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By Christos Tsagalis

The earlier few a long time have noticeable the advance of recent severe tools with which the poetic and rhetorical dimensions of old Greek texts will be evaluated. during this quantity, a world workforce of wonderful students comes jointly to check how quite a lot of old texts in numerous genres have been capable of assert their authority and claims to fact, usually alluding to each other in refined methods as they tried to undertaking their very own superiority. a chain of illuminating new readings is obtainable of either specific passages and entire works within the gentle of those new severe advances

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Additional resources for Allusion, Authority, and Truth: Critical Perspectives on Greek Poetic and Rhetorical Praxis

Example text

Numerous elements in the story of the Wanderings point to a temporary suspension of the hero’s conventional epic status. 502-505): the taunt leads to the Cyclops’ prayer to his father Poseidon and the wrath of the god, which will keep Odysseus away from the channels of epic for many years to come. By contrast, Odysseus’ memorable revenge on the collective suitors in his megaron will soon make the rounds of the royal courts, just as did the failed nostos of Agamemnon. 4 Gastēr and Thumos Odysseus’ beggar period, then, is wedged between events taking place outside the reach of epic (only the wanderer’s first-person narrative can provide evidence for them) and events with full epic connectivity.

Actually, his discourse seems marked essentially by a diffused atomism, coupled with a return to a cosmological conception close to that of Empedocles. The processes of the creation and recreation of the cosmos are more or less regularly compared to the processes of the separation and aggregation of particles, but these cosmogonic processes are animated by divine forces such as Harmonia, Peitho, Aphrodite and, naturally, Zeus. Such is also the case, for example, in the movement of sprouting or rising forth, which, in its orphic creation, animates the cosmos.

This is a time of disguise, during which Odysseus is dependent on the help of others. It is also a time in which an elementary survival instinct can make a place for desire and longing, desire first to get home, and, once there, to take revenge on the suitors. In terms of the dynamics and construction of epic fame, a subject in which the Odyssey takes a keen interest, this period falls between a time when kleos is unattainable or even dangerous and a time when Odysseus comes to be reintegrated in the network of epic kleos.

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