"This book should not be overlooked by scholars as but a students' companion, for even those familiar with Caesar's techniques will find force and insight in the lucid arguments of Batstone/Damon. Their scholarly touch is light, but the quality of their argumentation is very high. This book deserves a wide readership.... They have not only written a book that will undoubtedly intensify students' literary interest in this rich historical text, but they have also provided teachers and scholars a refreshing and stimulating starting point for rethinking Caesar's successes and failures. The authors are thoughtfully experienced in the ways of Roman historiography, and they have combined to write a powerful book in modest form."Bryn Mawr Classical Review
Caesar's Civil Warby William W. Batstone
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Caesar's Civil War, the story of the general's contest with the Pompeian party through nineteen months of civil war, is an unfinished masterpiece. The author abandoned it when he found himself living in a different world than that which saw its commencement. The narrative ends after Pompey's death, amidst the preliminaries to the Alexandrian war that initiated the next phase of the fight for primacy of Rome. The work shows the brilliance for which Caesar's oratory, like his generalship, was known: it was a political judgment, not a literary one, that relegated the Civil War to the file drawer. The primary topics covered in this introductory book are the generic background of Caesar's commentarii or notebooks; his selection of material; the contemporary context of the civil war; the literary techniques that carry the story; and the work's characterization and structure. General aids to the reader include maps to accompany the particular narrative events discussed, a timeline of Caesar's life and the civil war, explanations of technical terms of Roman history, and a section on Roman names and prominent persons of Caesar's time.
Meet the Author
William W. Batstone is Associate Professor of Greek and Latin at Ohio State University. Cynthia Damon is Professor of Classics at Amherst College.
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