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Literary Criticism Ancient & Classical

Walking through Elysium

Vergil's Underworld and the Poetics of Tradition

edited by Bill Gladhill & Micah Y. Myers

Publisher
University of Toronto Press
Initial publish date
Apr 2020
Category
Ancient & Classical, Theology, Ancient & Classical
  • Hardback

    ISBN
    9781487505776
    Publish Date
    Apr 2020
    List Price
    $79.00
  • eBook

    ISBN
    9781487532659
    Publish Date
    Apr 2020
    List Price
    $79.00

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Description

Walking through Elysium stresses the subtle and intricate ways writers across time and space wove Vergil’s underworld in Aeneid 6 into their works. These allusions operate on many levels, from the literary and political to the religious and spiritual. Aeneid 6 reshaped prior philosophical, religious, and poetic traditions of underworld descents, while offering a universalizing account of the spiritual that could accommodate prior as well as emerging religious and philosophical systems. Vergil’s underworld became an archetype, a model flexible enough to be employed across genres, and periods, and among differing cultural and religious contexts.

 

The essays in this volume speak to Vergil’s incorporation of and influence on literary representations of underworlds, souls, afterlives, prophecies, journeys, and spaces, from sacred and profane to wild and civilized, tracing the impact of Vergil’s underworld on authors such as Ovid, Seneca, Statius, Augustine, and Shelley, from Pagan and Christian traditions through Romantic and Spiritualist readings. Walking through Elysium asserts the deep and lasting influence of Vergil’s underworld from the moment of its publication to the present day.

About the authors

Bill Gladhill is an associate professor in the Department of Classics at McGill University.

Bill Gladhill's profile page

Micah Y. Myers is an associate professor of classics at Kenyon College.

Micah Y. Myers' profile page