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Democratic Readings of Addison’s “Cato” Then and Now: Classical Reception before and after Barack Obama
September 15, 2016 @ 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Lecturer: Judith P. Hallett, Professor
Department of Classics, University of Maryland
Begun when Joseph Addison was a 15-year old Oxford undergraduate in 1687, Cato premiered on the London stage in 1713; it soon became extremely popular in the colonies– with its hero symbolizing resistance to British tyranny– and much quoted by such champions of revolution as Nathan Hale, Patrick Henry and George Washington himself. Hallett explores the evolving reactions of classical scholars to the play’s representations of race and gender from the 1990s to the present day, considering how the election of Barack Obama to the US presidency in 2008 has affected interpretations of the interracial romance at the center of the play’s action.
Hosted by the Department of Classics