Katherine Dennis
Katherine Dennis

Katherine Dennis

Profile

I received my bachelor’s degree in English and Classics from Williams College (magna cum laude, 2015) and went on to read for an MSt in Greek and Latin Languages and Literature at University College, Oxford (2016), before arriving at Princeton to begin my PhD in fall 2016.

Both my undergraduate thesis and masters dissertation have focused on comparing the work of Horace and Catullus: in the former, focusing on erotic poetry, I considered the poets’ engagement with their Greek lyric and elegiac predecessors and the ways in which they constructed personae in order to understand each poet’s claim to primacy in composing Latin lyric; in the later, focusing on iambic and encomiastic poetry, I compared each poet’s utilization of the concepts of purity and pollution (in a both literal and metapoetic sense) in order to say something about the poets’ social and generic contexts.

Aside from my continued interest in Horace and Catullus, I’ve also worked on archaic Greek lyric and Hellenistic poetry. In particular, I’m interested in the creation of poetic personae, innovations in the narrative framing of poetry, and the blurred boundaries between fact and fiction. Much of my work has focused on gender and sexuality as a locus for interpreting poetry, and I look forward to working more on the ways in which our understanding of ancient poetry has been shaped by scholarship that is far from objective or transparent, instead reflecting the contexts, motivations, and assumptions of its authors.

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