The Binarism of Fragment and Whole:from the Jena Romantics to the ‘New Sappho’ digital
formato: Articolo | AEVUM ANTIQUUM - 2009 - 9
One of the main questions concerning the new Sappho is whether or not it is complete. Scholars choose one side or the other: the twelve lines of the “New Sappho” are a complete poem, or the poem continues, as it appears to do in the Oxford papyrus (POxy 1787). The binarism, i.e., of fragment and whole, that frames the discussion should itself be discussed. It has a discernible history (§1), which culminates in the mid-twentieth century with the advent of literary theory and a new conception of literature (§2). At that time, along with many changes that took place outside the field of Classics, within this field came “oral theory.” One of its implications was that the communication of archaic poetry was principally in performance. In the perspective of performance, with its various possibilities of adaptive reuse of the same poetic materials, the binarism is difficult to maintain (§3). Reuse continues in writing (§§4-5). Some consequences for the understanding of the “New Sappho” are considered in the penultimate section of this paper (§6). Finally, a distinction between fragment and part is proposed (§7).
Expanding the context and audience response: reflections on the methodology of Carlo Brillante’s Il controverso nostos digital
formato: Articolo | AEVUM ANTIQUUM - 2005 - 5
Two methods can be used to corroborate Brillante’s findings. The first, in fact used by Brillante himself, is the expansion of the context of Od. 4.512-522 as a way of explaining its apparent anomaly. The other method (well known, like the first, from hermeneutics), implied by him en passant, assumes that part of the meaning of the explicandum had to be created by the audience. The word ἐσχατίη, in particular, can be understood in this way.