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IMC 2023: Sessions

Session 808: Taste and Disgust in Late Antiquity, IV: Social Status

Tuesday 4 July 2023, 16.30-18.00

Sponsor:Postgraduate & Early-Career Late Antiquity Network
Organiser:Henry Anderson, Department of Classics & Ancient History, University of Exeter
Moderator/Chair:Nicola Ernst, School of Historical & Philosophical Inquiry, University of Queensland
Paper 808-aPer manum mediatoris: Taste and Discernment in Documentary Shorthand
(Language: English)
Ella Kirsh, Department of Classics, Brown University
Index terms: Daily Life, Literacy and Orality, Mentalities, Social History
Paper 808-b'You will find all pleasures and tastes in this book': Influencing Aristocratic Culture in Quodvultdeus of Carthage's Book of the Promises and Predictions of God
(Language: English)
James Duncan, Department of History, University of Liverpool
Index terms: Biblical Studies, Ecclesiastical History, Mentalities, Religious Life
Paper 808-cPublic Disgust, Heresy, and Theodosian Court Politics
(Language: English)
Henry Anderson, Department of Classics & Ancient History, University of Exeter
Index terms: Law, Political Thought, Religious Life

This session seeks to discuss how taste and disgust interacted in regard to the social status of individuals in Late Antiquity. The first paper (Kirsh) argues that previously undeciphered shorthand subscriptions on papyrus contracts reveal the social and cultural tastes of non-elite secretaries. The second paper (Duncan) examines how Quodvultdeus, following the examples of Basil of Caesarea and Augustine, sought to influence and Christianise the cultural tastes of the members of aristocratic social circles in North Africa. The third paper (Anderson) analyses how the disgust towards socially marginalised groups such as heretics trumpeted by early 5th-century imperial governments was often tempered with a pragmatism that saw both heretics and pagans reach high office.