CFP: Stereotyped Thinking in Classics: Literary Ages and Genres Re-Considered

Seen on the Classicists list:

Philologisches Schubladendenken: Epochen und Gattungen auf dem Prüfstand

Stereotyped Thinking in Classics: Literary Ages and Genres Re-Considered

University of Vienna
Wed., May 30 – Fri., June 1, 2012
Organizers: Farouk F. Grewing (Vienna) and Christine Walde (Mainz)

Call for Papers This conference is supposed to be the first of a series of conferences or workshops (and publications) on the present, 21st century, condition and self-conception of Classical Philology. ‘Stereotyped Thinking in Classics: Literary Ages and Genres Re-Considered’ is primarily meant to critically examine the long-lasting problem(s) of categorizing literature according to ‘ages’, ‘genres’, etc. At first sight, the advantage of such classifications in various categories seems to be evident, for they purport to lend stability and clarity to otherwise chaotic forms. This includes purely temporal classifications by historical and literary ages, systematic ones by ‘genres’ or ‘types of texts’. Often enough, such simplistic concepts result in aesthetic judgments, such as ‘high/low’, ‘good/bad’, etc., which entail the development of canons or lists (e.g., ‘must-reads’ vs. ‘don’t-reads’). The standard companions to, and histories of, Greek and Latin Literature are full of classifications and simplifications that are for the most part handed over from one generation to another. It is the aim of this conference to critically re-assess the pros and cons of such categorizations and to bridge the undeniable gap between traditional philology and modern literary theory. Conference languages: German and English.

Individual talks: 30 minutes plus ca. 15 minutes of discussion each.

Those who wish to contribute a paper should send an e-mail to Farouk F. Grewing (farouk.grewing AT and/or Christine Walde (waldec AT Please include a brief abstract in your mail.

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