Skip header navigation

Conference Paper

Claiming the Classical: The Greco-Roman World in Contemporary Political Discourse

Mac Sweeney N, Agbamu S, Andújar R, Okyere Asante M, Bastos Marques J, Bernard G, Bonacchi C, Dozier C, Duru G, Goff B, Futo Kennedy R, Koparal E, Krsmanovic D, McCoskey D & Morley N (2019) Claiming the Classical: The Greco-Roman World in Contemporary Political Discourse., 01.11.2018. Council of University Classical Departments Bulletin, (48).

First paragraph: Amidst the shifting political discourses of the twenty-first century, Greco-Roman or ‘classical’ antiquity has emerged as a recurring theme. From North American white supremacists adopting Spartan ‘lambda’ symbols to the Chinese government’s discussion of the ‘Tacitus trap’; and from the Latin names given to EU immigration policies to the satirical critique of authority in South Africa, references to the Greco-Roman world are currently made by actors from across the political spectrum and in many different parts of the world. While excellent research has been done on individual examples, the full picture remains largely obscure. Why does classical antiquity still appeal to so many politicians and activists in the twenty-first century? Does the classical world have the same political associations across national and/or continental borders? And how are the classics used differently in different political contexts?

Additional co-authors: Julia Müller, Jan Nelis, Anne-Sophie Noel, Grant Parker, Konstantinos Poulis, Catherine Psilakis, Helen Roche, Elizabeth Sawyer, Netta Schramm, Michael Scott

Council of University Classical Departments Bulletin, Issue 48

Author(s)Mac Sweeney, Naoíse; Agbamu, Samuel; Andújar, Rosa; Okyere Asante, Michael; Bastos Marques, Juliana; Bernard, Gwladys; Bonacchi, Chiara; Dozier, Curtis; Duru, Güneş; Goff, Barbara; Futo Kennedy, Rebecca; Koparal, Elif; Krsmanovic, Damjan; McCoskey, Denise; Morley, Neville
FundersThe British Academy
Publication date02/06/2019
Date accepted by journal01/06/2019
Publisher URL…he-Classical.pdf
Scroll back to the top