LAT 383 • Letters
2:00 PM-5:00 PM
This seminar will introduce graduate students to the complicated, fascinating world of Latin Letter-writing. It will be organized thematically, with sessions devoted to such topics as: genre questions; the uses and abuses of dialogism; the materiality of the letter and letter exchange; epistolary friendship; consolation and competition; public and private. Primary readings will cover a chronological range that reaches back to Hellenistic Egypt and forward to the sixth century CE, though some emphasis will be given to the collections of Cicero, Seneca, and Pliny. This wider chronological range will allow us to spend some time thinking about how the form and function of the letter changes over time, particularly as letter exchange came to be an acceptable substitute for face to face conversation. The final grade will be based on class participation, including in-class presentations, and a final paper.
Required Textbooks: Course Packet