• Classical Antiquity & Memory

    Intergenerational. Interdisciplinary. International Conference

    28-29-30 September 2017 @ Bonn, Germany


    Keynote Speaker: Prof. Dr. Thomas A. Schmitz


    Venue: Department of Romance Philology. Übungsraum 0.013.
    Central University Building
    Regina-Pacis-Weg 3, 53113 Bonn


    Registration starts at 9 a.m. || The event is open to the public.

  • what, why & how

    we do re-member
    Classical Antiquity



    Come then, and let us pass a leisure hour in storytelling,

    and our story shall be the education of our heroes.


    Plato, Republic, Book II


    I enquire now as to the genesis of a philologist and assert the following:

    1. A young man cannot possibly know what Greeks and Romans are.

    2. He does not know whether he is suited for finding out about them.


    Nietzsche, Unzeitgemässe Betrachtungen




    To remember is to deviate from the retrospective quest for any possible beginning, and critically focus on the remediated artefact within its new context. Apart from re-membering classical antiquity though, we aim at the establishment of a hub for students, researchers, artists, and anyone interested in the fascinating world of classical antiquities that keeps haunting our post-modernities in the most stunning ways.


    Let this conference inaugurate a hub of people, networks, projects, ideas, who love to... remember and/or forget our most mythical pasts (sic)!



    Best Wishes!


    Penelope Kolovou & Efstathia Athanasopoulou

  • sub auspiciis

    Our conference is kindly endorsed, and generously supported by prominent institutions
    in the realm of classical antiquity reception studies.
    Let us introduce our partners!

    CCT | Centre for the Classical Tradition

    The Centre for the Classical Tradition is an interdisciplinary research centre of the University of Bonn, with focus on the research of the Greek and Roman Antiquity and its reception. In the centre of the CCT's main interests are all aspects of European Languages and Literatures as well as History and Art concerning the Roman or Greek antiquity.


    Contact: Prof. Dr. Marc Laureys

    Jocasta | Classical Reception Greece

    Jocasta* is a multilateral research project, based at the University of Patras, which aims to promote Classical Reception in Greece as part of an intertwined world. It conceives Reception not as a subdivision of Classics but as a mode of historicised inquiry and constant self-critique intrinsic in Classical Studies. In this respect, it ascribes to the reader the role of the decoder who examines reception of the ancient world from the 8th century BC onwards: from Antiquity to Byzantium, the Middle Ages, the Renaissance, Early and Late Modernity and the future, while ceaselessly moving from the West to the East and from the North to the South and vice versa. It explores Classical Reception through a variety of media ranging from literature to theatre and film to materialised configurations of everyday experience and through a plurality of approaches ranging from Philosophy to Cultural and Social Studies to Performative arts and Science-driven discourses, thus foregrounding interdisciplinary research.


    Contact: Ass. Prof. Dr. Effimia Karakantza

    GKM | Centre for Eastern Mediterranean Studies

    The GKM is a network consisting of all disciplines concerning antiquity studies at the University of Münster. 22 Disciplines - from Archaeology to Cyprus studies - research and teach within this network. The GKM is the backbone of the Excellence Cluster "Religion and Politics" and develops the interdisciplinary religion research together with other Institutions of the University of Münster.


    Contact: Dr. Nikola Moustakis

    Trinational Graduate College of the Universities of
    Bonn - Paris IV Sorbonne - Florence

    European Founding Myths in Literature, Art, and Music

    The Universities of Bonn - Paris IV Sorbonne - Florence have agreed to a common structured doctoral programme. Participating disciplines are those of the Faculty of Philosophy, particularly Linguistic and Literature Departments, and the Department of Art History and Music, as well as disciplines wich focus on topics relevant to the concerns of the Trinational Consortium, like historiography, politics, philosophy, sociology, and so forth. All doctoral dissertations must focus on European founding myths.


    Contact: Prof. Dr. Michael Bernsen

    IGRCT | The Institute of Greece, Rome
    and the Classical Tradition

    The IGRCT promotes research into all aspects of Greco-Roman culture from antiquity to the present day, in the belief that classical culture remains a vital influence in the modern world. It embraces research from many fields, including history of all kinds, archaeology, literary studies, art history and philosophy, and has a particular focus on research that explores the links between ancient and modern.


