Workshop: Multitudo: a multisensory, multilayered and multidirectional approach to classical studies

Saturday 21st November 2015, 9.30am-6pm at Roehampton University

Organisers: Alessandra Abbattista (Roehampton) and Eleanor Betts (OU):

We are pleased to announce that registration for Multitudo is now open. This one-day workshop brings together postgraduate students and early career researchers interested in taking a multidisciplinary approach to sensory studies of Greek and Roman societies. The objective of the workshop is to explore the value of applying sensory approaches to the material and literary evidence of the ancient world, and to illustrate how they complement and/or contradict each other. In particular, the workshop will demonstrate a range of methodologies and approaches which may be applied to different literary and archaeological contexts, with a focus on how empirical sensory data may combine, or at times conflict, with that of ancient sources.

There is no fee for attending the workshop, but all attendants must register. Please do register via The deadline for registration is the 15th of November. We welcome a participative audience and with the support of the Classical Association are pleased to be able to offer a small number of student bursaries to eligible presenters and participants. If you would like to be considered for a bursary, please send a request to Alessandra Abbattista ( or Eleanor Betts (, indicating your status and the cost of your travel and/or accommodation expenses, when you register for the workshop.

We are keen to attract undergraduate, MA and PhD students to the workshop, from Classical Studies and other disciplines, so please advertise it as widely as you can. If using Twitter, please use the hashtag #multitudo15.

The full programme and registration details are available on our website:

See also:—Humanities/Workshop—Multitudo–a-multisensory,-multilayered-and-multidirectional-approach-to-classical-studies/

For further information please do not hesitate to contact us: Alessandra Abbattista ( or Eleanor Betts (


9.30-10 Registration and coffee

10-10.10 Introduction: Alessandra Abbattista & Eleanor Betts

Panel 1: Embodied Performance

Chair: Eleanor Betts


Alessandra Abbattista & Giacomo Savani

“The Multisensory Metamorphosis of a Thracian King”

Metamorphosis – ancient Greek tragedy – funeral mourning – myth of Procne

Fabio Lo Piparo

“Blowing Through the Gorgon Mask: a Reading of the Cassandra Episode in Aeschylus’ Agamemnon

Aeschylus’ Agamemnon – Cassandra – aulos – Gorgon mask – Tony Harrison’s Oresteia 


Helen Slaney

“Kinaesthesia as Methodology”

Dance – sculpture – movement – aesthetics – reception – cognition – enactment – embodiment – haptic – tactility – interactive

Anna Trostnikova

“Multisensory Experience of Audiences at Roman Religious Festivals. Spectators or Participants?”

Theatre – collective experience – ritual vs performance – lex iulia theatralis – crowd behaviour – production of space


11.30-11.40 Coffee


Panel 2: Smell, Taste and Touch

Chair: Giacomo Savani


Catherine Hoggarth

“Crossing the Multisensory Bridge”

bridges – urban – rural – multisensory – multidisciplinary – risk – comparative approaches – value – reconstruction – methodologies

Stuart McKie

“Practical Magic: How, Where and When to Curse a Thief in Roman Britain”

Magic – Roman Britain – curse tablets – ritual – experimental archaeology – movement – gesture


Marta Garcia-Morcillo

“Feeling the Market in Ancient Rome”

Smell – hearing – product recognition – competition – social status – performance – interaction – atmosphere – daily life

Patty Baker

“Tasting Roman Food: Experimental Archaeology”

Taste – senses – reenactment – experimental archaeology – recipes – environmental remains


1.00-1.40 Lunch


Panel 3: Sights and Sounds

Chair: Alessandra Abbattista


Orestis Mitintzis

“Visual Aspects in the Experience of Pilgrimage in the Ancient Greek World”

Pilgrimage – pilgrim – sight – nature – sanctuary – buildings – votives – cult statue – Classical and Hellenistic world

Matteo Olivieri

“The Song of the Maidens of Delos: Homage to the Identities of the Pilgrims of Apollo?”

Delos – sanctuary – religious festival – cult – regional sanctuary – Apollo, Artemis and Leto – Delian Maidens – Homeric hymn to Apollo – choral lyric – mimetic performance – dance – ethnic identity – polis identity – Ionian – Cyclades islands – Aegean sea – Greek language & dialects


Francesca Berlinzani

“An Acoustic Problem of the Ps. Aristot. ΠΕΡΙ ΦΩΝΗΣ. Between Auditive and Visuospatial Perception”

Ancient acoustics – Aristotle – formants – echo – resonance – sound perception

Jeff Veitch

“Hearing Architecture: Sound Samples in Architectural Context”

aural architecture – acoustics – sound perception – Roman buildings – sound samples


Jasmine Parker & Eleanor Betts

“A Phenomenology of Visual Perception”


3.30-3.40 Coffee


Panel 4: Theorising the Senses

Chair: Jeff Veitch


John Harrison

“The Stourhead Temple of the Nymph: a Multisensory Experience”

Grotto – Stourhead – nymphaeum – multisensory – synaesthesia – kinaesthesia – vision – audition – olfaction – thermoception

Hannah Platts

“Sensing and Feeling at Home: Multisensory Approaches to the Roman Domestic Realm”

Multisensory – insula – domestic – home – status – identity (belonging) – Roman


Kelli Rudolph

“Method and Theory in Ancient Sensory Studies”

Ancient methodologies: analogy – polarity – inference – theoretical positions: status of qualities – the relations between contraries – notions of elements; understanding of ancient approaches to study of the senses

Emma-Jayne Graham

“Objective Senses and Sensory Objectives in the Graeco-Roman World”

Objective/subjective senses – texts/materials – metaphor/experience – perception/description

5.00-5.20 Closing discussion

5.20-6.00 Drinks reception


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