Propertian closure: the elegiac inscription of the liminal male and ideological contestation in Augustan Rome

Fear, Trevor (2005). Propertian closure: the elegiac inscription of the liminal male and ideological contestation in Augustan Rome. In: Ancona, Ronnie and Greene, Ellen eds. Gendered Dynamics in Latin Love Poetry. Arethusa Books. Baltimore, US: The John Hopkins University Press, pp. 13–40.

URL: http://www.press.jhu.edu/books/title_pages/3314.ht...

Abstract

The genre of Roman Elegy represents a narrative told by a youthful member of the Roman elite on the liminal threshold of adulthood. This discourse represents a ludic space in which such a narrator can engage in erotic misadventure represent himself as rejecting and alienated from the nornative responsibilities and attitudes of an adult member of Rome's ruling classes. Elegiac ideology is thus projected as a resistance to maturation and social and civic integration. At the same time the ultimate rejection of this elegiac lifestyle by the Propertian narrator at the end of Book Three points to a questioning of the validity of the elegiac perspective and the assorbtion of youthful disidence into mainstream ideology.

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