UWO Classics Graduate Conference 2016:
Voyages and Journeys in Antiquity
Department of Classics
University of Western Ontario
March 18-19, 2016
The communities of the ancient Mediterranean may seem, in comparison with our modern, globalized society, somewhat less reliant on the close cultural and economic ties that we take for granted. Yet, from Homer to Virgil, from Herodotus to Julius Caesar, from the Greek colonization of Southern Italy to the campaigns of Alexander, we are constantly reminded of the vital interchange of ideas and materials that took place between ancient cultures. This conference aims to explore the role of travel in creating and maintaining these connections, whether in the spheres of archaeology, economics, philosophy or literature.
We invite submissions for papers related to the theme of travel in the ancient world. Relevant issues for discussion may include (but are certainly not limited to):
– Geography and space in ancient literature
– Travel in Greek and Roman military narratives
– Nomadism in ancient literature and historiography
– Representations of the oikoumene
– Maritime trade in the Mediterranean
– The role of maps in ancient travel
– Pilgrimage (e.g. in the Hellenistic period, in the Roman empire, etc.)
– Journeys to the underworld (katabases)
– Nostoi in epic, Athenian drama, the ancient novel, etc.
– Metempsychosis and eschatological narratives
– Xenia and diplomatic embassies
This conference is directed towards graduate students of all disciplines whose research touches on any aspect of ancient Greek or Roman culture. Our keynote speaker will be Professor Jonathan Burgess from the Department of Classics at the University of Toronto. Professor Burgess’ work on the Greek epic cycle, performance and orality, and intertextuality in ancient and modern travel literature has been, and continues to be, extremely influential.
Papers should be 15-20 minutes in length. Please send abstracts of no more than 300 words to itinera.western16 AT gmail.com by February 7, 2016.