SURF

Erin Lam

The Metapoetics of the Construction of Space and Location in Horaces Odes

The Roman poet Horace, an enormous influence on Western thought and poetry, himself stands within a long tradition of Greek and Latin lyric. He innovates on the foundations his forebears have built, creating new and surprising poems. Many of Horaces Odes reveal a marked attention to the construction of setting. I categorize these settings into actual place, or a geographical location that could potentially exist, and poetic space, more imaginary or surreal constructions. These spaces are often linked to a religious ritual and involve a skillful manipulation of time and space on the part of the poet. My project aims to elucidate the characteristics and purposes of these spaces, the relationship of the poet and these spaces to religion, and ultimately how these poems change or define the genre of Latin lyric poetry.

Message to Sponsor

SURF has given me the amazing opportunity to collaborate with interesting and brilliant scholars in diverse fields, working on projects that I could never have conceived of. Im grateful to the advisers, who have already put in so much time into helping us succeed. The financial support will enable me to travel to Rome, to immerse myself in the history and culture of both the modern Italians and Ancient Romans, as well as to see the places and spaces that Horace illustrates so beautifully in his poetry.
  • Major: Molecular Environmental Biology, Classical Languages
  • Mentor: Kathleen McCarthy, Classics