The Closure of Space in Roman Poetics: Empire's Inward Turn
This ambitious book investigates a major yet underexplored nexus of themes in Roman cultural history: the evolving tropes of enclosure, retreat and compressed space within an expanding, potentially borderless empire. In Roman writers' exploration of real and symbolic enclosures - caves, corners, villas, bathhouses, the 'prison' of the human body itself - we see the aesthetic, philosophical and political intersecting in fascinating ways, as the machine of empire is recast in tighter and tighter shapes. Victoria Rimell brings ideas and methods from literary theory, cultural studies and philosophy to bear on an extraordinary range of ancient texts rarely studied in juxtaposition, from Horace's Odes, Virgil's Aeneid and Ovid's Ibis, to Seneca's Letters, Statius' Achilleid and Tacitus' Annals. A series of epilogues puts these texts in conceptual dialogue with our own contemporary art world, and emphasizes the role Rome's imagination has played in the history of Western thinking about space, security and dwelling.
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Achilleid Achilles Aeneas Aeneid Amatoria ancient angulus artist Augustan Augustus Baiae bathhouse bathroom baths beginning body bugonia Caesar cave chapter civil concealed condere corner cultural dark Deidamia Dido Dido’s discussion elegiac empire enclosure epic Epistles erotic especially Etruscus evokes excutere exile Georgics Greek hiding Horace Horace’s Ibis imagine imperial inside interior Kapoor kind latebrae Latin literature Latium letter literary look Lucan’s Lucilius man’s Martial Metamorphoses metaphor mirror Mnestheus mother Narcissus narrow Nero Nero’s Neronian Odes Ovid Ovid’s Ovidian paradox Perillus Persius Petronius Phalaris philosophical poem poet poet’s poetic poetry political Rachel Whiteread rape refuge reminded retreat Roman Rome Rome’s satire Scipio seems Seneca Silvae space spatial Statius Stoic story Suetonius suggests symbolic Tacitus texts Thetis torture Toussaint transformation Tristia Trojan Troy turn Turnus uncanny verb villa violent Virgil’s Virgil’s Aeneid visual Vitruvius Whiteread words writes