Petronius and the Anatomy of Fiction

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Overview

Petronius' Satyricon, long regarded as the first novel of the western tradition, has always sparked controversy. This innovative reading of the surviving portions of the work shows how the Satyricon fuses the anarchic and the classic, the comic and the disturbing, and presents readers with a labyrinth of narratorial viewpoints. Victoria Rimell argues that the surviving fragments are connected by an imagery of disintegration, focused on a pervasive Neronian metaphor of the literary text as a human or animal body. Throughout, she discusses the limits of dominant twentieth-century views of the Satyricon as bawdy pantomime, and challenges prevailing restrictions of Petronian corporeality to material or non-metaphorical realms. This 'novel' emerges as both very Roman and very satirical in its 'intestinal' view of reality.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
'... 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
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780521815864
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 12/1/2002
  • Pages: 250
  • Lexile: 1730L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 5.98 (w) x 8.98 (h) x 0.83 (d)

Meet the Author

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).

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
List of abbreviations
Introduction: Corporealities 1
1 Rhetorical red herrings 18
2 Behind the scenes 32
3 The beast within 49
4 From the horse's mouth 60
5 Bella intestina 77
6 Regurgitating Polyphemus 98
7 Scars of knowledge 113
8 How to eat Virgil 123
9 Ghost stories 140
10 Decomposing rhythms 159
Conclusion: Licence and labyrinths 176
App. I The use of fundere and cognates in the Satyricon 203
App. II The occurrence of fortuna or Fortuna in the Satyricon 206
App. III Aen. 4.39 at Sat. 112: nec venit in mentem, quorum consderis arvis? 208
Bibliography 210
Index of passages discussed 227
Index of subjects 237
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