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Art, Desire and the Body in Ancient Greece
     

Art, Desire and the Body in Ancient Greece

by Andrew Stewart
 

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The body was central to the visual culture of ancient Greece, reflecting an obsession with physical beauty, integrity, dynamism, and power. In this penetrating study, Andrew Stewart analyzes the problem of the Greeks' strange preoccupation with nakedness and sketches how artworks filter our understanding of the subject. Exploring selected constructions of gender,

Overview

The body was central to the visual culture of ancient Greece, reflecting an obsession with physical beauty, integrity, dynamism, and power. In this penetrating study, Andrew Stewart analyzes the problem of the Greeks' strange preoccupation with nakedness and sketches how artworks filter our understanding of the subject. Exploring selected constructions of gender, Stewart investigates the Greek body as a microcosm of society, focusing upon figurations of the Athenian body politic; erotica for men and women; and selected representations of the Other.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
'This sparky survey offers a critical review of the foreignness of Greek art, focusing in particular on its infatuation with the naked human form, which it sets in the context of the latest literary theory … This is a readable and far-reaching book, applying theory in ways that are relevant for all art, and rewarding for novice and expert alike.' Museums and Galleries Magazine

'… a valuable study - and one which combines a mass of dependable information with a central provocative thesis'. Apollo

'… succeeds in 'making this art seem strange', that is, in helping us to see these objects as they might originally have been seen'. The Art Newspaper

'…Stewart's book is at once readable and rich in new ideas, the most important contribution to the study of both sexuality and art in the ancient world for some time.' London Review of Books.

'Stewart provides an art history of classical eroticism and self-display that at last matches the sophisticated level of literary studies in this area.' Greece and Rome

'The combination of interesting text and plentiful illustrations … would make this a desirable aquisition for any library.' Emma J. Stafford, JACT

'What, for me, makes Stewart a truly great art historian is that, unlike too many in his field, he can and does write as a historian tout court, always alert to the politics, economics and civic nuances that form the supporting (or occasionally destructive) matrix for art, and much of the time using visual evidence just as he might use texts or inscriptions: to plot social change.' Peter Green, The Times Literary Supplement

'Stewart, obviously a good and enthusiastic teacher, has produced a clear and well-written account of a subject that has become quite unnecessarily obscured.' Art Book Review Quarterly

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780521456807
Publisher:
Cambridge University Press
Publication date:
08/28/1998
Pages:
288
Product dimensions:
7.99(w) x 9.96(h) x 0.75(d)

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