Ovid Metamorphoses Chats
Greek and Roman Mythology Chat Transcripts
from online discussions of the ancient Greek and Roman classics at Ancientsites.com (which folded in 2000)


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Ovid Metamorphoses Chat 1 on January 20, 1999

20:57 MORGANA FLAVIUS: Hello, Torrey! 
20:58 TORREY PHILEMON: Hi Morgana. 
20:58 Aurora Inca enters...
20:59 TORREY PHILEMON: Welcome Aurora! 
20:59AURORA INCA: Hello, everyone! 
21:00 TORREY PHILEMON: Everyone will probably be a small group...but Phya and Lusinda should at least also be joining us. 
21:01 MORGANA FLAVIUS: It is slow here too... - Hello Aurora! - I guess at this time everybody is loggin into AS. 
21:01 TORREY PHILEMON: 160 people are online...slowdown usually occurs when we reach 150... 
21:02 MORGANA FLAVIUS: Well, here in the chat it is not too slow for me... 
21:03 TORREY PHILEMON: Since two of you are here, let me explain my ideas for tonight's chat. Since there is so much to discuss, I suggest a structure. That we take turns, and each person have about 10-15 minutes to raise a question or a topic and get feedback. What do you think? 
21:04AURORA INCA: Well, I don't really have any questions, but you KNOW I'll give feedback! 
21:06 TORREY PHILEMON: I've written down topics and reflections everyone's brought up and you did mention some interests Aurora - the flood, astronomy, Zeus as rapist and blame the victim... 
21:06 TORREY PHILEMON: Since I've taken up a lot of space with my thoughts already, I suggest that Aurora or Morgana, one of you start with a topic of interest to you... 
21:07AURORA INCA: Oh, that's right, I did post some of my rambling thoughts..... 
21:07 Lusinda Lupus enters...
21:07 Morgana Flavius enters...
21:08 TORREY PHILEMON: Welcome, Lusinda. I was just suggestion that we each take turns presenting a topic or theme of interest to us.... 
21:08 Phya Artistides enters...
21:08 MORGANA FLAVIUS: Oops! Sorry, Netscape crash... 
21:08 MORGANA FLAVIUS: Welcome Lusinda! 
21:08 PHYA ARTISTIDES: Hi everyone! 
21:08 LUSINDA LUPUS: Hello everyone, I've been checking on what I missed. It's so slow! 
21:09 MORGANA FLAVIUS: Hello, Phya! 
21:09 MORGANA FLAVIUS: That's ok for me, Torrey. 
21:09 TORREY PHILEMON: Also, Aurora, as an archaeologist, perhaps you have a perspective on studying a culture, looking at a culture as an anthropologist might....like what might we learn about the Roman culture looking at the myths, as we might look at the artifacts... (hello Phya. I'm suggesting we take turns presenting topics) 
21:09 PHYA ARTISTIDES: *same as lusinda...it took me ligtyears to log on* 
21:10 MORGANA FLAVIUS: Oh, I just finished a draft for a page on Europa and Jove. I posted the link at the Ovid's Spa, in MythQuest. 
21:10 LUSINDA LUPUS: Here goes:  I've been struggling with the question of the Hellenes and their patriarchal pantheon on top of which is Zeus, and what happens to the mother relegions when all the local goddessed get "raped" or overwhelmed by Zeus. 
21:10 TORREY PHILEMON: It's exciting to finally be together with you all Ovid devotees! (Great, Morgana!!) 
21:11 TORREY PHILEMON: Ok Lusinda, let's start with that.... 
21:11 TORREY PHILEMON: (Obviously I'm not one for small talk!!) 
21:11 MORGANA FLAVIUS: Aurora, I would love to hear you about Torrey's suggestion. That's one of my biggest interest when I read a classic. 
21:12AURORA INCA: Actually, I think reading a version of the myths retold by Ovid tells us more about Ovid than Rome. 
21:12 MORGANA FLAVIUS: Oh, ok, Lusinda. That's an interesting theme too! 
21:13 TORREY PHILEMON: How about if we start with what Lusinda just brought up and then go onto what Aurora and Morgana just said in regard to learning about Rome and Ovid..... Lusinda, say more... 
