Epic and Empire: Politics and Generic Form from Virgil to Milton / Edition 1

Epic and Empire: Politics and Generic Form from Virgil to Milton / Edition 1

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by David Quint
     
 

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ISBN-10: 0691015201

ISBN-13: 9780691015200

Pub. Date: 01/25/1993

Publisher: Princeton University Press

Alexander the Great, according to Plutarch, carried on his campaigns a copy of the Iliad, kept alongside a dagger; on a more pronounced ideological level, ancient Romans looked to the Aeneid as an argument for imperialism. In this major reinterpretation of epic poetry beginning with Virgil, David Quint explores the political context and meanings of

Overview

Alexander the Great, according to Plutarch, carried on his campaigns a copy of the Iliad, kept alongside a dagger; on a more pronounced ideological level, ancient Romans looked to the Aeneid as an argument for imperialism. In this major reinterpretation of epic poetry beginning with Virgil, David Quint explores the political context and meanings of key works in Western literature. He divides the history of the genre into two political traditions: the Virgilian epics of conquest and empire that take the victors' side (the Aeneid itself, Camoes's Lusíadas, Tasso's Gerusalemme liberata) and the countervailing epic of the defeated and of republican liberty (Lucan's Pharsalia, Ercilla's Araucana, and d'Aubigné's Les tragiques). These traditions produce opposing ideas of historical narrative: a linear, teleological narrative that belongs to the imperial conquerors, and an episodic and open-ended narrative identified with "romance," the story told of and by the defeated.

Quint situates Paradise Lost and Paradise Regained within these rival traditions. He extends his political analysis to the scholarly revival of medieval epic in the late eighteenth and nineteenth centuries and to Sergei Eisenstein's epic film, Alexander Nevsky. Attending both to the topical contexts of individual poems and to the larger historical development of the epic genre, Epic and Empire provides new models for exploring the relationship between ideology and literary form.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780691015200
Publisher:
Princeton University Press
Publication date:
01/25/1993
Series:
Literature in History Series
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
448
Product dimensions:
5.97(w) x 9.18(h) x 0.91(d)

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
Introduction3
Pt. 1Epic and the Winners19
1Epic and Empire: Versions of Actium21
2Repetition and Ideology in the Aeneid50
Pt. 2Epic and the Losers97
3The Epic Curse and Camoes' Adamastor99
4Epics of the Defeated: The Other Tradition of Lucan, Ercilla, and d'Aubigne131
Pt. 3Tasso and Milton211
5Political Allegory in the Gerusalemme liberata213
6Tasso, Milton, and the Boat of Romance248
7Paradise Lost and the Fall of the English Commonwealth268
8David's Census: Milton's Politics and Paradise Regained325
Pt. 4A Modern Epilogue341
9Ossian, Medieval "Epic," and Eisenstein's Alexander Nevsky343
Notes to the Chapters369
Index427

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Epic and Empire: Politics and Generic Form from Virgil to Milton 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Manirul More than 1 year ago
Lovely...! beautiful.....!.... Just enjoy it.....!