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Io and Trauma in Ovid's Metamorphoses: Rape and Transformation

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dc.contributor.advisor Farmer, Matthew C. Sawyer, Maggie 2019-09-02T22:41:30Z 2019-09-02T22:41:30Z 2019
dc.description.abstract This close reading of the Io episode in Ovid’s Metamorphoses encourages an interdisciplinary dialogue between classical studies and psychology by examining indicators of trauma in the character Io. Unlike previous studies that attempted to extrapolate claims about Ovid’s perceptions of rape, this reading emphasizes the subject’s (Io’s) experience and reveals how her transformations themselves are significant elements of her trauma. This thesis builds on the work of psychologists who have explored how reading ancient myths can augment our understanding of the narratives of modern survivors of sexual trauma. Caregivers, psychologists, and even the survivors themselves can identify with the portrayals of universal human suffering in these myths; in this way, reading ancient texts can help uplift marginalized voices of antiquity and today, even when the texts' authors might not have been marginalized persons themselves. Lastly, this close reading methodology follows in the theoretical footsteps of classicist Leo Curran and encourages classicists to engage more deeply with the text's thematic representations of women's suffering. Both unique themes in Io’s story (e.g. Argus as a subjugator) and programmatic themes that recur throughout the Metamorphoses (e.g. fear, loss of agency, loss of voice, and the punishment of female rape survivors by female goddesses) are explored.
dc.description.sponsorship Haverford College. Department of Classics
dc.language.iso eng
dc.subject.lcsh Ovid, 43 B.C.-17 A.D. or 18 A.D. Metamorphoses
dc.subject.lcsh Rape in literature
dc.title Io and Trauma in Ovid's Metamorphoses: Rape and Transformation
dc.type Thesis
dc.rights.access Open Access

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