Call for Papers
Discourses of Disruption: The Power of Impoverished Aesthetics
This panel seeks papers exploring experiences in Latin literature that have typically been excluded from aesthetic consideration: representations and perceptions of smallness, meanness, ugliness, the uncanny, and more. We aim to explore these “impoverished aesthetics” in ancient literature, particularly in their potential for disrupting discourses of power. When and how is the marginal, the mean, or the small elevated to a position of power in the literary discourse? When and how is it used to craft discourse about power? When and how is it used to empower or disempower audiences and readers, e.g. by reinforcing or disrupting aesthetic expectations? How do smallness and meanness disrupt or challenge the power of dominant aesthetics and rhetorical canonization in Latin literature?
We welcome abstracts on any non-canonical or underrecognized aspect of Latin aesthetics. Possible topics include:
The aesthetics of poverty, want, and need
Surprise, irritation, and/or the uncanny
Disrupted and disruptive landscapes, such as sites of war, famine, or plague
Deformity in aesthetic and/or physical terms, such as ugly texts or ugly bodies
Rhetorical techniques of surprise and/or disruption
Ancient literary critical responses to ugliness and obscenity
Please submit an abstract of no more than 300 words, and/or any inquiries, to Lorenza Bennardo (firstname.lastname@example.org) by Monday, August 16 at midnight (EDT). Selected abstracts will be included in the organizers’ panel proposal and subject to acceptance by the Classical Association (classicalassociation.org).