Foreign Languages & Literatures ETDs

Publication Date



When considering the reception of Icarus, scholars traditionally have not taken into account the focalizing character. In this thesis I argue that there are two divergent threads of reception for the Icarus myth, stemming from the versions in Ovids Ars Amatoria and Metamorphoses and in Horace's Odes. I demonstrate that the manner in which each author employs Icarus — whether he is the object of focalization or the subject of focalization — and the manner in which each author employs the concept of audacia ('daring') and makes use of sailing metaphors constitute distinct reception threads. I then trace these threads of reception through a selection of poetry, visual art, and music from the Early Modern era to the twenty-first century, and conclude that the narratological and linguistic nuances used by Ovid and Horace are traceable in both literature and art, and that each reception is responding to one ancient telling more than the other.


Icarus, Ovid, Horace, Focalization

Document Type




Degree Name

Comparative Literature and Cultural Studies

Level of Degree


Department Name

Department of Foreign Languages and Literatures

First Advisor

Cyrino, Monica S.

First Committee Member (Chair)

Garcia, Lorenzo F. Jr

Second Committee Member

Nocentelli, Carmen