The poetics and politics of Ovidian intertexts in Statius' Thebaid
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This thesis seeks to offer the first in-depth exploration of the extent and the significance of Ovidian intertexts in Statius’ Thebaid, with particular emphasis on the ways they interact with the readers’ perception of the material and sociocultural context of Flavian Rome. By studying the Thebaid’s post-Ovidian treatment of the landscape (Chapter One), of the heroes (Chapter Two), and of the divine (Chapter Three), I suggest that the poem maintains the poetic and political significance of Ovid’s Theban saga as a critical rewriting of the Aeneid and further develops it into a new reflection on the fissures of the Augustan foundational myths and their applicability to Flavian Rome. This exploration of the contrastive Virgilian-Ovidian intertextuality shaping the Thebaid’s narratives offers new insights not only into Statius’ competitive renegotiation of his relationship with both the Aeneid and the Metamorphoses, but also into the poem’s sophisticated engagement with the most important social, political and religious issues of its time.
Thesis, PhD Doctor of Philosophy
Embargo Date: 2024-04-10
Embargo Reason: Thesis restricted in accordance with University regulations. Print and electronic copy restricted until 10th April 2024
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