Greek Literature and the Roman Empire: The Politics of Imitation

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Greek Literature and the Roman Empire uses up-to-date literary and cultural theory to make a major and original contribution to the appreciation of Greek literature written under the Roman Empire during the second century CE (the so-called 'Second Sophistic'). The central preoccupations of this literature, particularly mimesis and paideia, constitute a crucial test-site for the exploration and dissemination of Greek identity during the period. Focusing upon a series of key texts by important authors (including Dio Chrysostom, Plutarch, Philostratus, Lucian, Favorinus, and the novelists), Whitmarsh argues that the recurrent narratives that stage Greekness as 'culture' and Romanness as 'power' are not innocent reflections of social realities, but self-interested and often playful 'performances' of cultural identity. Their authors' rich and complex engagement with the literary past articulates an ingenious and sophisticated response to their present socio-political circumstances. This book is written for those interested in the history of identity and imperialism as well as scholars as classical literature and society. All Greek and Latin is translated.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Tim Whitmarsh is possibly the most interesting and sophisticated critic writing on Greek Imperial literature these days, and this important, groundbreaking new book should solidify this reputation. The breadth, subtlety, and richness of writing on display is remarkable; if you want to understand why the Second Sophistic is undergoing such a resurgence in Classics, to grasp what is at stake in the literature and why it is so exciting, and can only read one book on the topic, this should be it."—Bryn Mawr Classical Review

"This book is extremely stimulating.... Whitmarsh's work manifests an enviable familiarity with the most recent bibliography and an extremely acute critical eye, and it will serve as a valuable guide to the slipperiness of texts written in an age of extraordinary literary self-consciousness."—Journal of Hellenic Studies

"An important contribution to the study of the so-called 'Second Sophistic' period.... Whitmarsh offers illuminating and provocative readings of texts both familiar and less known."—Choice

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780199271375
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
  • Publication date: 3/28/2004
  • Pages: 392
  • Product dimensions: 8.40 (w) x 5.40 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Tim Whitmarsh is Reader in Greek Literature, Exeter University.

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Table of Contents

Pt. 1 The Politics of Imitation
1 Repetition: The Crisis of Posterity 41
2 Education: Strategies of Self-Making 90
Pt. 2 Greece and Rome
3 Rome Uncivilized: Exile and the Kingdom 133
4 Civilizing Rome: Greek Pedagogy and the Roman Emperor 181
5 Satirizing Rome: Lucian 247
Conclusion 295
App. 1 Translation of Favorinus, On Exile (P. Vat. 11) 302
App. 2 The Performative Context of Dio's Kingship orations 325
References 366
Index of Greek Words 371
General Index 372
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  • Posted July 7, 2014

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

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

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