections from the previous chapters to two comic adaptations of the Homeric epics, Age of Bronze by Eric Shanower and The Odyssey by Gareth Hinds. This study lays a foundation for looking at comics as epic, and thus opens up the idea of epic for a broader range of reception studies.
- ItemActual infinity and pure calculation : the legacy of Archimedes through the Palimpsest of Codex C(2011) Bergbower, Emily Anne SmithThe Archimedes Palimpsest, otherwise known as Codex C, contains two new treatises of the great mathematician and mechanical engineer, Archimedes of Syracuse. The first treatise, The Method of Mechanical Theorems, was read in part by J.L. Heiburg in 1906, but its critically important proposition 14 was first read in the last decade using modern imaging techniques. Proposition 14 indicates that Archimedes knew certain principles of infinite summation, calculated with actual infinity, and foresaw modern Set Theory. These are critical concepts to the development of calculus and advanced mathematics, and they also undermine the nature of what historians of science have long believed of ancient Greek mathematics. The second treatise found in the palimpsest is the Stomachion in which Archimedes relies on a 14 piece tangram puzzle to perform pure calculations and use combinatorics. The content of these two treatises create a new and more developed role for Archimedes within the history of science as they show him to be both the father of calculus and the father of combinatorics. This paper assesses the content of these treatises, their importance within the history of science, and how they alter our perception of Archimedes.
- ItemAeneas in the New World: Reshaping the Interpretive Motif in Barlow's Columbiad(2010) Carroll, Thomas Eliot; Mulligan, BretBarlow's Columbiad evokes Virgil's Aeneid by using the motifs of revelation and interpretation to explore the role of the past in informing the present. Virgil creates an opposition between Aeneas, who receives prophecies and signs but is prevented from interpreting them by his shock and fear, and his father Anchises, who interprets the prophecies and guides the Trojans. Aeneas learns to use his father's interpretive ritual but must utilize this technique to craft forward-looking interpretations and lead his people into the unknown, in order to fulfill his destiny. This combination of traditional ritual with a progressive outlook reflects symbolically the new political circumstances of Virgil's Rome. In the Columbiad, Columbus views scenes from early American history, and presents Hesper with the problems and criticisms he sees in the nation's development, relying on Hesper to explain them. Through their intermittent dialogue, the two advocate cyclical and linear models of historical development, respectively. Hesper's interpretation of mankind's progressive improvement prevails, reflecting Barlow's vision of post-revolutionary America as distinct from and improving upon its Old World predecessors. The two epics' common motif reveals the complexity of Columbus' character and reinforces Barlow's democratic message.
- Item“An age of genealogy”: The Auctoritas of Dares Phrygius and Dictys Cretensis and Its Influence on Narratives of Trojan Ethnogenesis in Late Medieval Europe(2014-09-16) Richard, Katharine R.In the twelfth through fourteenth centuries, the Trojan War became an increasingly popular time for many elite European families to locate their founding ancestors; Trojan origins provided the justification for the rule of these influential families. This sudden surge in Trojan ethnogenesis required medieval authors to use certain, authoritative primary sources: these sources were the Ephemeris Belli Troiani of Dictys Cretensis and the De Excidio Troiae Historia of Dares Phrygius, supposed eyewitness accounts to the events of the Trojan War. In this paper I suggest that the writers of the Ephemeris and the De Excidio called upon ancient forms of historical writing as well as a deliberately sparse style in order to present their works as entirely authentic. I explore the ways in which medieval writers such as Geoffrey of Monmouth and the anonymous Gawain poet employed these primary sources to construct and criticize, respectively, the use of Trojan ethnogenesis to promote the idea of translatio imperii. A thesis submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Bachelor of Arts in the Department of Latin at Bryn Mawr College May
- ItemAliquid Decoctius : culinary metaphors in Persius' Saturae(2011) Bannard, Mary FrancesAlthough Persius tackles a variety of themes in his six satires – the contemporary literary climate, religion, overindulgence, self-knowledge, and self-sufficiency – a culinary thread runs through all of them and serves to anchor the corpus as a whole. For Persius, the connections between food, the body, and the mind are inseparable, and thus throughout his satires the language of food and cooking often points directly to his purpose in that particular poem. By looking closely at repeated culinary metaphors in several different satires, we will come to see how Persius exploits the language of food, cooking, and the body both to convey the objective of particular satires and also to call attention to the complex and often contradictory nature of the genre in which he is writing. Regardless of the topic at hand, cooking in Persius is hardly a benign domestic activity; rather, the language of cooking and digestion that he uses often reflects violence and is consistently taken to extremes. The effects of food and cooking on the body are similarly taken to extremes and are often grotesque. Persius sees bodily excess everywhere: the world around him is fat, bloated, and swollen. Therefore, instead of using these culinary references haphazardly, as Emily Gowers suggests in The Loaded Table, I will argue that Persius places them carefully throughout his collection, using them to highlight the contradictions ever-present not only in his poetry, but also in the society around him.
