This fall on November 7, 2018, the Julius Fund Lecture in Ancient Art: Destruction and Defiance in Late Republican Rome given by Penelope Davies of University of Texas at Austin will take place in the CMA Recital Hall.
With a small overview of the lecture: As political unrest seethed in late Republican Rome, a series of violent acts were perpetrated against well-known public and private buildings, public and private, by the people citizens and their elected representatives, the tribunes of the plebs. On the rare occasions when scholars mention these acts, they tend to be treated them as random, isolated acts of vandalism; conspicuously missing is any accounting for them in commentaries on Rome’s built environment. This lecture assesses the acts against the broad spectrum of political activism over the ages, and in the narrower context of contemporaneous politics, when strict, exclusionary norms governed the sponsorship of public architecture. The lecture argues that they these acts were, in fact, deliberate, ideologically -driven attempts to defy and circumvent a language of power established by the dominant class.
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