Anna Fyta on Parallel Conversations with Greek Myth

September 19, 2017

The Stavros Niarchos Foundation Centre for Hellenic Studies, in collaboration with the Department of Gender, Sexuality, and Women's Studies, is pleased to present a talk by Dr. Anna Fyta (NYU, University of Ioannina) entitled "Parallel Conversations with Greek Myth: Judy Grahn, Louise Glück and Margaret Atwood read H.D.’s Mythic Personae."

Date: Sept. 19, 2017

Time: 11:30pm
Campus: SFU Burnaby
Room: Academic Quadrangle 5119


Tales of mythic discourse can become a powerful tool in piecing together one’s own poetic body. The process and the variants are infinite yet the myths finite and perpetually re-read and re-inscribed. Greek mythology has offered an organizing method in works like James Joyce’s Ulysses or may have inspired Anne Carson’s confession that through the Classics, “we think connections between thoughts” because the myths move the mind. But what cultural and historical threads, echoes or voices does Greek myth revive and reveal? Maybe, it stimulates the disclosure of some underlying aesthetic stasis or the need to invent new creative gateways and directions. Myth, we are told, advances generic concerns or helps to radicalize poetic discourse. Based on these premises, three contemporary American women poets – Judy Grahn, Louise Glück and Margaret Atwood—read and translate Greek myth after H.D.’s early idiosyncratic readings of Helen of Troy, Circe and Eurydice. Several decades following the first publication of H.D.’s poems, these eminent American women poets retrieve and re-write their own contributions to the originary myths about women sidelined or silenced in canonical texts. Dr. Fyta’s lecture explores the poems as interwoven panels-renderings of these three well-known female figures from ancient Greek mythology.