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Featured Publications and Resources

Hellenic Studies Series 65  | Available Now

Cameron_coverDialoguing in Late Antiquity
Averil Cameron

Christians talked, debated, and wrote dialogues in late antiquity and on throughout Byzantium. Some were philosophical, others more literary, theological, or Platonic; Aristotle also came into the picture as time went on. Sometimes the written works claim to be records of actual public debates, and we know that many such debates did take place and continued to do so. Dialoguing in Late Antiquity takes up a challenge laid down by recent scholars who argue that a wall of silence came down in the fifth century AD, after which Christians did not “dialogue.”

Averil Cameron now returns to questions raised in her book Christianity and the Rhetoric of Empire (1991), drawing on the large repertoire of surviving Christian dialogue texts from late antiquity to make a forceful case for their centrality in Greek literature from the second century and the Second Sophistic onward. At the same time, Dialoguing in Late Antiquity points forward to the long and neglected history of dialogue in Byzantium. Throughout this study, Cameron engages with current literary approaches and is a powerful advocate for the greater integration of Christian texts by literary scholars and historians alike.

Hellenic Studies Series 63  |  Available Now

Poetry_Initiation_cover Poetry as Initiation: The Center for Hellenic Studies Symposium on the Derveni Papyrus
Ioanna Papadopoulou and Leonard Muellner, eds.

The Derveni Papyrus is the oldest known European “book.” It was meant to accompany the cremated body in Derveni Tomb A but, by a stroke of luck, did not burn completely. Considered the most important discovery for Greek philology in the twentieth century, the papyrus was found accidentally in 1962 during a public works project in an uninhabited place about 10 km from Thessaloniki, and it is now preserved in the Archaeological Museum of Thessaloniki.

The papers in Poetry as Initiation discuss a number of open questions: Who was the author of the papyrus? What is the date of the text? What is the significance of burying a book with a corpse? What was the context of the peculiar chthonic ritual described in the text? Who were its performers? What is the relationship of the author and the ritual to the so-called Orphic texts?

2014 CHS Research Symposium  |  April 25-26

Join us on Friday, April 25 and Saturday, April 26 for a live webcast of the Center for Hellenic Studies Research Symposium. The stream will be available at rtsp://stream.chs.harvard.edu/HouseA, viewable with VLC Media Player or Quicktime. For more information, including abstracts, see the announcement on the CHS Research Bulletin.

2014 Information Fluency in Classics Workshop | Apply now!

Each year CHS offers a workshop to introduce undergraduates to important sources of information for the study of classics and develop their ability to access, evaluate, and manage resources in a variety of formats. Workshop participants will also explore the broader landscape of scholarly communication and how it is currently evolving. Over the course of the workshop, students planning to write a senior thesis in the fall or considering library science as a career option will learn skills essential for any researcher or librarian. Deadline: April 30th. Apply now!

Homer Multitext

HMT Editors Casey Dué and Mary Ebbott are working to advance our understanding of oral poetics and multiformity in the Homeric tradition. In a recent post, Dué notes: "One of the central research questions that drives the Homer Multitext is this: 'How do you make a critical edition of an oral tradition, like that of the Homeric Iliad and Odyssey, that spanned a thousand years or more? What is the best way to represent the textual history of songs that were created in and for performance, but survive only in textual forms from later eras?'" Dué and Ebbott are now also "live blogging" about their research on oral poetics and Iliad Scroll 2. Don't miss their latest post!

VAIliad2-detail

Image: Detail from the Venetus A, folio 33, verso. Iliad 2.484-487, (trans. Casey Dué)

[484] ἔσπετε νῦν μοι Μοῦσαι Ὀλύμπια δώματ᾽ ἔχουσαι·
[485] ὑμεῖς γὰρ θεαί ἐστε πάρεστέ τε ἴστε τε πάντα·
[486] ἡμεῖς δὲ κλέος οἶον ἀκούομεν οὐδέ τι ἴδμεν·
[487] οἵ τινες ἡγεμόνες Δαναῶν καὶ κοίρανοι ἦσαν·

[484] Tell me now, Muses who have homes on Olympus,
[485] for you are goddesses and are present for all and know all things,
[486] whereas we only hear the fame [kleos] and do not know anything,
[487] who were the leaders of the Danaans and their commanders?