Dr Emmanuela Bakola
Leverhulme Early Career Fellow
Address Room B5, Department of Classics
King's College London
London, WC2R 2LS
I am originally Greek and I have been living in London for the last 12 years. In 2006 I completed my doctorate at the Department of Greek and Latin, UCL, and subsequently held a British Academy Postdoctoral Research Fellowship in the same department until 2012 (interrupted by two periods of maternity leave). Since September 2011 I have also been Adjunct Lecturer at the Open University of Cyprus, where I teach a unit on Greek Theatre. I joined the Classics department here at King’s in April 2013.
Greek drama (tragedy, comedy and satyr play)
Greek literature and religion; Greek concepts about the Earth and the natural environment; cultural anthropology, environmental theology and the Classics
Greek stagecraft and dramaturgy
poetics, genre and Greek literary criticism, especially through the lens of Greek comedy; Greek comedy and intertextuality
I have recently been awarded a Leverhulme Early Career Fellowship to pursue my project Aeschylean Tragedy and Early Environmental Discourse. With this project I seek to demonstrate that a rich strand of Greek literature is profoundly preoccupied with humanity's relationship to the Earth and its resources. I focus mainly on the tragedy of Aeschylus (which situates itself in the tradition of Hesiod), and offer a close (re-)reading of the plays by applying an interdisciplinary framework informed by cultural anthropology, environmental philosophy/theology and classical scholarship. I seek to show that the tragedy of Aeschylus explores the relationship of man to the Earth through its imagery, dramaturgy, stage action, use of space and engagement with religion and ritual. Although the relationship of man and Earth has a metaphysical character, in Aeschylus it is mainly reflected upon through economic concepts (production, consumption, waste) and is connected to socio-political issues which in all times are linked to environmental concerns, especially gender, hegemony and justice.
While working on a monograph entitled The Erinyes and the Wealth of the Earth, I am seeking to demonstrate certain core concepts of my project in separate articles: I have recently completed a piece which explores the symbolism of the ‘house’ in the Oresteia in connection to the deep Earth and its productive and destructive powers. This is a symbolism which is shared by many cultures which, like ancient Greece, had (or still have) a profound and direct dependence on the earth and its resources. In another forthcoming piece, which explores the engagement of Cratinus with the Oresteia and the Aeschylean Erinyes in particular, I argue that Aeschylus’ preoccupation with the idea of the Earth was well known to his contemporaries.
Comedy as a source of reception of other poetry was the main focus of my research for several years (and led me to my current project). In 2010 I published a monograph on the major Athenian comic poet and older rival of Aristophanes, Cratinus (Cratinus and the Art of Comedy), a large part of which focused on comedy’s dialogues with other genres. I have also published articles on comedy, archaic lyric and ancient literary criticism, comedy and satyr play, etc. A volume entitled Greek Comedy and the Discourse of Genres, which contains the proceedings of an international conference which I organised with L. Prauscello and M. Telo, is forthcoming with CUP in 2013.
Cratinus and the Art of Comedy, Oxford University Press 2010 (Review: BMCR)
E. Bakola, L. Prauscello and M. Telò (eds.) Greek Comedy and the Discourse of Genres, Cambridge University Press, forthcoming April 2013 (in press)
'The Drunk, the Reformer and the Teacher: Agonistic Poetics and the Construction of Persona in the Comic Poets of the Fifth Century', Cambridge Classical Journal (formerly PCPS) 54 (2008), 1-29
‘Kratinos’, in A. Markantonatos and Th. Pappas, (eds.) A Companion to Attic Comedy, Athens 2011, 33-68
'Old Comedy Disguised as Satyr Play: A New Reading of Cratinus' Dionysalexandros', ZPE 154 (2005) 46-58
'A Missed Joke in Aristophanes' Wasps 1265-74', Classical Quarterly 55 (2005), 609-613
'Crime and Punishment: Cratinus on Aeschylus, on the Metaphysics and on the Politics of Wealth' in Bakola, Prauscello, Telo (eds) Greek Comedy and the Discourse of Genres, forthcoming April 2013.
‘Cratinus’ in Bastianini, G. [et al.] Commentaria et Lexica Graeca in Papyris reperta (CLGP) (forthcoming 2012/3)
Expertise and Engagement
I enjoy teaching on all aspects of Greek literature and culture: since 2006 I have taught several Greek drama modules at UCL, Reading and the Open University of Cyprus, but also other subjects, from Homeric epic to Lucian’s satire, and from Greek myth to the transmission of Greek texts. I am particularly fond of teaching Greek and Latin language, and have done so for over ten years.
My recent experiences at the OU Cyprus have significantly enhanced my use of new technologies and convinced me of their enormous merits for teaching and learning; I would therefore be keen to contribute e-learning components to the departmental teaching activities.
I would be happy to talk about any aspect of Greek literature, and I would be particularly keen to talk in relation to my new project on the Greeks and the environment.
For a few years I was the academic advisor to the annual Greek drama productions of the UCL Department of Greek and Latin at the Bloomsbury theatre, and initiated the highly successful public engagement programme Ancient Plays for Modern Minds. In 2011 I was the Director of the London Summer School in Classics.