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Love, Lovesickness, and Melancholia

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    ABSTRACT: Among its multiple sources and literary models, Callimachus' story of Acontius and Cydippe in Aetia 3 draws on three main discourses of desire in order to create a multilayered erotic narrative: literary topoi of erōs in lyric and tragedy, the conventions of erotic binding magic, and medical notions of the diseased and desiring body. This essay explores Callimachus' playful readings of each of these discourses through the lenses of the others, exposing both continuities and contradictions among them. This conscious manipulation of frames of reference then provides a model for the interpretive sophistication that typifies the Hellenistic poet and his muse.
    American Journal of Philology 01/2009; 130(3 (Whole Number 519)):341-365.

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