- ItemAmazons in the Amphora: Traces of the Defeated Other in Wonder Woman Comics(2010) Pollack, Lara; Roberts, Deborah H.; Mulligan, BretReferences to the Amazons, a mythical race of warrior women, are widespread in ancient literature. They were generally represented as a defeated Other in their relations with the Greeks, reaffirming the patriarchal nature of Greek society. Amazons have also been received into modern literature, with the most prominent example being Wonder Woman, a comic book character created by William Marston in the early 1940s. Wonder Woman has generally been hailed as a feminist icon. The widespread representation of bondage and other sadomasochistic elements throughout the Wonder Woman comics, however, argue that she and other female characters are still represented as a defeated Other, retaining traces of the misogyny widespread in ancient accounts of Amazons.
- ItemAn American paradox : the legacy of classical Roman republicanism, libertas, and slavery in American ideology(2016) Andrew, Sarah T.In an attempt to uncover how the Founders of America conceptualized liberty and society in the creation of their own Republic, I will explore the meaning of liberty in the Roman Republic and its relationship to the functioning of the government in a slave holding society. This work will build off the theories of several Republican Scholars who trace classical republicanism to its origination in the Roman Republic.1 These scholars define liberty in the negative sense, as non-domination, and identify the promotion and protection of that liberty as the goal of Republicanism. They further understand that equal rights, participation, and a system of checks and balances in the government can best achieve the goal of liberty.
- ItemAnacreon’s love poetry: redirecting the ball of Eros(2011) Carter, Rachel LeighCritical opinion about Anacreon’s poetry has changed since Smyth penned his damning evaluation in 1900. Anacreon, indeed, is allowed to be one of the more clever poets of archaic Greece. Still, if we except Bowra’s deep appreciation of his poems, it is probable that one will encounter more recent critics finding something lacking: “there is in his [Anacreon’s] love poetry virtually none of the passion and earnestness that we find in Sappho or Catullus.” However, I agree with Bowra that Anacreon’s particular poetics are something innovative for Greek poetry, “both lyrical and witty, both passionate and fanciful.” Anacreon’s detractors find fault with his poetry in comparison to other poetry, particularly that of his immediate predecessor Sappho. I hope to show in this paper that a comparison of the erotic verse of Anacreon and Sappho can yield a different outcome than a reading of Sappho as superior and Anacreon as inferior. Instead, I hope to examine the genius that lies in both poets and show how the two poets approach love poetry in a fundamentally different way. I will make this comparison using two main texts: Anacreon 358 and Sappho 31. In each poem, the narrator encounters their beloved bestowing favors on someone other than the narrator. Although the poetic scenarios are similar, each author treats them differently and in doing so reveals the way in which poetry processes and mediates erotic disappointment. By bringing in additional fragments as needed, I will show that Sappho’s erotic verse creates spaces and extends time for internal, personal reflection, and within her poems examines the emotions and reactions involved in love.
- ItemAn angelic digression : the significance of 1.16-18 in the Cur Deus Homo(2012) Kuper, Charles NestorThe aim of this thesis is to give a new reading of sections 1.16-18 of Anselm of Canterbury’s Cur Deus Homo (published in 1098) that argues against the almost unanimous opinion of previous interpreters that this passage was a quaint medieval digression. This thesis, which is divided into two sections, argues in Section 1 that there is good evidence within the text of the Cur Deus Homo that Anselm saw his arguments given in 1.16-18 as proving an essential premise for the major argument of the dialogue, that is, that it must be proved that God must save humankind before it can be proved how God saved humankind. In Section 2, this thesis, moving beyond the text of the Cur Deus Homo, analyzes Anselm’s utilization of syllogistic logic in his dialogue De Grammtico and investigates the mathematical sources of inspiration for Anselm’s concept of the perfectus numerus in 1.16-18. This thesis concludes that Anselm’s argument in 1.16-18 is modeled upon the mathematical concept of the perfectus numerus, which is found in Boethius’ De Institutione Arithmetica among other places, in order to provide the work’s incredulous target audience with a theological argument that is not the subject of belief but a sort of mathematical certainty.
