David Elmer delivers 26th Lord and Parry Lecture
On Tuesday, March 13th, 2012 David Elmer will offer the 26th Albert Lord and Milman Parry Lecture at the University of Missouri. The title of his talk, to be delivered at 7:00 pm in the Fred Smith Forum at the Reynolds Journalism Institute, is “Poetry’s Politics in Greek Epic and Lyric” [abstract]. The lecture is sponsored by the Center for Studies in Oral Tradition.
In a forthcoming book, I argue that the representation of politics in the Iliad in fact provides a means of reflecting on the ancient Greek epic tradition: the development of this tradition can be thought of as a kind of political process, in which diverse audiences negotiated the shape of the Iliad over time. Such an understanding of politics as a window onto poetics can be applied to other archaic Greek traditions as well. Focusing on the Odyssey and the poetry attributed to Theognis, I will explore the insights that might be gained by approaching texts and traditions beyond the Iliad in terms of a ‘political poetics.’