Women in the Classical World: Image and Text

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9780195098624: Women in the Classical World: Image and Text
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Information about women is scattered throughout the fragmented mosaic of ancient history: the vivid poetry of Sappho survived antiquity on remnants of damaged papyrus; the inscription on a beautiful fourth century B.C.E. grave praises the virtues of Mnesarete, an Athenian woman who died young; a great number of Roman wives were found guilty of poisoning their husbands, but was it accidental food poisoning, or disease, or something more sinister. Apart from the legends of Cleopatra, Dido and Lucretia, and images of graceful maidens dancing on urns, the evidence about the lives of women of the classical world--visual, archaeological, and written--has remained uncollected and uninterpreted.
Now, the lavishly illustrated and meticulously researched Women in the Classical World lifts the curtain on the women of ancient Greece and Rome, exploring the lives of slaves and prostitutes, Athenian housewives, and Rome's imperial family. The first book on classical women to give equal weight to written texts and artistic representations, it brings together a great wealth of materials--poetry, vase painting, legislation, medical treatises, architecture, religious and funerary art, women's ornaments, historical epics, political speeches, even ancient coins--to present women in the historical and cultural context of their time. Written by leading experts in the fields of ancient history and art history, women's studies, and Greek and Roman literature, the book's chronological arrangement allows the changing roles of women to unfold over a thousand-year period, beginning in the eighth century B.C.E. Both the art and the literature highlight women's creativity, sexuality and coming of age, marriage and childrearing, religious and public roles, and other themes. Fascinating chapters report on the wild behavior of Spartan and Etruscan women and the mythical Amazons; the changing views of the female body presented in male-authored gynecological treatises; the "new woman" represented by the love poetry of the late Republic and Augustan Age; and the traces of upper- and lower-class life in Pompeii, miraculously preserved by the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 79 C.E. Provocative and surprising, Women in the Classical World is a masterly foray into the past, and a definitive statement on the lives of women in ancient Greece and Rome.

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About the Author:


Elaine Fantham is Giger Professor of Latin at Princeton University. Helene Peet Foley is Olin Professor of Classics at Barnard College. Natalie Boymel Kampen is Professor of Women's Studies and Art History at Barnard College. Sarah B. Pomeroy is Professor of History at Columbia University. H. Alan Shapiro is Professor of Classics at the University of Canterbury, New Zealand.

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It's no easy task to assemble accurate portraits of the women of ancient Greece and Rome. Fantham and her collaborators--all professors of classics, history, art history, or Latin--have conducted diligent searches of surviving sources, both literary and visual, to chronicle the lives of women both famous and anonymous, aristocratic and indentured, worshiped and abused. The result is a unique illustrated chronological survey of women's lives built upon a foundation of vivid cultural and social history and laced with poetry, anecdotes, and original interpretations. Women are portrayed within the contexts of household customs, sexual mores, experiences in marriage, outlets for creativity, religion, motherhood, and politics. Each sphere is illuminated in surprising detail, the result of careful yet passionate study of all kinds of texts, from medical treatises to trade documents and literature, as well as by astute scrutiny of images found on monuments, decorative arts, murals, and sculptures. Fantham and company have achieved an exciting and invaluable synthesis of visual and literary materials, a triumph, in sum, of scholarship and analysis. Donna Seaman

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9780195067279: Women in the Classical World: Image and Text

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ISBN 10:  0195067274 ISBN 13:  9780195067279
Publisher: Oxford University Press, 1994
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Book Description Oxford University Press Inc, United States, 1995. Paperback. Condition: New. Oxford Pbk.. Language: English . Brand New Book. BL The only study to integrate such a wide range of materials on the women of ancient Greece and Rome into one accessible volume BL Written by a team of distinguished classical scholars and art historians Women in the Classical World gathers the most important primary written and visual sources on the lives of ancient women and presents them in a chronological sequence, within their historical and cultural contexts. Seller Inventory # AAS9780195098624

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