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Poetry and Its Public in Ancient Greece

From Homer to the Fifth Century

Bruno Gentili
translated, with an introduction, by A. Thomas Cole

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Brilliantly applying insights and methodologies from anthropology, literary theory, and the social sciences to the historical study of archaic lyric, Poetry and Its Public in Ancient Greece, winner of Italy's prestigious Viareggio Prize, develops a new Picture of the literary history of Greece.

An essentially practical art, ancient Greek poetry was clocely linked to the realities of social and political life and to the actual behavior of individuals within a community. Its mythological content was didactic and pedagogical. But Greek poetry differs radically from modern forms in its mode of...

Brilliantly applying insights and methodologies from anthropology, literary theory, and the social sciences to the historical study of archaic lyric, Poetry and Its Public in Ancient Greece, winner of Italy's prestigious Viareggio Prize, develops a new Picture of the literary history of Greece.

An essentially practical art, ancient Greek poetry was clocely linked to the realities of social and political life and to the actual behavior of individuals within a community. Its mythological content was didactic and pedagogical. But Greek poetry differs radically from modern forms in its mode of communication: it was designed not for reading but for performance, with musical accompaniment, before an audience. In analyzing the formal and social aspects of this performance context, Gentili illuminates such topics as oral composition and improvisation, oral transmission and memory, the connections betweek poetry and music, the changing socioeconomic situation of the artist, and the relations among poets, patrons, and the public.

Reviews

Reviews

[An] important and challenging book.... Cole's re-seeing of the evidence is compelling and provocative. Certainly it will be of great interest to serious students of rhetoric, Greek prose, indeed, of Ancient literature.

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Book Details

Publication Date
Status
Available
Trim Size
6
x
9
Pages
408
ISBN
9780801840197
Table of Contents

Preface to the English Language Edition
Translator's Introduction Abbreviations
Part I.
Chapter 1. Orality and Archaic Culture
Chapter 2. Poetry and Music
Chapter 3. Modes and Forms of Communication
Chapter

Preface to the English Language Edition
Translator's Introduction Abbreviations
Part I.
Chapter 1. Orality and Archaic Culture
Chapter 2. Poetry and Music
Chapter 3. Modes and Forms of Communication
Chapter 4. The Poetics of Mimesis
Chapter 5. The Sociology of Meaning
Chapter 6. The Ways of Love in the Poetry of Thiasos and Symposium
Part II.
Chapter 7. Praise and Blame
Chapter 8. Poet-Patron-Public: The Norm of the Polyp
Chapter 9. Intellectual Activity and Socioeconomic Situation
Part III.
Chapter 10. Archilochus and the Levels of Reality
Chapter 11. The Ship of State: Allegory and Its Workings
Chapter 12. Holy Sappho
Appendix: The Art of Philology
Notes
Bibliogpraphy of Works Cited
Index of Words and Subjects
Index of Passages Cited

Author Bios