Metaphors of the body form an important feature of Petronius' Satyricon. This book claims that the text can be read as a unified whole rather than as episodic jumble, despite its fragmentation. Presented as disturbing as well as comic, intricately structured as well as chaotic, the study asserts that the Satyricon's imagery constantly mirrors apparent paradoxes. Thus corporeality is explored as a metaphor rather than just as an index of the "low" genre of the novel.
'… succeeds in drawing from a wide range of both primary source material and recent secondary scholarship in its fashioning of an innovative critical interpretation of the Petronian text … Rimell is in full command of both her subject matter and her thesis.' Journal of the Classical Association of Canada
Victoria Rimell is Associate Professor in the Department of Greek and Latin Philology at the University of Rome, La Sapieza. She has published Petronius and the Anatomy of Fiction (2002), Ovid's Lovers (2006) and Martial's Rome (2008), and has also contributed to The Cambridge Companion to Roman Satire (edited by Kirk Freudenberg, 2005) and Ordering Knowledge in the Roman Empire (edited by Jason Konig and Tim Whitmarsh, 2007).
Acknowledgements; List of abbreviations; Introduction: corporealities; 1. Rhetorical red herrings; 2. Behind the scenes; 3. The beast within; 4. From the horse's mouth; 5. Bella intestina; 6. Regurgitating Polyphemus; 7. Scars of knowledge; 8. How to eat Virgil; 9. Ghost stories; 10. Decomposing rhythms; 11. Conclusion: licence and labyrinths; Appendices; Bibliography; Index of passages discussed; Index of subjects.