Graffiti and Their Supports: Informal Texts in Context Organized by John Bodel
The American Society of Greek and Latin Epigraphy invites submissions for a panel at the 2014 annual meeting of the American Philological Association, January 2-5, 2014, in Chicago on the topic "Graffiti and Their Supports: Informal Texts in Context."
Graffiti, even more than other inscriptions, are tied to their physical settings-the objects on which they are written, the places where they are displayed, or the spatial relationship they bear to other writings or drawings on the same surfaces. As the recent collection of essays edited by J. A. Baird and C. Taylor, Ancient Graffiti in Context (2011), well demonstrates, not only wall inscriptions from Pompeii but also graffiti and dipinti of various types in myriad contexts from across the ancient Mediterranean world provide evidence of writing practices and written cultures understudied and poorly documented that have seldom been investigated comparatively and for which even local contextualization has in many cases scarcely begun. The sociology of graffiti production and consumption and the cultural history of informal public writing have been productively explored in research on modern graffiti (e.g. N. Macdonald, The Graffiti Subculture, 2002; J. Austin, Taking the Train, 2001; J. Oliver and T. Neal, Wild Signs, 2010), but few inroads have been made into these areas in study of the ancient world.
The aim of this panel is to advance this line of inquiry by soliciting papers that consider ancient Greek and Latin graffiti and other forms of informal writing in context, broadly conceived to include not only physical but also scriptural or visual context. Studies that approach the subject comparatively or theoretically or that examine graffiti as manifestations of particular writing practices are especially welcome. Topics of investigation might include, but are not limited to: the interaction of text and image; “dialogic” graffiti; self-referential graffiti or those that refer to their supports; literacy and popular culture; temporality (ephemerality or permanence); and read-ership and reception.
Abstracts will be evaluated anonymously by the ASGLE Executive Committee and should not be longer than 500 words (bibliography excluded). Please follow the APA Instructions for Abstract Authors and include the ASGLE Abstract Submission Form with your abstract. The abstract should be sent electronically as a MS Word document and the Abstract Submission Form as a PDF by February 1, 2013 to: John Bodel, Vice-President, ASGLE at john_bodel(at)brown.edu. All Greek should either be transliterated or employ a Unicode font. Authors submitting abstracts must be APA members in good standing.
Poetry on Stone: Verse Inscriptions in the Greco-Roman World Organized by John Bodel, Nora Dimitrova and Paul Iversen
The 2013 ASGLE APA Panel will focus on the musa lapidaria. We frequently think of inscriptions as strictly documentary texts. Metrical inscriptions challenge this assumption and highlight epigraphy's interdisciplinary nature by virtue of their artistic and literary value. They raise the question to what extent we should view them as plausible historical documents as opposed to embellished poems or accolades. In any case, they usually provide direct access to personal feelings, views, and beliefs – what strictly documentary texts often do at best only indirectly. The speakers will include:
1. Simon Oswald, Princeton University "The Peculiar Case of the Earliest Greek Epigrams."
2. Alan Sheppard, Stanford University "Why Inscribe? Isyllos of Epidauros and the Function of Inscribed Hymns."
3. Angela Cinalli, University of Rome, La Sapienza. "Celebratory Epigram for Itinerant Intellectuals, Artists, and Musicians of the Hellenistic Period."
4. Meghan DiLuzio, Baylor University "Paulina's Poetic Defense of Roman Religion."
5. Dennis Trout, University of Missouri "Fecit ad astra viam: Commemorating Wives in the Verse Epitaphs of Late Ancient Rome."
Last update to this page: 10 October 2012