Ellen Oliensis receives the 2021 Charles J. Goodwin Award of Merit from the Society for Classical Studies


Ellen Oliensis, Klio Distinguished Professor of Classical Languages and Literature, and Professor of Ancient Greek & Roman Studies and Comparative Literature at the University of California, Berkeley has received the 2021 Charles J. Goodwin Award of Merit from the Society for Classical Studies for her monograph, Loving writing/Ovid’s Amores (Cambridge University Press, 2019). See here for the citation praising her book on the SCS website.

The IOS asked Professor Oliensis to share some of her thoughts on her award-winning volume.

Q: Congratulations on receiving this prestigious award! What is the major premise of your monograph?

A: I think the major premise is that the Amores features a single character, a lover who is also a poet (I call him “Naso”), and that there is constant interference between this character’s writing life and his love life. So what I am offering is a complement or alternative to the prevailing approaches to the collection, which tend to emphasize one dimension of the speaker at the expense of the other.

Q: What, as you see it, is the most fruitful result of this line of analysis?

A: Resisting the bifurcation of Naso opens up many new interpretive possibilities. I start off by focusing on the seamy emotions that percolate through Naso’s most “poetic” performances. One way I get at these emotions is by reading poems in sequence; for example, reading Amores 3.15 with 3.14 brings out the aggressive contrastive stress that elevates Naso-the-immortal-poet at the expense of his worldly and promiscuous girlfriend.

Then in the second half of the book I reverse course and experiment with taking Naso’s desire seriously, exploring its kinship with masochism, both the specific profile associated with Leopold von Sacher-Masoch and the generalized account, originary masochism, developed by Jean Laplanche. This double movement across the two halves of the book is fundamental to my argument because it shows, first from one side and then from the other, the absolute entanglement of desire and writing. This is why, though I start the book by drawing a very sharp distinction between Naso and Ovid, I end by bringing them back together.

Q: What inspired you to approach Naso (Ovid) in this way?

A: I think it was my own pleasure in reading the Amores, coupled with my sense that the existing scholarship, however insightful and persuasive, did not overlap very much with my own experience of the collection. So, I felt the need to write a book that would capture and convey that experience.

Past Events

Ovids Spiel mit dem Kalender: Neue Perspektiven auf Ovids Fasti
Online Workshop
January 21-22, 2022

Link to Flyer with Zoom information

Friday, January 21, 2022

13.30 Simon Grund (Tübingen), Dennis Pulina, (Berlin)
Introductory Remarks

13.45 Maud Pfaff | Strasbourg
Sind Ovids Fasti doch ein ‚didaktisches Gedicht‘?
Sollen aitiologische Mythen ein ‚Wissen‘ über Rom und die Welt vermitteln?

14.30 Coffee Break

14.45 Darja Šterbenc Erker (Berlin)
Ovids Fasti als politisch-religiöse Satire

15.30 Lisa Cordes (Berlin)
Dolche im März, Hagel im April. Zum historiographisch- panegyrischen Potential des Kalenders

16.15 Coffee Break

16.30 Carole Newlands (Boulder, CO)
Performing Foundation: the Gendered Role of Baking in Ovid’s Fasti

17.15 Wolfgang Polleichtner (Tübingen)
Ovid und das Adynaton in den Fasti

Saturday, January 22, 2022

10.00 Dennis Pulina (Berlin)
Über das Exzeptionelle im Exemplarischen. Heldenerinnerung in Ovids Fasti.

10.45 Therese Fuhrer (München)
Ovids ‚Kalender‘ als Erinnerungsort für menschliches Scheitern

11.30 Coffee Break

11.45 Simon Grund, Robert Kirstein (Tübingen)
Balance und poetische Autonomie in Ovids Dichtung? (Un-) Zuverlässiges Erzählen in den Fasti und den Metamophosen

12.30 Lunch Break

13.30 Gareth Williams (New York)
Setting up Romulus for a fall: Romulus and Numa in the Fasti

14.15 Simon Grund (Tübingen), Dennis Pulina (Berlin)
Closing Remarks

August 30-September 1, 2021:  New Trends in Ovid's Reading and Reception

Organizers: Jacqueline Fabre-Serris and Alison Keith

The 2nd meeting of the International Ovidian Society in Europe, organized by Jacqueline Fabre-Serris and Alison Keith, will take place, using an hybrid format, at the Fondation Hardt. Conference attendance is open for everyone interested. The link zoom for the three days is:

