Ovid's Metamorphoses

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Oxford University Press, Jul 15, 2004 - Literary Criticism - 192 pages
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Oxford Approaches to Classical Literature (Series Editors: Kathleen Coleman and Richard Rutherford) introduces individual works of Greek and Latin literature to readers who are approaching them for the first time. Each volume sets the work in its literary and historical context, and aims to offer a balanced and engaging assessment of its content, artistry, and purpose. A brief survey of the influence of the work upon subsequent generations is included to demonstrate its enduring relevance and power. All quotations from the original are translated into English. Ovid's Metamorphoses have been seen as both the culmination of and a revolution in the classical epic tradition, transferring narrative interest from war to love and fantasy. This introduction considers how Ovid found and shaped his narrative from the creation of the world to his own sophisticated times, illustrating the cruelty of jealous gods, the pathos of human love, and the imaginative fantasy of flight, monsters, magic, and illusion. Elaine Fantham introduces the reader not only to this marvelous and complex narrative poem, but to the Greek and Roman traditions behind Ovid's tales of transformation and a selection of the images and texts that it inspired.
 

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Contents

1 Transforming Bodies Transforming Epic
3
2 Creation Flood and Fire
21
3 Cadmus and the Tragic Dynasty of Thebes
36
4 Human Artistry and Divine Jealousy
51
5 The Lives of Women
61
6 Aspects of Love
74
7 HeroesOld Style and New
89
8 Fantasy the Fabulous and the Miraculous Metamorphoses of Nature
105
Ovids Polymorphous Poem
119
10 After Ovid
133
APPENDIX 1 Ovids Poetical Works
153
APPENDIX 2 Outline of the Metamorphoses
157
Index of Persons
167
General Index
175
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About the author (2004)

Elaine Fantham is Giger Professor Emerita of Latin at Princeton University.

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