Matters of reception in pastoral amoebaean contests
Rabon, Brendan Ernest
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This thesis is chiefly concerned with a particular mode, or subgenre, of ancient pastoral poetry: the amoebaean contest. Throughout this thesis, I explore the inherent tensions between competing herdsmen (young vs. old, student vs. teacher, or just poets of opposing aesthetics), and how judgments of victory an defeat affect the reading process. Through close readings of three contests - Theocritus' Idyll 5, Vergil's Eclogue 7, and Calpurnius' Eclogue 6 - I will explore how the songs of shepherds (and the traditions they represent) are transmitted or received within the imagined literary landscape of the locus amoenus.