Zoom ID: 933 2005 4508

Zoom Password: 718479


Monday 30 Aug

17:00: Introduction by Pierre Ducrey, Directeur de la Fondation Hardt, Andrew Feldherr and Jacqueline Fabre-Serris

17:30-18:30: Philip Hardie - The Ovidian Sublime. Antiquity and After


Tuesday 31 Aug

14:00-15:00 (Chair: Damien Nelis)

Andrew Feldherr - The Gate of Horns: Politics and Reception in Ovid's Cipus Episode (Met. 15.565-621)

Jacqueline Fabre-Serris - L'extension du domaine de l'amour (Mét. 1.452-73 et 5.346-84): deux moments clefs dans l’epos ‘empédocléen’ d’Ovide ?

15:25-16:55 (Chair: Barbara Weiden Boyd)

Andreas Michalopoulos – Male Voices in the Heroides

Theasellias Thorsen – The ontology of Ovid’s femina

Alison Keith - Women’s Voices in Ovid’s Pyramus & Thisbe and Salmacis & Hermaphroditus

17:25–18:25 (Chair: Hunter Gardner)

Alessandro Schiesaro - Freeze! Of stones, humans, and metamorphoses

Alison Sharrock - Human, inhuman and post-human


Wenesday 1 Sept

14:00-15:00 (Chair: Carole Newlands)

Ulrich Schmitzer - Ficta refers - Ovids subversive Erzählung von Philemon und Baucis

Frank Coulson - Phaethon's Wild Ride: Medieval Commentary on Met. II.1-400

15:25-16:55 (Chair: Alison Keith)

John Miller - Connecting the Disconnected: the Kalends of May in Ovid’s Fasti

Barbara Weiden Boyd - Ovidian Linearities

Florence Klein - Retour sur le problème du carmen perpetuum

17:25-18:25 (Chair: Philip Hardie)

Hunter Gardner - Anatomies of Failed Revolution in Ovid's Aeginetan Plague and Mary Shelley's The Last Man

Carole Newlands - Ali Smith and Robin Robertson: Scottish Ovidianism in the Twenty-first century

January 7-10, 2021:  Ovid and the Constructed Visual Environment (SCS Panel of the International Ovidian Society)

Organizers: Andrew Feldherr (Princeton University) and Teresa Ramsby (UMass Amherst)

Herica Valladares, UNC Chapel Hill: “Viewing and Reading the Heroides in the House of Jason in Pompeii.”

Albert Bates, Cambridge University: “Arachne’s Tapestry and the Metaphors of Ecphrasis.”

Miriam Kamil, Harvard University: “Locus suspectus: Landscape and the Uncanny in Ovid’s Metamorphoses.”

Ashley Simone, Columbia University: “Ovid’s Phaethon and Failed Cosmic Vision.”

Del A. Maticic, New York University: “Materiam superabat opus? Raw Materiality in Ovid’s Phaethon Episode (Met. 2.1-366).”

April 17-20, 2020:  “Between Two Worlds
Ovid Shaping Literary Tradition from Virgil to the Post-Classical” (Classical Association Annual Meeting, Swansea University)

Program (.pdf)

Herman Fränkel’s seminal book Ovid: A Poet between Two Worlds (1945) sought, against the background of 19th-century classicism and aversion to all things ‘declining’, to situate the maverick late-Augustan as speaking not only to the classical world but also the Christian culture of late antiquity and the Middle Ages. For much of the 20th century, Ovid was perceived, not always positively, as the mediator between so-called Golden and Silver Latin poetry, and as such was used (one might say) to explain, excuse, or excoriate the ‘silveriness’ of post-Augustan poetry. Then came the explosion of interest in Neronian and Flavian literature towards the end of the last century up to the present day, in which, despite massive ongoing interest in Ovid’s poetry itself, the role of the Metamorphoses as a mediator between the Aeneid and later epic was somewhat lost in the face of the sophisticated exploration of Virgilian intertextuality for post-Augustan Latin epic which was the legacy of Philip Hardie’s important book, The Epic Successors of Virgil (1993). Despite a special issue of Arethusa (2002) which sought to re-contextualise for the new millennium the ancient reception of Ovid, the dominance of Virgil in later Latin poetry has continued to occlude the role of Ovid in literary history, especially of the first century after the death of Augustus. The present panel proposes to look again at the diachronic intertextuality of ancient epic, looking both backwards and forwards from Ovid.