    Contact: Prof. Dr. Nicoletta Momigliano

    OBTA | Centre for Studies on the Classical Tradition

    OBTA, created by Prof. Jerzy Axer in 1991, was one of the first units in the world to promote the reception of Classical Antiquity as a field of interdisciplinary research at a major university. Currently, headed by Prof. Katarzyna Marciniak, OBTA is a permanent component of the Faculty of “Artes Liberales” at the University of Warsaw. It implements many innovative projects, including the first in Poland ERC Consolidator Grant in the Humanities. We collaborate with representatives of various disciplines worldwide, from North America, through Europe, Africa, Asia, to Australia and New Zealand, combining scholarly reflection with educational and popularizing activities. We consider Antiquity an important cultural experience. The way it is received reflects transformations occurring all around the globe throughout centuries – also in our times. Looking into the reception mirror, comparing the various images and reflections emerging therein, we can better understand the mechanism of these transformations.


    Contact: Prof. Dr. Katarzyna Marciniak


    IMAGINES is an international and cross-disciplinary research network working on modern receptions of Antiquity in the visual and performing arts. A key objective of the project is the understanding of different forms of interpretation, appropriation, revisionism or neglect of the classical inheritance across epochs, nations and cultural expressions and movements. Subject areas under investigation include Theatre, Dance, Cinema, Opera, Sculpture, Architecture, Painting, Comics and Graphic Novels, Design, Photography, Computer Games and multimedia. IMAGINES aims at establishing a fluent dialogues and effective collaboration forms between academia, further education, and the arts and their public. A trademark of IMAGINES is thus the collaboration with non-academic specialists and artists who draw on antiquity as inspiration for their work. The project is interdisciplinary in nature and involves scholars from a wide range of fields from leading universities in Italy, France, Germany, Portugal, Spain and the UK. IMAGINES’ collective initiatives include so international conferences taking place every two years in different countries (2007 Logroño, Spain; 2010 Bristol, UK; 2012 Mainz, Germany; 2014 Faro, Portugal; 2016, Turin, Italy; 2018, Toulouse, France; 2020, Göttingen, Germany) and several academic volumes. Since 2017, Imagines develops a specific publication series for monographs and collective volumes with Bloomsbury (London – New York).


    Contact: Prof. Dr. Martina Treu

  • Runners

    If you think a runner just runs, then... you are right. And we mostly enjoy it!

    Penelope Kolovou

    Penelope Kolovou studied Classical and Modern Greek Philology at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, and the University of Vienna, while she attended postgraduate seminars in Classical and Comparative Literature at the Universities of Bologna, Siena, and Cologne. She specialised in Archaic Lyric Poetry, with a thesis on the performance of Pindar's victory songs. Her doctoral project in progress concerns the critical comparative reading of transmedial rewritings of the Penelopean myth in (post)modernity, and is part of the Trinational Graduate College of the Universities of Bonn - Paris IV Sorbonne - Florence »European Founding Myths in Literature, Art and Music«. Inspired from her studies and work on text linguistics and CDA, her research interests focus on the application of modern literary criticism on classical texts, as well as mythopoetics with respect to the aesthetics and politics of remediated myths in post-classical contexts. She has worked as a translator for English and German in different media, and engaged in cultural management. As a Certified Teacher for Special Education and Modern Greek as L2, she has taught various curricula in secondary, and adults education, at different educational institutions in Greece and Austria. She is currently teaching Greek Language (at all levels) & Literature (Mythopoetics in modern Greek and Cypriot Literature) at the Institute for Byzantine and Modern Greek Studies at the University of Münster, and at the Institute for Linguistics, Media, and Music Studies at the University of Bonn, Germany.