21:13 MORGANA FLAVIUS: *listening to Lusinda* 
21:13 PHYA ARTISTIDES: The patriarchy is something my prof has been talking about in class quite a bit. That, because it is men writing myths, women tend to get misrepresented. 
21:14 MORGANA FLAVIUS: (side comment: I just grammed Flavius Horatius and he said he might come if he can have a moment with no interruptions) 
21:14 LUSINDA LUPUS: I know that most of the historical references that Robert Graves brings up tend to point to the rape myths in particular as a way of documenting the suppression of one theology with another. 
21:15 PHYA ARTISTIDES: Supressing goddess myth with Parthanon myth? 
21:15 MORGANA FLAVIUS: Roberto Calasso's book, "The Wedding of Cadmus and Harmony", has an interesting interpretation of the myths about raped women... 
21:16 TORREY PHILEMON: A lot of the transformations we're reading about result from Zeus' rape of a woman and Juno's jealous rage.... 
21:16 flavius Horatius enters...
21:16 LUSINDA LUPUS: The mother goddess was often represented by different faces (i.e. she had many guises) and some of them were honored in local shrines. 
21:16 MORGANA FLAVIUS: Welcome, Flavius! 
21:16 TORREY PHILEMON: (Hello flavius....we're taking turns, and starting with the topic of Zeus and rape myths....) 
21:17 LUSINDA LUPUS: When the Hellenes took over, they had to overcome and incorporate the local deities, therefore Zeus married them or raped them, based on the strength of the local myth. 
21:17 TORREY PHILEMON: What's that interpretation, Morgana? Are they reflecting the rape of matriarchal religions by patriarchal ones that are relegating female deities to subordinate positions or stripping them of power? 
21:17 LUSINDA LUPUS: Morgana, what does Colosso say about rape?  I didn't get that far in the book. 
21:18 TORREY PHILEMON: So Zeus raped them when the local myth did not accept assimilation and had to be forcibly overcome? 
21:18 HORATIUS FLAVIUS: If you want a really radical approach to interpretations of the role of women in myths, you might want to check into Philip Slater's "The Wrath of Hera":  but be prepared for some odd interpretations of what, for example, the medusa's head represents! 
21:18 MORGANA FLAVIUS: No, Torrey, Calasso suggest that the rapes have more to do with the conquering of a foreign land (and not its religion). 
21:19 MORGANA FLAVIUS: Calasso says that Europe and Asia were always fighting one another: Europa is taken from Asia to... well Europe! (LOL) 
21:19 HORATIUS FLAVIUS: As for me, I think that most of the modern interpretations that myths are reflections of the Jungian unconscious have as much validity as those that extrapolate that myths are a sublanguage that tells us a crypto-history of the cultures:  NOT! 
21:19 LUSINDA LUPUS: Morgana, I believe conquering a land also involves conquering its religion, particularly when mother-right is superceded by father-right. 
21:20 TORREY PHILEMON: I just grabbed my Calasso book to look up the subject, but the D__ book has no index! 
21:20 LUSINDA LUPUS: And in order for a conqueror to be recognized, he had to marry the princess of the land, so that he may be recognized by the locals in spirit as well as in might. 
21:20 PHYA ARTISTIDES: One thing i found interesting was that the transformations resulting from rape and Juno's jealously ended in isolation (they couldn't speak) whereas the women who were transformed escaping rape were honored in their transformation.I suppose this could fit into the Patriarcal religion takeover, too. The one's that weren't destroyed were incorporated into the religion. 
21:21 MORGANA FLAVIUS: ...and Europa is taken as a reply to the previous abduction of Io, from Argos... 
21:21 HORATIUS FLAVIUS: A lot is made, for example about the names, Europa and Asia, when the concepts of eponyms is fairly well established:  and if you are going to have some sauce for the goose, you had better have some for the gander:  how would you interpret all of the cuckolding in mythology? 
21:21 HORATIUS FLAVIUS: A lot is made, for example about the names, Europa and Asia, when the concepts of eponyms is fairly well established:  and if you are going to have some sauce for the goose, you had better have some for the gander:  how would you interpret all of the cuckolding in mythology? 
