Edited by Paul Dilley
This volume of Classics@, now available on the CHS website, aims to explore and analyze how the present digital turn enables a renewed theoretical engagement with multimodal ancient literacies. Cultural transmission in Antiquity was primarily oral, supplemented by images and texts. Nevertheless, Classicists first employed the term “literacy” in the singular, according to its 19th-century definition: the ability to read and write texts. But since the 2000s, the plural form has gained currency, notably in Johnson and Parker’s collection of essays, Ancient Literacies, which explores literacy from the perspective of “text-oriented events embedded in particular sociocultural contexts.” Different settings, kinds, and uses of literacies emerge, often reflecting differing specializations, competencies, and social hierarchies. In the past several decades, new digital tools and expanding digital culture have provided additional opportunities to explore and theorize ancient literacies.