    contact: penelope.kolovou@uni-bonn.de


    Efstathia Athanasopoulou

    Efstathia Athanasopoulou is currently a PhD Student at the Department of Philology, University of Patras. She holds a BA in Classics (2010) from the University of Patras, a BA in English Literature and Culture (2016) from the University of Athens, an MA in Classics (2010-2012) from the University of Patras and an MA in the Reception of the Classical World from UCL (2012-2013/2014). In 2011 she was awarded a full scholarship to participate in Harvard Summer School in Comparative Cultures. She also acts as Ohio-Patras Programme Coordinator. In 2014 she compiled syllabuses and taught Classical Reception on BA and MA levels at the Department of Philology, University of Patras. She conceptualised the creation of a research centre for the study of Classical Reception in Greece, and is co-convenor of Jocasta Classical Reception Greece. Her research interests focus on Ancient Greek Drama, especially tragedy and satyr drama, and theatrical discourse. She has also been researching the reception of Ancient Greek tragedy in Anglophone Literature and Culture (especially postcolonial and world literature). Her current research work is focusing on new theoretical approaches to Classical Reception with an emphasis on posthumanism and distributed cognition.


    contact: athanef@gmail.com


    For their willingness to moderate productive discussions on the topics of our conference, our gratitude also goes to Prof. Michael Bernsen (Department of Comparative Romance Philology, University of Bonn), Prof. Rolf Lessenich (Department of English, American, and Celtic Studies, University of Bonn), PD. Dr. Grazia Folliero-Metz (Department of Romance Philology, University of Siegen), and Dr. Anja Wieber (Independent scholar).


    Credits for academic, administrative, and technical support: Dr. Milan Herold, Alexander Winkler, M.A. (University of Bonn), Marietta Kotsafti, M.A., Gesthimani Seferiadi, M.A. (University of Patras), Richard Cole, M.A. (University of Bristol), and our student volunteers from the Universities of Bonn and Münster, Corinna Wolters, Kalina Dimitrova, Malte Laszlo, Johanna Pilatus.


  • Papers

    Learn more about the topics to be discussed during our
    Classical Antiquity & Memory (19th-21st century)
    international & interdisciplinary conference

    Antigone in Döblin’s November 1918: Reception and its Discontent Thomas A. Schmitz. University of...
    Memories of Satyr Drama in the Work of C. P. Cavafy Andreas P. Antonopoulos. Hellenic Open...
    Ulysses Unchained. Popular Culture and the Metapoetics of Remembering in Oh Brother, where art...
    “Remembering” Classical Antiquity and the construction of “post-colonial” identity in the...
    Ancient Palimpsests as Mnemotechnics: Conall Morrison’s Plays about the Middle East Anastasia...
    Living with Historical Fiction Richard Cole. University of Bristol. UK. richard.cole@bristol.ac...
    Remembrance, Reception and Re-canonisation Among Greek Neopagans; An ethnographic approach to...
    Recalling Ovid 2,000 years later between lights and shadows: memory and rework of a Latin poet in...
    Catullus on stage. Some remarks on Carl Orff’s scenic cantata Catulli Carmina Markus Stachon....
    More Posts
  • Call for Papers

    Classical Antiquity & Memory from the 19th to the 21st Century

    (EXTENDED Deadline for abstract submissions: May 31st 2017 -- EXPIRED!)

    » Quand l'homme a voulu imiter la marche, il a créé la roue, qui ne ressemble pas à une jambe [...] «
    [When man wanted to imitate walking, he invented the wheel, which does not look like a leg ... ]
    Apollinaire: Les mamelles de Tirésias, Préface

    >> Reading Antiquity always already presupposes an act of re-membering and thereby a bringing back to heart (ri-cordare). At the same time, remembering is based on generating difference, i.e. on differences enabling the reappearance of the past as a phantom-like present. When identifying significant historical events and explaining their impact, classical mythology is often engaged in literary and cultural discourses that re-shape and re-interpret narratives that develop our sense of self. Therefore, constructing collective memories and remembering a shared antiquity are often interwoven through mechanisms of encoding, storing, retrieving and forgetting the Greco-Roman past.

    >> Remembering Antiquity implies calling into question past cultural and political amnesia and repression: With the return of the ghost of right-wing politics which deny the relevance of intellectuals, the criteria of choosing one text and not the other become all the more important. This Conference will explore and discuss Dis-/Re-Membering as an urge to consume and/or erase the memory of “classical” texts that we may call into question by re-writing them in the context of various literary, artistic, visual or musical representations.

    Possible subjects for papers

    >>> Re-/Dis-Membrance
    - To what extent does the re-appropriation of classical texts contribute to (de-)constructing memory?
    - What is the rhetoric of constructing memory in modern literature and art?
    - How are dis-continuities exploited in favour of rejecting the concept of a collective cultural memory?

