Polytheisms and Cosmologies

Comparative perspectives on ancient Greece and contemporary Nuna societies (Burkina Faso, West Africa)

with Cléo Carastro (École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales)

Date: Wednesday, May 5, 2021
Time: 1:00pm EDT

Part of the Comparatism Seminar Series, this talk will attempt both to raise some methodological issues on comparatist enquiries involving ancient and contemporary societies, and to re-think two categories in the study of religion. Focusing on materials from ancient Greece and contemporary African societies (Nuna, Burkina Faso), it aims to shed a new light on the ritual strategies that make social ties stronger through the invisible world.

Cléo Carastro is maîtresse de conférences at the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales (EHESS), where she holds the chair of Anthropology and Classics. She is the author of La cité des mages. Penser la magie en Grèce ancienne and the editor of a collective comparatist research on colors and visual culture (L’antiquité en couleurs: catégories, pratiques, représentations, 2009). Former editor-in-chief of the journal L’Homme. Revue française d’anthropologie, she founded the PRI (Program of Interdisciplinary Research) of the EHESS “Practicing Comparatism: Fieldworks, Texts, Artifacts” and has lead pluriannual research programs on Fate and Destiny, and more recently on Epics (with Alban Bensa, Manon Brouillet, and Pierre Judet de La Combe). Her fields of study include anthropology and history of Ancient Greece, religion, ritual writing, medicine, comparative studies of ancient and contemporary societies, historiography, ethnography of ritual practices among the Nuna (Burkina Faso, West Africa), and last but not least, the use of classical texts and artefacts in modern and contemporary visual culture and societies.

The Comparatism Seminar Series is organized by Lisa Raphals (University of California, Riverside and the Center for Hellenic Studies) and hosted by the Center for Hellenic Studies.