Fashioning the Feminine in the Greek Novel

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Overview

The Greek novel occupies a special place in the debate on gender in antiquity, forcing us to ask why the female protagonists are such strong and positive characters. This book rejects the hypothesis of a largely female readership, and also sees a problem in ascribing this pattern to the reflection of a blanket improvement in the status of women. Katharine Haynes shows that the strong heroines are best understood not as an undistorted mirror on an improved social reality, but as a type of 'constructed feminine'. ...
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Fashioning the Feminine in the Greek Novel

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Overview

The Greek novel occupies a special place in the debate on gender in antiquity, forcing us to ask why the female protagonists are such strong and positive characters. This book rejects the hypothesis of a largely female readership, and also sees a problem in ascribing this pattern to the reflection of a blanket improvement in the status of women. Katharine Haynes shows that the strong heroines are best understood not as an undistorted mirror on an improved social reality, but as a type of 'constructed feminine'. Through reference to earlier works of Greek literature, such as Euripides and Aristophanes and early Christian texts, the 'use of the feminine' in the novel is put into its wider context, situating the heroines within a tradition of using the female image to say something about the male self and his aspirations. The heroines are studied in detail, with a focus on how we can approach and understand their combination of conventional with unconventional behaviours. Their male counterparts, rather than being 'failed heroes', are seen as promoting a particularly provocative brand of passive masculinity. A full examination of subsidiary male and female characters 'frames' the protagonists' portrayal and acts as a guide to the extent to which they subvert traditional gender norms. Finally, a study of novelistic marriage examines how the Greek elite has reworked the emblem of dynastic continuity so dear to the Imperial family. By allowing the female to dominate the relationship, and invert the balance of power, this image has been redeployed in a challenging way. The book offers a wealth of fascinating insights into the kaleidoscopic world of male and female in the Greek novel, which will inform and illuminate the reader whatever the text being studied. The related issues of ethnicity and self-definition also explored will be of interest for all those working on ancient fiction or the culture of the Second Sophistic.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780415262101
  • Publisher: Taylor & Francis
  • Publication date: 3/28/2003
  • Edition description: First Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 224
  • Product dimensions: 6.10 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Table of Contents

Preface
1 Reading the feminine 1
2 Contextualising the feminine 18
3 Heroines 44
4 Heroes 81
5 Minor female characters 101
6 Minor male characters 137
7 Telos 156
Notes 163
Bibliography 188
Index 206
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  • Posted July 7, 2014

    Lovely...! beautiful.....!.... Just enjoy it.....! 

    Lovely...! beautiful.....!.... Just enjoy it.....! 

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