Emotion, Restraint, and Community in Ancient Rome / Edition 1

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Classical Culture and Society (Series Editors: Joseph A. Farrell, University of Pennsylvania, and Ian Morris, Stanford University) is a new series from Oxford that emphasizes innovative, imaginative scholarship by leading scholars in the field of ancient culture. Among the topics covered will be the historical and cultural background of Greek and Roman literary texts; the production and reception of cultural artifacts; the economic basis of culture; the history of ideas, values, and concepts; and the relationship between politics and/or social practice and ancient forms of symbolic expression (religion, art, language, and ritual, among others). Interdisciplinary approaches and original, broad-ranging research form the backbone of this series, which will serve classicists as well as appealing to scholars and educated readers in related fields.

Emotion, Restraint, and Community examines the ways in which emotions, and talk about emotions, interacted with the ethics of the Roman upper classes in the late Republic and early Empire. By considering how various Roman forms of fear, dismay, indignation, and revulsion created an economy of displeasure that shaped society in constructive ways, the book casts new light both on the Romans and on cross-cultural understanding of emotions.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Emotion, Restraint, and Community in Ancient Rome is one of those scintillating books that tell us something about both the Romans and ourselves.... [Kaster is] a marvellous scholar at the top of his form."—Times Literary Supplement

"This book is a splendid contribution to a field that has recently burgeoned: the study of the emotions in classical antiquity. Kaster investigates a complex of five interrelated Latin emotion terms: verecundia, pudor, paenitenita, invidia, and fastidium; to the chapters devoted to each of these, he appends an epilogue on integritas. The result is a rich portrait of what these ideas meant to the Romans and how they conditioned their behaviour.... Kaster is an excellent reader, and his elegant interpretations contribute greatly to the value of this gracefully written book."—David Konstan, Journal of Roman Studies

"The importance of Kaster's new book cannot be overstated, both as a study of the Roman ideology of self-restraint in its own right and as a model of careful and intelligent scholarship that builds from ancient evidence. I eagerly awaited its publication...and I am not disappointed."—Susanna Braund, The Classical Review

"A rich, stimulating investigation of a particular set of Roman emotions and of these emotions' interaction with ethics and behavior.... Kaster has been a leading voice in the 'history of emotions' movement."—Bryn Mawr Classical Review

"Emotion, Restraint, and Community is a first-rate and timely book. It makes the clearest case that one is liable to encounter for the social (cognitive) basis of Roman emotions and makes, at the same time, a very strong argument for the continuity of these values throughout Roman pagan experience.... [A] deeply personal and very powerful book."—American Journal of Philology

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780195140781
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press
  • Publication date: 7/21/2005
  • Series: Classical Culture and Society Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 264
  • Product dimensions: 9.20 (w) x 6.30 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Robert A. Kaster is Professor of Classics and Kennedy Foundation Professor of Latin at Princeton University.

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Table of Contents

1. Between Respect and Shame: Verecundia and the Art of Social Worry
2. Fifty Ways to Feel your Pudor
3. The Structure of Paenitentia and the Egoism of Regret
4. Invidia is One Thing, Invidia Quite Another
5. The Dynamics of Fastidium and the Ideology of Disgust
6. Epilogue —Being "Wholly Roman"

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