- ItemThe anthropophagic epic : cannibalism, poetics, and the poet(s) of Statius' Thebaid(2017) Dolson, KatharineIf, as the popular saying goes, we are what we eat, then what nature of beast is the Thebaid, an epic that participates in a consumption most extreme – cannibalism? This perverse and perverted consumption is not limited to the single, notorious act of Tydeus, but in fact has a far larger and more ubiquitous role in the poem, defining both its action and composition. The extreme consumption within the epic is difficult to face; indeed despite its frequent mentions throughout the Thebaid, we the audience only get a fleeting glimpse of Tydeus’ actual cannibalism, through the eyes of Minerva even as they look away and seek to escape the gruesome spectacle: ecce illum effracti perfusum tabe cerebri 760 aspicit et uiuo scelerantem sanguine fauces. (8.760-761) Behold! She sees him drenched in gore from the cracked skull and debasing his throat with living blood. Just as the goddess is repulsed and instinctively turns aside, too late to avoid fully the sight of Tydeus’ anthropophagic appetite, so too have many scholars overlooked the implications of this epic’s abject consumption.
- ItemArachne was kind of a badass : weaving a web of women's experience(2016) Cantler, Eve
- ItemAn archaic agrarian cult centre in the Roman Forum(2015-07-28) Barton, TabathaIn this paper, I discuss the emerging building program in the Roman forum during the 6th century BCE. This program came with the rise of urbanization and was part of a greater religious culture in archaic Latium. In particular I argue that the monuments in this program represent an archaic cult centre focused on the propitiation of agrarian gods, emphasizing the importance of agriculture to the people of archaic Rome. To make that argument, I present the archaeological and literary evidence followed by a discussion. I will begin with an overview of the material and dating from the Roman forum and then compare this evidence to material from other Latial sites, Lavinium and Satricum. I next present the literary and archaeological evidence for each monument. Then I discuss the monuments as a whole and their role in the topography of festivals. Lastly, I discuss the gods associated with these monuments. I conclude by connecting this cult centre to the rising urbanization and economy of archaic Rome, emphasizing the importance of agriculture.
- ItemAtalanta as a repoussoir for erotic and competitive ephebic excellence(2019) Fritzell, StellaIn this paper I suggest that Atlanta rather functions as a repoussoir for the inherent homoeroticism of the male athletic spaces and practices in which the various episodes of her myth take place. Her unexpected presence in masculine settings draws upon the explicit sexual inflections found in narratives of erotic abduction and female rites-of-passage thereby highlighting these same elements implicit in the activities of young men. Atalanta’s feminine and competitive figure demonstrates not only the athletic component of ephebic excellence, but also the erotic.
- ItemThe battlefield of history: Megara, Athens, and the mythic past from 600 BC to 250 BC(2014) Horn, Shannon L.In ancient Greece, history and myth were intertwined. The mythic past was a realm where heroes walked alongside gods to found the cities of the classical period. Diplomatic relations, military endeavors, and local identity were justified and created using the mythic past. Myth was not a static body of stories, however. Mythology, and the mythic past, was malleable. Local identity was created through an active and constant process of selection that rewrote the content of the mythic past to create the history best suited to the needs of the present. The cities of Athens and Megara were two such cities that engaged in this process of identity formation through myth. The mythic discourse between the cities shows, however, that the alteration of myth was also an act of aggression that would be met with retaliation and resistance. Myth was used to create local identities, and it was in a city’s best interest to undermine the identity of its enemies. Through iconographic remains and fragmentary textual evidence, the mythic discourse of Athens and Megara can be reassembled from its disparate parts. The most prominent and frequently contested myths were those most important to the political process of identity formation and attack. This thesis examines the evolution from 600 BC to 250 BC of the myths of Pandion and Nisus, Theseus and Skeiron, Athena Skiras, and Theseus and Ariadne to show that the mythic past in Greece was a political tool used to express hegemony over and attack the foundation of other cities. Control over the mythic past demonstrated a city’s political control over a region. Economic, political, and military action was accompanied by an ideological war waged on the battlefield of the mythic past.