21:22 TORREY PHILEMON: Hmm, Phya, that's worth checking out. The women who were transformed but who weren't raped first were honored.... 
21:22 HORATIUS FLAVIUS: And any interpretation that attempts to narrow its focus on a myth to a single interpretation, or even worse, to one that tries to impose a canonical set of rules upon all myths, is as flawed as Frazier's attempt to find the vegetative cycle in every single reference, or of Graves to find the White Goddess lurking behind every single epithet or .... 
21:23 MORGANA FLAVIUS: But Europa was not punished... not raped (in my opinion). She agreed to go with the bull... 
21:23 HORATIUS FLAVIUS: And then how do you deal with the Maenads of the Dionysus cult?  And what about the adherents of the cult of Cybele whose gender is basically genderless? 
21:24 TORREY PHILEMON: Well we can be openended and multi-interpretational here...Numerous perspectives can exist simultaneously. I teach dream interpretation,and myths like dreams are multidimensional 
21:24 LUSINDA LUPUS: Shall we move over to Jungian reflections?  I've always felt that he regarded the psyche's interaction with the collective unconscious as it may be represented in a God figure as a kind of rape.  The psyche is attacked by the power of the Godhead, particularly when it is still young and not fully developed. 
21:24 MORGANA FLAVIUS: In Europa's case, she was not transformed... she had an afair with Jove, and Hera did not bother to punish her! So, it doesn't fit the archetype of "rape of a woman = suppress of matriarchic religion". 
21:25 HORATIUS FLAVIUS: And if you look carefully at the Europa myth in its context, the simple explanation would be that it is an aetiological tale to tell how the various cultures are actually springing from a common ancestry and not a focus upon the battle of the sexes. 
21:25 TORREY PHILEMON: Interesting, Lusinda. The individual identity is lost as one is overcome by the collective unconscious....(which for some is being overpowered by psychic or spiritual energy) 
21:25 MORGANA FLAVIUS: Flavius, I am following your comments with much interest... just too fast for me to talk about them... :-) 
21:25 HORATIUS FLAVIUS: Europa was punished by Hera by having a constant gadfly [gee, now you know why HE chose that name!] who would constantly harass and bother her because of her mating with Hera's husband. 
21:26 LUSINDA LUPUS: The Maenads of the cult of Orpheus were based in Thrace, in the southern mountains of Bulgaria.  They are related to the Amazons, and may have been among the few who retained some independence from the patriarchy.  Are we on the same topic, flavius? 
21:26 TORREY PHILEMON: Didn't realize that, Morgana. Did Juno/Hera know about Jova and Europa, and still not punish her, or did she simply not find out (don't remember!) 
21:27 MORGANA FLAVIUS: No, flavius, the gadfly punishment was bestowed on Io, not Europa. 
21:27 HORATIUS FLAVIUS: If you are going to argue that mythology is a reflection of the supplantation of the original mother earth religions with the sky father religions, then you have to have some sort of explanation for the cult of Dionysus, as it certainly was not according to Hoyle,...er, Zeus. 
21:27 TORREY PHILEMON: One way or another, even if generalizations aren't 100% foolproof, we do see again and again....Zeus rapes a woman, woman is transformed, Hera is on a jealous rampage... 
21:27 MORGANA FLAVIUS: Torrey, Juno knew about Europa... she chose to punish Cadmus' son instead (Cadmus was Europa's brother). 
21:28 HORATIUS FLAVIUS: Ah, you are right: it was Io! 
21:28 PHYA ARTISTIDES: (but wouldn't you be?) 
21:28 TORREY PHILEMON: Yes, the blood relatives are sometimes more punished than the original victim....but we still continually have a blame or punish the victim perspective, as Aurora pointed out previously.... 
21:29AURORA INCA: (is anybody else's screen staying blank most of the time?) 
21:29 LUSINDA LUPUS: Dionysus' cult is an integral part of the mother religions.   He is the son/consort who is ritually dismembered and then brought back to life.  His myth is linked with that of Osiris, as well as Hercules and later on Jesus. 
21:29 PHYA ARTISTIDES: not mine, Aurora 
21:30 MORGANA FLAVIUS: Europa's story does strike me in the middle of all I read -- so far -- in Metamorp. exactly because of that: there was no punishment in her case, but a very indirect one. Europa finishes her days happily in Crete. She is the mother of Kinkg Minos. 
