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1. Seneca and the Letter Form
About this Lecture
In this module, we provide a brief overview of Seneca’s life and literary output, before focusing in more detail on the letter as a literary form. In particular, we think about other famous letter collections – whether political (e.g. Cicero, Pliny), poetic (e.g. Ovid) or philosophical (e.g. Epicurus) – as well as some of the opportunities afforded by the letter form.
In this course, Dr Liz Gloyn (Royal Holloway, University of London) explores Seneca’s Epistulae Morales. We begin by providing a brief overview of Seneca’s life and literary output, before focusing in more detail on the letter as a literary form. In each of the five modules that follow, we focus on a single letter, providing close-reading, drawing out the key themes, and making links to Stoic philosophy more generally – including the Stoic theory of ‘indifferents’, the theory of the passions (or pathē), Stoic moral psychology, and Stoic views on the immortality of the soul.
Dr Liz Gloyn is Senior Lecturer in the Department of Classics at Royal Holloway, University of London. Her research focuses on the intersections between Latin literature, ancient philosophy and gender studies, with a particular focus on Seneca the Younger and his approach to Stoicism and family. Her previous publications include The Ethics of the Family in Seneca (2017), while her current book project explores the way that contemporary popular culture imagines and uses classical monsters, and will be published 2019.
Cite this Lecture
Gloyn, L. (2018, August 15). Seneca: Letters - Seneca and the Letter Form [Video]. MASSOLIT. https://massolit.io/courses/seneca-letters-liz-gloyn/seneca-and-the-letter-form-ab3a023c-73e0-4b47-bb20-6d08a860539d
Gloyn, L. "Seneca: Letters – Seneca and the Letter Form." MASSOLIT, uploaded by MASSOLIT, 15 Aug 2018, https://massolit.io/courses/seneca-letters-liz-gloyn/seneca-and-the-letter-form-ab3a023c-73e0-4b47-bb20-6d08a860539d