Panel Organizer: Alison Sharrock (University of Manchester)

  1. Anke Walker, “Rome's fatum in Ovid's Fasti
  2. Eleni Ntanou, “Re)shaping Literary Tradition: Pastoral Encounters in Ovid's Metamorphoses
  3. Alison Sharrock, “reges et proelia: Ovid and war in the Roman epic tradition”
  4. Julene Abad-del Vecchio, “quid Odyssea est? The reception of Ovid's 'Odyssean' themes in post-Augustan literature”
  5. Spohia Papaioannou, “Ovid's artistic rivalries and Nonnus' transformed epic contests"
  6. Catalina Popescu, “The Hue of Beauty: Intentional Ambiguities for Ovid's Andromeda”
  7. Aaron Kachuck, "Per monstra ad astra: Pegasean Poetics from Ovid to Aby Warburg"

February 8, 2019:  “Ovid, Rhetoric, and Freedom of Speech in the Late Augustan Age.” (Baylor University)


  1. Welcome, Ken Jones
  2. Carole Newlands, “Aesacus, the ‘Forgotten Hero’ at the End of Met. 11”
  3. Alessandra Romeo, “Cephalus’ autobiographical narrative (Ovid, Metamorphoses 7. 690-865) between epic models and rhetorical conventions”
  4. Eleonora Tola, “Distant Mores, distant mores: Persuading the Reader from the Margins in Tristia 2”
  5. Alden Smith, “Propior Patriae: Allusion, Rhetoric and Persuasion in Ex Ponto 1.2”
  6. Laurent Pernot, “‘Figured Speech’ and Free-spokenness in Seneca the Elder
  7. Hélène Vial, “‘I attack not him’: the Rhetorical Treatment and Political Issue of (not) Naming the Enemy in Ovid's Last Works”
  8. Julia Hejduk, "Lessons from a Doctor of Irony"
  9. Respondent, Karl Galinsky.

February 25-26, 2019: "From Tomis to China: Ovid's Exile Poetry and Its Translation Across Time and Culture" (Yale-NUS College, Singapore)


Steven J. Green will be running a two-day workshop on Ovid’s exile poetry, which is designed to support an existing international project charged with translating into Mandarin, and providing commentaries for, the entire corpus of Ovid. Three international Chinese scholars working on the translation project will be attending the workshop, as well as one of the Yale-NUS alumni who is attached to the project, and the aim is to explore different aspects of Ovid’s exile poetry, discover synergies with Chinese (exile) poetry, and discuss challenges in translating a mercurial author like Ovid into Mandarin for a contemporary non-specialist Chinese audience.

Four sessions will focus on: Ovid’s poetic book of exile; Tomis as constructed land of exile; Ovid as Virgil’s hero; Ovid as the sum of all sufferers (which will involve discussion of Heroides and Metamorphoses).

The workshop is generously sponsored by both Yale-NUS and the Tan Chin Tuan Chinese Culture and Civilisation Programme.

Attendance is free and all are welcome. Supporting materials for the workshop will be in Latin, English, and Mandarin. Interested parties should let Dr. Green know by email ( so that he can ensure adequate catering.

Invited Participants

Jinyu Liu (DePauw University/ Shanghai Normal University; PI of Ovid translation project)

Chun Liu (Peking University; project translator)

Ying Xiong (Shanghai Normal University; project translator)

Pei Yun Chia (alumna, Yale-NUS; project translator)

March 8-9, 2019: Classical Association of New England (Holy Cross College in Worcester, MA.)


  1. Brief Introduction, Teresa Ramsby (UMass Amherst),
  2. “And You're to Blame: Amor and Ovid from the Love Poetry to Ex Ponto 3.3,” Angeline Chiu (University of Vermont)
  3. “The Politics of Assent in Ovid’s Fasti,” Daniel Libatique (Holy Cross College),
  4. Aestus Erat,” James Aglio (Boston University)
  5. “The Medieval Philomela and Vernacular Adaptation,” Daniel Armenti (UMass Amherst)
  6. Response, Patricia Johnson (Boston University).

