CFP 14th Groningen Workshop on Hellenistic Poetry: Women and Power in Hellenistic Poetry

The Department of Greek and Latin at the University of Groningen (Netherlands) hereby announces the fourteenth workshop in the series “Workshops on Hellenistic Poetry” to be held in Groningen on 21-23 August 2019. The theme of this workshop will be Women and Power in Hellenistic Poetry.

Hellenistic poetry is full of powerful women, ranging from Ptolemaic queens and princesses to female divinities and epic heroines. An obvious question is therefore: why do we find so many powerful women in Hellenistic poetry, and in what ways do they differ from previous literary representations of women, for example, in Homeric epic, archaic lyric, and Athenian tragedy. 

After defining what kinds of power are at stake (political, religious, divine, magical, erotic, social, intellectual, emotional, moral or even physical), and how they are connected or opposed to the feminine, and by whom, questions arise regarding, e.g., the balance of power between lovers and their objects of desire in erotic relations; the representation of female voices and agency by male authors; or the distinct position in the canon of female epigrammatists such as Nossis and Anyte. What metapoetic dimensions to the representation of powerful women, or power over women can we identify? 

Scholars who wish to contribute a paper are requested to send an e-mail to with the title of their paper and a brief abstract (1 page) by 31 December 2018 and, upon acceptance, a PDF of the complete paper (20 pages) by 1 May 2019, for distribution in advance of the workshop. During the work­shop there will be time for a short introduction (ca. 10 minutes) followed by extensive discussion (ca. 35 minutes). Papers will be published in the series Hellenistica Groningana by Peeters (Leuven). Those who wish to take part in the discussions without contributing a paper or wish to act as a respondent are requested to send an e-mail to  before 1 April 2019.

Unfortunately, our funding situation has changed for the worse compared to previous workshops. Speakers are requested to seek funding for travel and accommodation from their own institution first. We hope to be able to cover part of the travel and accommodation expenses of speakers whose universities are unable to cover their costs in full. Other participants (including respondents) should provide their own funds and budget for a conference fee of €100 (€50 for students), which covers catering (tea, coffee and lunches) and documentation.

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