21:30 HORATIUS FLAVIUS: I think your use of the term rape, is a very loaded term, in the context of Zeus:  how many of the "victims" were actually willing participants?  And how many were looking for a convenient excuse for the unexpected child they bore?  Think of the taboo in ancient Greece on twins: any woman bearing twins was said to have engaged in intercourse with an immortal for one of the two! 
21:30 TORREY PHILEMON: (Aurora, you may want to exit and re-enter to get your screen working more efficiently) 
21:30 Phya Artistides enters...
21:30 MORGANA FLAVIUS: Not mine either, Aurora. 
21:31 HORATIUS FLAVIUS: [How fitting to refer to Minos as "kingk":  he did have some rather kinky ideas; or at least his wife certainly did!] 
21:31 TORREY PHILEMON: (I just telegrammed Aurora to suggest she exit and re-enter. She may not be seeing what we type) 
21:31 PHYA ARTISTIDES: lol@flav 
21:32 HORATIUS FLAVIUS: And the rather amorous pursuits of Zeus were also mirrored by his own progeny: look at Apollo and Daphne, for example. 
21:32 MORGANA FLAVIUS: LOL flavius! That was a typo, but you're right! LOL! 
21:32 Aurora Inca exits...
21:32 HORATIUS FLAVIUS: [I knew it was a typo: but it just struck me as hilarious] 
21:32 TORREY PHILEMON: Is there really a choice in regard to being a "willing participant" with Zeus,  flavius? The price of saying NO to a god was a high one... 
21:32 LUSINDA LUPUS: I take the term rape to mean forced union.  That can be seen as both the rape of the land, the rape of the women and the rape of the goddess religion.  Take your pick. 
21:33 MORGANA FLAVIUS: Lusinda, there is a very big part on book III devoted to Dionisius and the punishment of Pentheus for not respecting his rites. Any comments on that? 
21:33 HORATIUS FLAVIUS: But look how often Zeus disguises himself so that the woman does not know it is a deity: golden shower, swan, etc. 
21:33 TORREY PHILEMON: Well frankly I think we've got a parallel between Zeus and his victims, and Clinton and Monica et al. I think the U.S. government has entered into the territory of decadent mythology. Are government is turning inside out and the archetypes are being vomited up, so to speak.... 
21:34 TORREY PHILEMON: Well said, Lusinda. Rape on a variety of levels. 
21:34 LUSINDA LUPUS: In Greece the women who were said to have born a son to a God were honored.  Having a God as the father meant that during the festival of that God, when women and men were free to copulate and the priests often wore the mask of the God, the resulting children were of the God's lineage. 
21:34 TORREY PHILEMON: Flavius, I imagine they know as it starts to happen.... 
21:34 HORATIUS FLAVIUS: The parallels between theophagy [Zeus and Kronos] and fellatio [Clinton and Lewinsky] are forced. 
21:34 MORGANA FLAVIUS: Torrey, why Hilary is not behaving like Juno? 
21:35 PHYA ARTISTIDES: please, no US government soap operas! 
21:35 Aurora Inca enters...
21:35 TORREY PHILEMON: Because the House of Representatives is behaving like Juno! 
21:35 MORGANA FLAVIUS: Ah, ok! :-) 
21:35 TORREY PHILEMON: Ok, no more U.S. politics. But there is a fascinating parallel here. 
21:36 LUSINDA LUPUS: Oh, LOL, this is going off.  Could we stick to an issue, or a myth, and see where we get? 
21:36 MORGANA FLAVIUS: But Juno never punished Jove! Just his "victims". 
21:37 HORATIUS FLAVIUS: Not in "Greece" proper, but in the Ionian and other eastern settlements was the consort of a deity honored.  Hellas, proper, the mainland, Corinth, Athens, Mycenae, Sparta, did not look favorably upon women who were reportedly involved with immortals:  the Pythia was the nearest equivalent of the Roman Vestal virgin; Athena was a rare goddess who was not tainted by sexual congress and who was constantly characterized as parthenos. 