    >>> Re-Presentation
    - To what extent does contemporary literature exploit classical antiquity as propaganda?
    - Does the ancient world progressively elude our memories in the era of postmodern cultural amnesia, or do the spectres of the classical past still haunt us?
    - How do the mechanisms of re-membering the classical past change within the context of national and transnational, sociohistorical and fictional accounts of classical literature?
    - What impact does the digital age have on our relationship with our (remembrance of the) past?

    >>> Re-Canonisation
    - What are the politics of (re-)establishing a Greco-Roman literary canon?
    - How is cultural memory constructed as a form of opposition or as a survival technique that makes use of classical antiquity?
    - How does re-/dis-membering the Greco-Roman past operate in our fragmented and/or catalogued present?
    - What is the connection between personal literary and collective cultural memory, especially in times of crisis when there is a blatant lack of founding myths.
    - How is the classical world (re-)mediated – as a dead corpse or as a living organism - and what aspects make Antiquity relevant for our social, moral, artistic and intellectual world?

  • Sponsors

    apart from the institutions that support our conference,
    our gratitude goes to external sponsors who generously enrich our programme:
    tastefully and amusingly, uniquely in each case!

    Nik the Greek


    Based in Düsseldorf, Germany, Nik the Greek delivers delicious Greek specialties of high quality, wherever you may be! Olive oil, honey, olives, fruity white or red wines, Ouzo, Metaxa, Tsipouro, Feta cheese, and many more delicacies are at your disposal, fresh, quickly delivered, and at best prices! The online-shop offers a great variety of products, and the assortment is constantly renewed. Therefore, you need to often check for new delightful entries! Enjoy your online shopping, and Kali orexi!


    Bönnsche City Tours


    Bönnsche City tours offers you a free walking tour through Bonn (in different languages!). It is a newly founded business by history students in Bonn. They are all locals and would like to take you on a two hour trip through the historical part of the city and later to the Rhine. You will hear stories about the city, its people and about German culture. Each trip ends up in a local Brewery with traditional German food and German beer! Meeting point is the Beethoven statue at the Münsterplatz in Bonn.



    Bloomsbury’s Academic division stands for excellence and originality in scholarship, teaching and learning, and professional practice publishing in the arts, humanities, and social sciences. They serve the communities of students, scholars, educators, instructors, practitioners, and librarians with specialist content, subject expertise, educational materials and cutting edge scholarship across print and digital formats. The division includes Methuen Drama, The Arden Shakespeare, T&T Clark and Fairchild Books, while their portfolio of Bloomsbury Digital Resources for institutional libraries represents the forefront of digital innovation. The division won the Bookseller Industry Award for Academic, Educational & Professional Publisher of the Year 2013 and 2014. They also won the IPG awards for Independent Publisher of the Year and Academic & Professional Publisher of the Year 2013. They are a global independent company with offices based in London, Oxford, New York, Sydney and New Delhi.

    Wissenschaftlicher Verlag Trier


    WVT, founded in 1978, publishes monographs, collective volumes, doctoral dissertations and habilitation books focusing in different academic fields, such as: English, American, German, and Romance Studies, Cultural Studies, Linguistics, Film and Theatre Studies, Classics, Ancient World Studies. VWT also publishes more than 40 established scientific series in the fields mentioned above.

    Haus der Geschichte Bonn


    Experience German history from the end of the Second World War to the present at the Haus der Geschichte in Bonn. The permanent exhibition “Our History. Germany since 1945” (closed through December 2017 due to construction) showcases some 7,000 objects that outline political, economic and cultural developments in German contemporary history. Temporary exhibitions highlight current topics or specific themes (currently on display: “A Love-Need-Hate Relationship. The Germans and their Cars” and “My Club”). Visitor Services and the Education Department offer guided tours, organize workshops and provide materials for self-guided exploration of the exhibitions. The museum offers a broad programme of events including film screenings, lectures, readings, discussions with contemporary witnesses as well as with politicians, scholars and experts from the worlds of culture and the media. The Haus der Geschichte in Bonn is one of the four museums that belong to the Haus der Geschichte der Bundesrepublik Deutschland Foundation. The Foundation’s collection on German contemporary history comprises almost 900,000 items, from postage stamps to panzer tanks.

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