March 29-30, 2019: Ovidius Philosophus: An international conference on philosophy in Ovid and Ovid as a philosopher (Columbia University)

Link to Conference Website


Friday, March 29th

  1. Introduction, Katharina Volk and Gareth Williams (Columbia University)
  2. Ovidius sapiens: The Learned Man in Ovid's Work", Francesca Romano Berno (Università di Roma, La Sapienza)
  3. “The End(s) of Philosophy in Tomis: Empedoclean Traces in Ovid's Exilic Poetry,” Gareth Williams (Columbia University)
  4. “Elegy, Tragedy, and the Choice of Ovid (Amores 3.1),” Laurel Fulkerson (The Florida State University)
  5. “Ovid's Amatory Poetry and the Hedonic Calculus,” Roy Gibson (Durham University)
  6. "Criticizing Love's Critic: Epicurean parrhesia as an Instructional Mode in Ovidian Love Elegy", Erin Hanses (Pennsylvania State University).
  7. "Ovid's Art of Life", Katharina Volk (Columbia University)
  8. "The Makeup of the World: The Ars Amatoria and Ovid's Theory of Kosmos", Del Maticic (New York University)
  9. "Labor and pestis in Ovid's Metamorphoses", Alison Keith (University of Toronto)

Saturday, March 30th

  1. "Intimations of Mortality: Ovid and the End(s) of the World", Alessandro Schiesaro (University of Manchester)
  2. “Cognitive and Textual Imprints: The Wax-Metaphor in Ovid's Speech of Pythagoras and Plato's Theaetetus", Peter Kelly (University of Oregon)
  3. “Calliope in Metamorphoses 5 (341-661): An Empedocleo-Lucretian Muse,” Charles Ham (Grand Valley State University)
  4. “Some Say the World Will End in Fire: Philosophizing Phaethon and the Memnonides in Ovid and His Readers,” Darcy Krasne (Columbia University)
  5. “Ovid Against the Elements: Adynata, Paradoxography, and Natural Philosophy in the Tristia and Ex Ponto,” Sara Myers (University of Virginia)
  6. "Akrasia and Agency in Ovidian Elegy", Donncha O'Rourke (University of Edinburgh)
  7. "Keep up the Good Work: (Don't) Do it like Ovid (Sen. Nat. Quaest. 3.27-30)", Myrto Garani (National and Kapodistrian University of Athens)
  8. "Philosophizing Reincarnations of Ovid: Lucan to Alexander Pope", Philip Hardie (University of Cambridge)

April 3, 2019, 8:00-9:15 p.m.: "Ovidius a nostris temporibus ad futurum" (Classical Association of the Middle West and South, Women’s Classical Caucus Panel)


Daniel Libatique (College of the Holy Cross), organizer

Nandini Pandey (University of Wisconsin Madison), presider

  1. Scelus est pietas: The Oresteia in Ovid’s Metamorphoses.” Ian Nurmi (Boston University)
  2. “Visualizing Speech and Speaking about Vision: Focalization in Ovid’s Metamorphoses 1 and 6.” Daniel Libatique (College of the Holy Cross)
  3. “Revisiting the Metamorphoses from Exile: Reception of Deucalion and Pyrrha’s Prayer (Met. 1.377-80) in Tristia 2.” Megan Bowen (University of Virginia)
  4. “Breasts are Best? Translation and the Ovidian Female Body.” Stephanie McCarter (Sewanee - The University of the South)

April 4, 2019: “Ovid and Art, A Symposium.” (NYU)

Participants: Matthew S. Santirocco, Alessandro Barchiesi, Bettina Bergmann, Dennis Geronimus, Pepe Karmel, Louise Rice, Katharina Volk

In conjunction with the exhibit at Grey Art Gallery, NYU: “Metamorphoses: Ovid According to Wally Reinhardt, January 9–April 6, 2019 (

April 26, 2019: Boston Area Roman Studies Conference: Ovid and Augustan Culture: A Conference in Honor of Patricia J. Johnson


1. John F. Miller, University of Virginia: “The Lover’s Calendar”

2. Ioannis Ziogas, Durham University: “Lex amatoria: Teaching Law and Love in the Age of Augustus”

3. Barbara Weiden Boyd, Bowdoin College: “Still, She Persisted: Materiality and Memory in Ovid’s Metamorphoses”

Response: Patricia J. Johnson, Boston University

May 7-9, 2019: IOS Panel at Classical Association of Canada (Hamilton, ON)

May 20-24, 2019: "Ovid and the Latin Classics in Chinese" (Columbia Global Centers - Beijing)

June 18-19, 2019: "International Ovidian Society European Launch" (Scuola Normale Superiore, Pisa)


Tuesday, June 18

9:00 am — Welcome remarks - Gianpiero Rosati (Scuola Normale Superiore) and Alison Keith (University of Toronto)

9:30-11:00 — Session 1, Vergil, Pseudo-Vergil, and Ovid. Chair — Alessandro Schiesaro (University of Manchester)

