Casting Off Shadows is a conference at the University of Cambridge which aims to reassess our understanding of Hellenistic poetry by shifting focus away from third-century Alexandria and its ‘Callimachean’ poetry. We want to illuminate what has been obscured by Callimachus’ enduring shadow and to redirect attention to the plurality of poetic styles and traditions throughout the Hellenistic world, with all their synchronic and diachronic diversity. We are particularly interested in alternative traditions after Callimachus: the post-, non- and anti-Callimachean strands of Hellenistic poetry.
Supported by the Faculty of Classics and the School of Arts and Humanities, the conference has developed out of a panel organised by Max Leventhal and Thomas Nelson at this year’s Classical Association conference in Edinburgh, entitled ‘Hellenistic Poetry Beyond Third Century Alexandria: Alternatives to and Interpretations of Callimachean Poetics’. Motivated by the belief that Callimachus is not wholly representative of three centuries of poetic production, we felt that the topic deserved further exploration in a full-scale international conference.
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