21:37 PHYA ARTISTIDES: The whole punishment of of Penthus I found interesting in relation to my earlier questions about whether or not Romans belived these myths. P is clearly displayed as a non-beliver. 
21:37 TORREY PHILEMON: Well we are staying on the theme of Zeus and rape on a number of levels. There just are a number of levels to explore here. 
21:38AURORA INCA: Jove was the supreme ruler of the gods, so what could Juno do to him? But to release her anger, she COULD punish the other party. 
21:38 TORREY PHILEMON: What do you all think about Hera's Fury-like attack upon most of Zeus' victims? 
21:39 LUSINDA LUPUS: Flavius, Athena was a Cretan goddess of 1400BC who was the local protectress.  Zeus swalloed here mother, Metis, the ancient Goddess who he had to marry in order to even begin taking over the goddess cults.  Then he "gave birth" to his version of Athena.  I think we are operating on different time lines. 
21:39 PHYA ARTISTIDES: If Jove was at all inamoured by these women, as he clearly was, then by hurting them she was hurting him. I think a lot of people would rather suffer themselves than see a loved one suffer. 
21:40 MORGANA FLAVIUS: About felatio, flavius, and about what Juno did for Jove, Calasso (again) says that in the Heraion (Hera/Juno's sanctuary near argos, there was a statue in an altar, showing Hera performing felation on Zeus. It is interesting to notice that not even Venus had a statue like that in any of her temples! 
21:41 TORREY PHILEMON: Well, that goes along with our conception of Zeus...It seems that sex for him was about power over a woman, not consenting and mutually sought union.... 
21:41 MORGANA FLAVIUS: (and Torrey, that passage is in the end of chapter 1, of Calasso's book) 
21:41AURORA INCA: Or was she trying to remove the competition? Being a goddess and having one's husband prefer mere mortals would have to be a blow to one's ego! 
21:41 HORATIUS FLAVIUS: Athena was not from Crete: she was authochtonous: she sprang from the ground of Athens itself: look for myths concerning her affiliation with Ericthonius for a more plausible explanation of how they tried to conceal her past. 
21:41 TORREY PHILEMON: It also seems that Zeus suffered far less than the women suffered.... 
21:41 LUSINDA LUPUS: Temples of Venus and almost all the mystery cults, such as the one at Eleusis, worshipped the phalus or a phalic God. 
21:42 MORGANA FLAVIUS: I think Ovid was clever on the depiction of Hera's fury against Jove's victims. Let's not forget that he was also helping Augustan propaganda with his works... 
21:43 TORREY PHILEMON: "Being a goddess..."  Great line, Aurora. That would be a great epitaph of a narcissistic woman who can't keep her husband! 
21:43 HORATIUS FLAVIUS: Taking Calasso's interpretation is much like taking Joyce's version of the Odyssey or of taking any other culture's slant on the tried and true tales: 
21:44 TORREY PHILEMON: How does Hera's fury tie in with Augustan propaganda, Morgana? 
21:44 MORGANA FLAVIUS: Lusinda, I agree with flavius about Athena. I have never heard the version you presented... 
21:44 HORATIUS FLAVIUS: Augustan propaganda was directed at trying to instill the family unit and Augustus, I am sure, felt that the Metamorphoses was more of Ovid's lecherous attempts to corrupt the morals of youth and have them think that sexual escapades were pardonable. 
21:44 MORGANA FLAVIUS: Yes, Torrey, Zeus/Jove never sufers... 
21:45 HORATIUS FLAVIUS: If Ovid was helping Augustus' propaganda efforts, I would certainly hate to have seen the enemies of his agenda! 
21:45 TORREY PHILEMON: Flavius, can we accept the fact that most interpretations as a whole are basically only partially true, that there are stories that are exceptions, taht numerous interpretations can exist simultaneously. Then we don't have to squabble over whether an interpretation is perfectly accurate or not, since none (I doubt) are... 
21:45 MORGANA FLAVIUS: Agree with flavius on Ovid's purposes... but he disguised it very well, didn't he? :-) 
21:45 LUSINDA LUPUS: Flavius, I just happen to read Joseph Campbell's chapter on Zeus and his marriages, and that's where you will find the reference to the cretan serpent goddess A-TA-NA POTINIJA.  Zeus' Athena retains her relation to Crete by wearing the Medusa's head. 