  • Gianpiero Rosati (Scuola Normale Superiore) – “Gallo in Virgilio e Saffo in Ovidio: due metapoeti e la loro fortuna”
  • Laurel Fulkerson (Florida State University) – “Trapped Between Scylla and Ciris: a Study in Genre and Poetic Composition”
  • Mario Labate (Università di Firenze) – “Le imprese degli eroi: strutture catalogiche nell’Eneide e nelle Metamorfosi”

11:30-12:30 — Session 2, Amatory Elegy. Chair — Laurel Fulkerson (Florida State University)

  • Jacqueline Fabre-Serris (Université Lille 3) – “Narratology, Gender and immorality. From Sulpicia 3.9 and 11 to Ovid’s Heroides”
  • Alison Keith (University of Toronto) – “Iterative Stuctures in Ovid’s Amores 2”

12:30-14:00 — Lunch, Scuola Normale Superiore

14:00-16:00 — Session 3, Art and Poetry in the Metamorphoses. Chair — Gianpiero Rosati (Scuola Normale Superiore)

  • Alessandro Barchiesi (NYU) – “Reflections on Metamorphosis and Art”
  • Andrew Feldherr (Princeton) – “Ovid’s Narcissus: Seeing Time”
  • Federica Bessone (Università di Torino) – “L’illusione del lettore. Strategie di scrittura, politica della ricezione”
  • Barbara Weiden Boyd (Bowdoin) – “Materiality and Memory in Ovid”

16:30-18:30 — Session 4, Gender and Genre in the Metamorphoses and Fasti. Chair — Alison Keith (University of Toronto)

  • Carole Newlands (University of Colorado, Boulder) – “Aesacus: the Forgotten Hero (Met. 11.749–Met. 12.1–6)”
  • Alison Sharrock (University of Manchester) – “noua … corpora: New Bodies and Gendered Patterns”
  • Sara Myers (University of Virginia) – “Ovid’s Flora and Pomona: Gender and Genre in the Garden”
  • John F. Miller (University of Virginia) – “Ovid’s Myth of Maiestas”

Wednesday, June 19

9:00-10:00 — Session 5, Ovid in/on Exile. Chair — Carole Newlands (University of Colorado – Boulder)

  • Melanie Möller (Freie Universität Berlin) – “Ovid and Odysseus: On the Rhetoric of Exile”
  • Alessandro Schiesaro (University of Manchester) – “Intimations of Mortality: Ovid and the End(s) of the World”

10:30-11:30 — Session 6, Ovidian Receptions. Chair — John F. Miller (University of Virginia)

  • Philip Hardie (Cambridge University) – “Flying Chariots and Shooting Stars. Vehicles of Apotheosis”
  • Richard Tarrant (Harvard University) – “Editing Ovid: Where Do We Stand”

11:30 — Closing remarks - Laurel Fulkerson (Florida State University) and Gianpiero Rosati (Scuola Normale Superiore)

July 4-8, 2019: “The Dominant Female in Ovid’s Metamorphoses, and its reception.” (London, 15th FIEC Congress FIEC/CA 2019)


Organizer: Thomas J. Sienkewicz (, Professor of Classics Emeritus, Monmouth College (Monmouth, Illinois, USA)

Presider: Jinyu Liu (, Professor of Classics, DePauw University (Greencastle, Indiana, USA) and Shanghai Normal University (China)

  1. 1.“An Outsider’s Observations on the Reception of Ovid in China”, Fritz-Heiner Mustchler (, Professor of Classics Emeritus, Universität Dresden (Germany) and Guest Professor at Peking University (Beijing, China)
  2. “Scenes from Ovid's Metamorphoses on 18th-century Chinese Export Porcelains”, Will Motley (, researcher at Cohen and Cohen (London, England, United Kingdom (
  3. “Ovid's Debut in Chinese: Translating Ars Amatoria in Republican China”
    Xinyao Xiao (, Ph.D. candidate in Comparative Literature, University of Texas at Austin (USA)
  4. “The Writing Heroines in Ovid’s Heroides: How Do They Sound in Chinese?", Chun Liu (, Associate Professor of English, Peking University (Beijing, China)
  5. “Medicamina into Mandarin: Ovid at the Linguistic Crossroads”, Steven Green (, Associate Professor of Humanities, Yale-NUS College (Singapore) and Pei Yun Chia  (, Alumna, Yale-NUS College (Singapore)

Respondent: Jinyu Liu (, Professor of Classics, DePauw University (Greencastle, Indiana, USA) and Shanghai Normal University (China)