Echoing Narratives: Studies of Intertextuality in Greek and Roman Prose Fictionby Konstantin Doulamis
Intertextuality has been recognised as an important feature of ancient prose fiction and yet it has only received sporadic attention in modern scholarship, despite the recent explosion of interest in the ancient novels. This volume is intended to make a contribution towards filling this gap by drawing attention to, and throwing fresh light on, the presence in ancient Greek and Roman narratives of earlier literary echoes. While one volume is by no means sufficient to remedy the problem of the relative lack of scholarship on the topic, nevertheless it is hoped that the present collection will create scope for debate and will generate greater scholarly interest in this area. Most of the articles collected here originated in the colloquium 'The Ancient Novel and its Reception of Earlier Literature', which was held at University College Cork in August 2007. They investigate the interconnection between Graeco-Roman narratives and earlier or contemporary works, and consider ways in which intertextual exploration is invited from the readers of these texts. What prompts the reader to associate a passage with an earlier text? What triggers in a text the evocation of motifs from antecedent literature? How might we interpret an identified allusion? In what ways can intertextuality function as a device of characterisation? These are among the questions explored by the chapters in this volume, which concentrate on the 'canonical' Greek romances and the Roman novels but also cover other novel-like works, such as the Alexander Romance and Alexander's Letter to Aristotle About India, and the Story of Apollonius King of Tyre.
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