Joseph B. Solodow

Lecturer, Department of Classics

Joseph Solodow was educated at Columbia and Harvard. He is CSU Professor Emeritus of World Languages and Literatures at Southern Connecticut State University, where he taught Spanish and Spanish-American literature in addition to Latin.

In 1980–81 he held a Rome Prize Fellowship at the American Academy in Rome. Since becoming associated with the Yale Department of Classics in 1985, he has given a number of courses, such as the history of Latin literature, Virgil, Ovid, elegiac poetry, images of early Rome in Latin literature, Roman dining, Roman friendship, Roman myth and pastoral, and Latin prose composition.

His research interests lie in Latin literature and philology and in ancient historiography — more particularly in Catullus, the Augustan poets and Livy, Latin prose style, and the history of the language, all the way to its Romance descendants. He considers his forte to be the use of philology as a tool of literary criticism. His teaching, which ranges more widely, includes western literature read in translation.

His major publications are The Latin Particle Quidem and The World of Ovid's Metamorphoses. Cato the Elder, Catullus, the Eclogues, the Ars Amatoria, Livy, and Castiglione have figured as the subjects of articles. The Modern Language Association awarded the Scaglione Translation Prize to his rendering of G. B. Conte's history of Latin literature into English. His latest book, Latin Alive: The Survival of Latin in English and the Romance Languages was published in 2010. At the moment he is preparing a literary commentary on Livy XXI.

featured Courses This Year

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Latin 411

Early Rome: Aeneas to Romulus

Fall, 2014, Tu/Th 11:30–12:45

How did the Romans imagine the foundings of their nation and their city? These were events to which they attached the highest importance, yet about which they possessed only a mass of unreliable legends, and those often politically inflected. Each reading will be examined from two points of view: the image of early Rome that the text projects, and the relations between that image and the text’s wider concerns, which are contemporary rather than antiquarian.

The readings will include selections from: Virgil, Aeneid VIII; Livy, Ab Urbe Condita I; Ovid, Ars Amatoria I, Fasti IV, Metamorphoses XIII–XIV; Origo Gentis Romanae.

This is an L5 course, which satisfies the language requirement. It also serves as a bridge to the other 400-level courses.

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Contact details

201 Phelps Hall


Phone (203) 432-0977

Fax (203) 432-1079

joseph.solodow@yale.edu