Events Series: Sing in me, Muse: The Classical, the Critical, and the Creative

A Series of talks, workshops, readings, discussions on the social, political and cultural relevance of the classics to our times.

Convened by Isobel Hurst and Lucia Boldrini

Calliope, Muse of Epic Poetry. Source: New York Public Library,

This series of Classical Reception Studies events, which started in Autumn 2022 and continues in 2023-24 (and, we hope, beyond), brings together scholars and students from a variety of disciplines with creative writers and other artists, to examine how the literary and material cultures of ancient Greece, the Near East and Rome have been adapted and rewritten at later times and other places.

The series will include talks, readings by creative writers, critical and creative workshops, and roundtable discussions.

Some of the events will be in person, and some online (or both) and several will combine with other events of the CCL or of other research centres at Goldsmiths.


Programme, 2023-24

(Click here if you want to see the 2022-23 programme and watch the video recordings of the seminars)

12 October 2023, 18.00 BST (in person and online)

Taking advantage of our first CCL Annual Lecture, Sing in Me, Muse welcomes Dame Professor Marina Warner who, in her lecture ‘Viral Spiral: Multiple Shape-shifting from Ovid to Covid’, will explore the shape-shifting of Ovid’s Metamorphoses, looking at the ways in which writers honour Ovid’s epic endeavour – ‘to spin a continuous song from the first origins of the world to my own time’ – by extending the poem’s reach to the present day, revisiting it to understand, critique and challenge their present circumstances.

The event will be online and in person. Click here to read more about the event and book to attend (or watch the recording after the event).

2 November 2023, 18.00 UTC (in person and online)

Professor Barbara Graziosi (Princeton) will speak on ‘”The chancy story of the Phoenician woman”: Reading Homer with Virginia Woolf”.

This event will be online and in person. Click here to read more about the event and book to attend (or watch the recording after the event).

7 December 2023, 18.00 UTC (in person and online)

Nora GoldschmidtFor the final event of 2023, we join forces with the CCL seminar series  ‘Auto / Bio / Fiction‘ to welcome Professor Nora Goldschmidt (Durham)’s reflections on the ancient history of biofiction and its reception.

The event will be online and in person. Click here to read more about the event and book to attend (or watch the recording after the event).


The Spring 2024 programme had to be postponed due to staff leave, but we’ll return with Olympoetics on 12 June 2024.


We look forward to meeting many of you in person or online, and to the lively discussions that all these talks will no doubt generate.

You may also be interested in our short courses on contemporary retellings of Greek myths, focusing on Homer’s Iliad and Odyssey

The Organisers

Isobel Hurst’s research examines the reception of Greek and Latin literature in English, looking at the connection between classical education and authorship and women writers’ creative engagement with the classical tradition. She is the author of Victorian Women Writers and the Classics: The Feminine of Homer (2006) and has published essays in the Oxford Handbook of Victorian Poetry (2013) and the Oxford History of Classical Reception in English Literature (2015). Her work on contemporary women writers and the classics appears in Living Classics: Greece and Rome in Contemporary Poetry in English (2009), the Classical Receptions Journal and Homer’s Daughters: Women’s Responses to Homer in the Twentieth Century and Beyond (2019).

Lucia Boldrini is Professor of English and Comparative Literature and Director of the CCL. Her research interests include fictional biography and autobiography; Joyce, Dante and modernist medievalism; comparative literature; and literature on and from the Mediterranean area. Among her books: Autobiographies of Others: Historical Subjects and Literary Fiction (Routledge, 2012); Joyce, Dante, and the Poetics of Literary Relations (CUP, 2001); and as editor, Experiments in Life-Writing: Intersections of Auto/Biography and Fiction, with Julia Novak (Palgrave, 2017). She is a member of the Academia Europaea, and President of the International Comparative Literature Association.