The paper explores the perturbation of the dynamics of gift and debt in Seneca’s Troades, in the light of the ethical patterns set out in De beneficiis. In this tragedy, Seneca re-writes the reciprocity relationship between Achilles and the Greeks, according to the analogical model of the debt. In fact, Achilles’ ghost accuses the Achaeans of stealing honores due to his Manes, proving their ingratitude. As praemium, the hero requires the sacrifice of Polyxena, which represents a reversal of the ritual practices of the gifts to the dead. In order to grasp the anthropological meaning of this reading, we intend to perform a critical comparison between the representation of the cultual practice by which the Romans honoured their dead, useful to appease (placare) the shadows and to ensure their exclusion from the living world (Ov., Fasti 2, 533-56; 569-70), and the particular inferiae described in Troades. Here, Seneca uses the juxtaposition of the wedding ritual and the cult of the dead – which the Romans felt as extremely perturbing, enough to forbid it (Ov., Fasti 2, 557-62 and Fasti 5, 485-90) – in order to emphasize the impiety claimed by Achilles, which implies the reversal of the positive category of tumulo donum.
|Titolo della pubblicazione ospite||Atti del III Seminario nazionale per dottorandi e dottori di ricerca in studi latini. Roma, 20 novembre 2015 - Università degli Studi "La Sapienza"|
|Numero di pagine||33|
|Stato di pubblicazione||Published - 2017|