- ItemBecoming a resisting reader : enacting and enabling a feminist reading of women in Livy(2011) Slavitt, Hannah ChloeIn Rescuing Creusa: New Methodological Approaches to Women in Antiquity both Marilyn Skinner and Phyllis Culham struggle with what it means to be a feminist scholar of classical sources. The problems faced by a feminist scholar of the classics are daunting and manifold. The classical texts we read are misogynistic, the societies we study are patriarchal and the scholarly framework and critical methodologies that are most widely accepted either cannot or choose not to see women and female characters in their own right. Both women, while giving credit where it’s due, struggle with the structure and sustainability of the broad survey work feminist scholars have tried to do. The traditional methods cannot work for the study of women in ancient society and classical literature because, while trying to adhere to the innately empiricist bias in mainstream scholarship, feminist scholars are actually forced to rely more on speculation. If we can get scholarship to value literature as a truly valid, if not comprehensive, source then feminist textual readings, close literary analysis in the most traditional sense, can have a chance of reinvigorating feminist scholarship. While literature cannot present us with the factual truth that historians usually crave, it can provide invaluable insight. We must then become Judith Fetterly’s resisting reader; we must appreciate the text, approach it with respect and then, only then, should we provide a critical and informed evaluation of the text as it relates to women and feminism.
- ItemBene dicendi scientia: “The power of speech/To stir men’s blood”? Quintilian’s Institutio Oratoria and Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar(2007) Baratz, Katharine; Mulligan, Bret
- ItemBeyond Augustus as Aeneas: Parallels between Ascanius and Octavian in Vergil's Aeneid(2022) Fitzpatrick, Mallory MaeThis thesis examines surprising parallels between the figure of Vergil’s Ascanius and the historical figure of Octavian, later known as Augustus Caesar, which have been overlooked. A close examination of the text reveals a striking number of similarities between these two figures, especially in the thematic areas of inheritance, military achievement, survival and restoration, and divine favor. These themes, widely relevant to Vergil’s Aeneid as a whole, also reflect contemporary anxiety about the socio-political climate of Rome in which Octavian rose to power and indeed contemporary concerns about Octavian as Rome’s new leader. The ambiguity of Ascanius, who can be both a positive and negative character in the epic, was also appropriate for Octavian, whose rise to power was at once encouraging and alarming for many Romans. Vergil’s text, shaped by decades of traumatic civil war, draws attention to these similarities between Ascanius and Octavian and their subsequent connotations and participates in contemporary discourse about Octavian who, like Ascanius, inspired both hope and fear in his people as he took control of Rome.
- ItemBlowing in the wind : the effect of translation on Ecclesiastes’ breath motif(2015-07-28) Kohrman-Glaser, ElianaThis thesis discusses the translation of the Septuagint Ecclesiastes as an example of the most literal style of translation in the Septuagint. By examining the breath motif in the Hebrew text of Ecclesiastes and evaluating how the Greek translation preserves or fails to preserve its components, it is possible to analyses the merits of this translation style in maintaining a motif created by repeated words and images. I find that this literal translation style is the most effective way to translate such a text, and should not be dismissed simply because it reads awkwardly.
- ItemBoy or god : the vacillating role of the divinity of Antinous(2015-07-28) Tenpenny, Rachel ElizabethAntinous is a figure of Roman history known to all. His name is practically infamous. The young boy and beloved of Hadrian became a god upon his death, and that's where his life really took off. The most fascinating mystery about Antinous is his vacillating role throughout history including the various and manifold critical reception of him. Considering that he was a young boy who did not live past twenty years of age at the most, the sheer immovable permanence of his image is astounding. From the oracular Egyptian god to the Victorian homosexual icon to the modern god of homosexuality, Antinous has concretely proven his h'1d immortality. In a way, Antinous has become a sort of "blank slate" god, who has/syncretisms and various incarnations thrust upon his identity. All these variations make it hard to discover who the "true" Antinous really is, if there even is one. Ultimately, throughout history Antinous was transformed into the god or icon that a particular people needed at a particular time.