Irene Peirano Garrison

Irene Peirano Garrison's picture
Associate Professor, Director of Graduate Studies in Classics
307a Phelps Hall

Irene Peirano Garrison studied at Oriel College, Oxford (B.A. Hons. Literae Humaniores 2002) and Harvard University (Ph.D. Classical Philology 2007). Her main research interests are Latin poetry, Literary Criticism and Rhetorical Theory in Antiquity, Reception Theory and Gender.

LOA Spring 2018

She works on Roman poetry and its relation to rhetoric and literary criticism, both ancient and modern. She is especially interested in ancient strategies of literary reception, in notions of authorship in antiquity and in ancient editorial and scholarly practices. Her first book — The Rhetoric of the Roman Fake: Latin Pseudepigrapha in context (Cambridge University Press, 2012) — sets authorial and chronological fictions in the context of the practices of impersonation and role-play in the literary culture of the Imperial period, and explores these works as part of the early reception history of canonical authors such as Virgil, Tibullus and Ovid.

Her current book project — Persuasion, Rhetoric and Roman Poetry (under contract, Cambridge University Press) — investigates the boundaries between rhetoric and poetry in the Imperial period. Moving away from the traditional focus on cataloguing “rhetorical” elements in poetic texts, the book explores the construction of poetry and the poetic in texts such as Seneca the Elder’s Controuersiae and Suasoriae and Quintilian’s Institutio Oratoria and select responses to these narratives in Roman poetry, and investigates the figure of Vergilius orator in Macrobius, Florus, Servius and Tiberius Claudius Donatus. Other ongoing research projects include work on textual authenticity in Greece and Rome and the search for the original in the history of philology, on the ethics of continuation in Roman literature, and a paper on pseudepigrapha and pseudepigraphy in Greco-Roman, Jewish and Christian antiquity co-authored with Hindy Najman.


Latin language and literature

Areas of Research

Latin poetry, Literary Criticism and Rhetorical Theory in Antiquity, History of Authorship, Reception Theory and Gender Studies

Selected Publications

  • “Between biography and commentary: the ancient horizon of expectations of VSD”, invited paper in P. Hardie and A. Powell (eds.), The Ancient Lives of Vergil. The Classical Press of Wales. Forthcoming.
  • “The tomb of Virgil: between text, memory and site”, invited paper in N. Goldschmidt and B. Graziosi (eds.), Tombs of the Ancient Poets: Between Text and Material Culture. Oxford University Press. Forthcoming.
  • “Newly written buds: Archaic and Classical Pseudepigrapha in Meleager’s Garland”, in E. Bakker (ed.), Authorship, Authority, and Authenticity in Archaic and Classical Greek Song. Proceedings of the Conference of the Network for the Study of Archaic and Classical Greek Song, 222-238. Leiden: Brill, 2017.
  • Sphragis: Paratextual autobiographies”, in Paratextuality and the Reader in Roman Literature and Culture, L. Jansen (ed.), 224-42. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2014. 
  • NON SUBRIPIENDI CAUSA SED PALAM MUTUANDI: Intertextuality and literary deviancy between law, rhetoric and literature in Roman Imperial culture”, in Intertextuality and its Discontents. Y. Baraz and C. van den Berg (eds.). Special issue of American Journal of Philology 134 (2013), 83-100.
  • Ille ego qui quondam: on authorial (an)onymity”, in The Author’s Voice in Classical Antiquity, J. Hill and A. Marmodoro (eds.), 251-85. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013.
  • “Authenticity as an aesthetic concept: ancient and modern reflections”, in Aesthetic Value in Classical Antiquity, Penn-Leiden Colloquium on ancient values (VI), R. Rosen and I. Sluiter (eds.), 215-42. Leiden: Brill, 2012.