21:46 HORATIUS FLAVIUS: There is absolutely no disputing that the phallos was considered an important symbol in most religions; but to focus upon this single aspect and ignore the other figures of multiple-breasted goddesses, is to pick and choose your evidence. 
21:46 TORREY PHILEMON: Morgana, there are one or two cases in which Zeus/Jove feels badly for the victims of Juno's rage and tries to help them...I forget which....but his suffering is minimal compared to theirs. 
21:47 HORATIUS FLAVIUS: I have no objections whatsoever to letting free association provide insight into interpretation: but, it should have support for any hypothesis that provides some corroboration. 
21:47 MORGANA FLAVIUS: Flavius, you think Hera's fury was just a humurous attempt to corroborate Augustus instillatoions on  the family unit? 
21:47 TORREY PHILEMON: I wonder what the women of ancient Greece thought of all these myths. Imagine being a female and worshipping a god who is a rapist and a goddess who dedicated to tormenting the victims of her husband's rape. I doubt if I'd find religion very inspiring. 
21:48 HORATIUS FLAVIUS: Hera's fury was a trope, a standard, know since the time of Homer:  think of the gods all laughing at the predicament that Ares and Aprhodite were caught in. 
21:49 MORGANA FLAVIUS: I guess Ovid wrote for a Roman audience, nor Greek... or not? 
21:49 HORATIUS FLAVIUS: I would also imagine that many women in antiquity reveled more in the tales of Demeter and Semele and Artemis who provided examples of the power of women over men than dwelling on the locker room antics of Zeus. 
21:49 TORREY PHILEMON: (aurora's still having problems seeing the screen and participating but is here in part. she just telegrammed me) 
21:50 MORGANA FLAVIUS: I guess Roman matronas, at the time of Ovid, did really enjoy those myths, Torrey! They might have feel "protected". 
21:50 TORREY PHILEMON: Part of the confusion that may be going on here is that we're taking several different perspectives at once....The perspective of the times, of individuals during those times,  of scholars, of today etc. 
21:51 PHYA ARTISTIDES: But keep in mind that women in antiquity probably wouldn't view 'oppression' in the same negative way we do. 
21:51 MORGANA FLAVIUS: Well, Torrey, who told you that the dense myth filled Metamorphoses would be easy... LOL! 
21:51 HORATIUS FLAVIUS: The Minoan syllabary of A-Ta-Na does not necessarily connote Athena as we know her: it may well be that the word was a title, an epithet, as opposed to a reference to a specific goddess: and, yes, I know that the other word is the word for "mistress". 
21:52 TORREY PHILEMON: (I did just read a newstory about a mideastern country where brothers kill sisters who are raped because of the family shame. It's still happpening. The woman has to be punished) 
21:53 LUSINDA LUPUS: Flavius, let's put that one to rest and go on to Ovid, shall we? 
21:53 MORGANA FLAVIUS: Yes, Torrey. 
21:53 TORREY PHILEMON: Ok, folks, do you want to switch to another topic? We were going to do the overlapping one next of what the myths tell us about the Roman culture or Ovid, as you will....a subject which we've already been exploring.... 
21:53 HORATIUS FLAVIUS: The "translation" of the Minoan language is still  highly suspect as there has yet to be independent corroboration of some of the creative interpretations or translations:  at present, almost anyone can read almost anything into the fragmentary evidence:  and the evidence is almost as sparse as that in Israel for the existence of David or Solomon from an archaeological or linguistic perspective. 
21:54 LUSINDA LUPUS: Ovid's political context is a difficult one to discuss.  I have been reading "The Politics of Immorality in Ancient Rome", and it has a very interesting view of the rhetorics of accusations of immorality as a way of defining the political elite in Rome. 
21:54 MORGANA FLAVIUS: Now... I wonder where "love" fits in as an agent of transformation... 
21:54 Aurora Inca enters...
21:55 HORATIUS FLAVIUS: With Ovid, you have to understand, that the rise of the schools of rhetoric as a suitable replacement for the former academic freedom of Athens 
21:55 Nimue Cormac enters...
