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Taking as its point of departure the astounding longevity and ubiquity in our culture of so many themes, genres, visual forms and personalities from the ancient Greek and Roman world, this conference focuses on popular receptions of Classical Antiquity. In doing so, we will explore specific receptions that make immediate sense in a ‘present’ and among large, popular audiences. In particular, it will focus on three main themes: the reception of Classical Antiquity in Danish popular culture, in popular music, as well as the popular reception of individual lives in both antiquity and later periods.

The conference is a collaboration between the research programme “Classical Antiquity and its Heritage”, the Centre for the Study of Antiquity and Christianity (C-SAC), and Aarhus Institute of Advanced Studies (AIAS). The conference is sponsored by the Carlsberg Foundation and the AU School of Culture and Society.


Thursday, 2 September 

Join the meeting on Zoom here.

09:30Registration and coffee
10:00Keynote 1 (Chair: Marianne Pade):
Edith Hall, KCL: The Iliad Beyond the Academy in the 21st Century
11:45Keynote 2 (Chair: Vinnie Nørskov):  Lorna Hardwick, Open Uni: What’s Behind the Label?
14:30Paper Session 1: Classical Antiquity and Danish Popular Culture (Chair: Troels Myrup Kristensen)  
Vinnie Nørskov, AU: The Unruly Power of Myth: Classical Narratives in Contemporary Danish Art
Jakob Engberg, AU: From Wronged Imperialists in Search of Peace to Emperors as Puppets of Germanic Chieftains: The Romans and the Roman Empire in Claus Deleuran’s “The Illustrated Danish History for the People”
16:30Paper Session 1: Classical Antiquity and Danish Popular Culture (cont.)
Jens Krasilnikoff, AU: Finding Pericles Lost. Danish Travel Accounts and Nostalgic Encounters with 19th Century Greece in Transition
19:00Dinner for speakers and chairs

Friday 3 September  

Join the meeting on Zoom here

09:00Keynote 3 (Chair: Vinnie Nørskov): 
 Trine Arlund Hass, AU/Oxford: The Rubicon of Stevns: Julius Caesar and King Christian IV of Denmark-Norway in Elverhøi (1828) and Asterix romernes skræk (1972, orig.: Le bouclier Arverne, 1967)
10:45Paper Session 2: Classical Antiquity in Popular Music (Chair: Helen Van Noorden)
Gregory Darwin, Uppsala: Ór na Gréige is stór na hÉigipt: Classical Antiquity in Irish Song Tradition
Christian Thrue Djurslev, AU: Tomyris: A Killer Queen in Mediterranean Metal Music
13:30Paper Session 2: Classical Antiquity in Popular Music (cont.)
Jo Paul, Open U: Amplification, Reverberation, and Distortion: The Curious Story of Pompeii in Popular Music
14:15Paper Session 3: Religion, Mythology, Biography (Chair: Christian Djurslev)
Andrew Faulkner, Waterloo: Between Poetry and Prose: Eudocia’s Martyrdom of Saints Cyprian and Justina
Marianne Pade, AU: The Vernacular Alexander
16:15Keynote 4 (Chair: Vinnie Nørskov)
Toph Marshall, UBC (remote): Hercules and the Incredible Hulk

View full programme in PDF here


Participation and registration

The conference is free of charge and open to all through prior registration by 29 August. The conference will be held in a hybrid format, allowing for either physical or online participation. Online attendees will receive a participation link in due time before the conference. 
Register here by 29 August 2021

Organizing committee

Marianne Pade (Classical Philology), Jens A. Krasilnikoff (History), Jakob Engberg (Church History and Practical Theology), Christian Thrue Djurslev (Classical Philology) , Vinnie Nørskov (The Museum of Ancient Art), Isabelle Torrance (English) and Troels Myrup Kristensen (Classical Archaeology), Aarhus University, Denmark.


The conference is sponsored by the Carlsberg Foundation and the Aarhus University School of Culture and Society.