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Collective Speech and Silence in the Argonautica of Apollonius and Valerius

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Chapter Summary

The scope of Apollonius Rhodius' influence on Valerius Flaccus' Argonautica regarding its subject matter, character portrayal, and narrative technique has been scrutinized in many recent studies. This chapter analyzes the key similarities and differences in the use of collective and representative speeches and collective "conversational silence" in both Argonautic poems. The collective speeches are divided into primary (the protagonists) and secondary (other collectives) speeches to facilitate the discussion and avoid unnecessary repetition. A collective speech act is defined as "the coordinated effort of more than one individual in forming utterances in the same rule-governed form of behavior as the speech acts of individuals. The group speech act differs from the individual's monologic utterance only in that its meaning and intention originate in multiple persons". Apollonius employs three primary and three secondary collective speeches, while Valerius' Argonautica includes three secondary, and four primary collective speeches.

Keywords: Apollonius Rhodius; collective conversational silence; collective speech; Valerius Flaccus



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