21:55 LUSINDA LUPUS: Ah, "love"  does anyone want to try it?  What about Narcissus? 
21:56 HORATIUS FLAVIUS: or of the Roman senate during its heyday had caused creative writers to turn to writing of hypothetical or really obscure or profoundly impossible situations in an effort to exercise their mind. 
21:56 MORGANA FLAVIUS: Torrey, I really would love to hear about what Ovid was telling to the people of his time. 
21:56 PHYA ARTISTIDES: asection I found interesting was when Juno and Jove were arguing about who enjoyed love more, Jove saying women, Juno saying men...and Jove was declared right by Tiresias. 
21:56 TORREY PHILEMON: I don't see any signs of real love anywhere so far, do any of you? Most of what we see is desire or infatuation.... 
21:57 TORREY PHILEMON: Yes, Morgana, but I don't know if anyone here knows enough about Ovid's conscious message to the Romans to discuss it informatively. 
21:57 LUSINDA LUPUS: Flavius, I am refering to the speches of Cicero and his innuendo.  This is not my field at all, so please excuse me if I use the wrong terms. 
21:58 HORATIUS FLAVIUS: And Ovid was the beginning of this trend as he sought to show his versatility and his broad knowledge base and his encyclopedic styles in dealing with what had formerly been treated as dry and boring recitations: cf. the mythographoi of this period who were all overshadowed by Ovid's efforts to catalogue the myths as a coherent literary work. 
21:58 PHYA ARTISTIDES: Torrey, the idea of love as we see it only came about in the Middle Ages. 
21:59 TORREY PHILEMON: A process comment. Do you all want to focus on one topic at a time here, or just go spontaneously in several different directions ( like scattering seeds and seeing which one's get fertilized)... 
22:00 LUSINDA LUPUS: The most interesting thing about Rome at the time of Ovid is that it was becoming a truly cosmopolitan society, with many foreigners, senators who were born in Gaul, etc.  And there was a need to define what was special about being Roman.  August tried to do it by focusing on the ancient morality as a means of defining Romans and better than all the other "lisentious" peoples. 
22:00 MORGANA FLAVIUS: Things are going very frantic here... I guess that's due to the fact the Metamorphoses is really rich in the number of myths it protrays. 
22:01AURORA INCA: As I recall, Augustus wasn't too fond of Ovid, was he? 
22:01 HORATIUS FLAVIUS: Amen, Phya, the conceit of Amor, was a much later development: and again one of those forced literary conceits, like the anagram of Roma, the word itself: and it provided very ample grist for the medieval writers who had to wrestle with the equation that Roma=Amor. 
22:01 LUSINDA LUPUS: And during Ovid's time women were becoming more powerful - they could own property and often commission art works.  His works were widely read by the elite women of the time., 
22:01 MORGANA FLAVIUS: Interesting, Lusinda! 
22:01 TORREY PHILEMON: It's hard to see how reading the Metamorphoses as a Roman could be an education in what it means to be Roman....(the Aeneid is another story). What about the rest of you? 
22:02 HORATIUS FLAVIUS: Augustus banished Ovid for a "carmen et error" to the shores of the Euxine Sea, the Black Sea where Ovid wrote unceasingly in a whining and wheedling tone begging to be allowed to return to Rome: but all in vain. 
22:02 MORGANA FLAVIUS: Aurora, I guess Augustus became to really dislike Ovid when he heard that Ovid was having an affair with Julia, Augusutus' daughter. Metamorphoses was written before that. 
22:03 Nimue Cormac exits...
22:03 MORGANA FLAVIUS: Hi Nimue! 
22:03 HORATIUS FLAVIUS: We don't really know what involvement Ovid had with Julia: the evidence is simply not there to leap to the conclusion that Julia and Ovid even had a fling, or that they even met in a situation that would be described as compromising. 
22:03 HORATIUS FLAVIUS: If Ovid's crime was a carmen, or a poem, it probably was his Ars Amatoria and NOT the Metamorphoses. 
22:04 LUSINDA LUPUS: Flavius, you are right about Amor as a conceit of Ovid's.  His Arts of Love start with an apology for writing under the direction of Amor, rather than with the more serious subjects of epic poems. 


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