Lawrence Kim F'20

Lawrence  Kim
Professor
Classical Studies
Trinity University

ACLS Fellowship Program 2020
Professor
Classical Studies
Trinity University
Anti-Classicism in Imperial Greece: The Idea of the Archaic

Greek culture under the High Roman Empire (27 BCE–235 CE) is known for its ‘classicism’, the admiration for the art, literature, and intellectual achievements of a notionally ‘classical’ era (c. 800–323 BCE), all of which were felt to reflect a set of idealized abstract qualities (e.g., moderation, clarity, harmony, and order) eminently worthy of imitation. My project, however, identifies and investigates a series of non-classical values, that I term ‘archaic’, because they are not only conceived of as anti- but also pre-classical. By showing how Imperial Greek authors deploy notions of the ‘archaic’ to criticize the more normative strictures of the classicizing paradigm, my work aims to reach a more nuanced understanding of how Imperial Greeks interacted with their literary heritage and their history.