May 27, 2020


Dr. Ellen A. Lanzano, Professor of English and Chair of the Literature and History Program at Hellenic College, has published a new book, The Harp and the Web: Hellenism in Literature, Selected Adaptations. Examining works published over a span of more than two hundred years, Dr. Lanzano illuminates the powerful influence of Hellenism on British and American writers as far apart in time and worldview as Edgar Allan Poe and John Updike.

As she says in her introduction, “The reach of Greek mythology is infinite in the human sense because myths function as an endlessly variable way to explain the artist’s relation to society, the soul in relation to God, and the individual’s social and moral responsibility–all under an ever-changing lens of perception.”

Dr. Lanzano brings to her latest work decades of scholarship devoted to the study and teaching of British, American, and world literature. The breadth of her interests is reflected in the breadth of the courses she has offered at Hellenic College over more than thirty years, ranging from Shakespeare to Tolstoy. She is the author of an earlier book, Hardy: The Temporal Poetics, and numerous articles on nineteenth-century English and American literature.