Homer in the Twentieth Century Between World Literature and the Western Canon

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  • Edition: Reprint
  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2010-09-25
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press

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This collection of essays explores the crucial place of Homer in the shifting cultural landscape of the twentieth century. It argues that Homer was viewed both as the founding father of the Western literary canon and as sharing important features with poems, performances, and traditions which were often deemed neither literary nor Western: the epics of Yugoslavia and sub-Saharan Africa, the keening performances of Irish women, the spontaneous inventiveness of the Blues. The book contributes to current debates about the nature of the Western literary canon, the evolving notion of world literature, the relationship between orality and the written word, and the dialogue between texts across time and space. Homer in the Twentieth Century contends that the Homeric poems play an important role in shaping those debates and, conversely, that the experiences of the twentieth century open new avenues for the interpretation of Homer's much-travelled texts.

Author Biography

Barbara Graziosi is Senior Lecturer in Classics, Durham University

Emily Greenwood is Associate Professor of Classics, Yale University

Table of Contents

Introduction, Barbara Graziosi & Emily Greenwood
I. Placing Homer in the Twentieth Century
1. Homer after Parry: Tradition, Reception, and the Timeless Text, Johannes Haubold
2. Singing across the Faultlines: Cultural Shifts in Twentieth-Century Receptions of Homer, Lorna Hardwick
II. Scholarship and Fiction
3. Homer among the Irish: Synge, Yeats, George Thompson, and Parry, Richard Martin
4. Homer and Joyce: The Case of Nausicaa, Stephen Minta
5. Homer in Albania: Oral Epic and the Geography of Literature, Barbara Graziosi
III. Distance and Form
6. Logue's Tele-vision: Reading Homer from a Distance, Emily Greenwood
7. Some Assimilations of the Homeric Simile in Later Twentieth-Century Poetry, Oliver Taplin
8. `Homecomings without Home': Representations of (post)colonial nostos (homecoming) in the lyric of Aime Cesaire and Derek Walcott, Gregson Davis
9. Theo Angelopoulos in the Underworld, Francoise Letoublon
IV. Politics and Interpretation
10. Homer in the Greek Civil War (1946-49), David Ricks
11. `Naked' and `O Brother, Where Art Thou?': The politics and poetics of epic cinema, Simon Goldhill
12. An American Homer for the Twentieth Century, Seth Schein

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