Self-representation tends to be something that we take for granted in today's modern world: from 'selfies' on instagram, to lifestyle blogs on the internet, to ‘kiss and tell’ celebrity exposés and published memoirs. What forms did inwardness, selfhood and self-representation take in Late Antiquity? This module examines how elite and non-elite individuals understood and represented 'the self ' between the fourth and early sixth centuries AD, with a focus on early Christian holy lives. We will explore 'the first introspective autobiography in Western letters': Augustine of Hippo's Confessions, as well as other less well-known first-person narratives / reported experiences (all in English translation), alongside visual and material evidence where relevant.
The chance to complete a long-format essay (5,000 words), thus improving your ability to develop, plan and write-up your own research, is a special feature of this module.