Signs of Orality: The Oral Tradition and Its Influence in the Greek and Roman World ; [... Papers at a Conference Entitled 'Epos and Logos' ... Durban, South Africa in July 1996]

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E. Anne MacKay
BRILL, 1999 - Literary Criticism - 261 pages
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The essays in this volume present new insights into the far-reaching influence of an early oral culture on subsequent development after the spread of literacy. At the outset, revisionist essays on the Homeric epics examine such questions as historical memory, Homer's audience(s), descriptive strategies, ring-composition, and the status of orality as a constitutive feature of the epics. These are followed by virtually unprecedented studies of the orality of later (written) literature, including Greek oratory, Virgilian epic, Pliny's "Panegyricus" and story-telling in late Greek writers. Included as well are two discussions of Athenian vase-painting: annular scene-composition in the black-figure tradition, and the implications of "kalos"-inscriptions. An introduction by leading oral theorist John Miles Foley situates all the essays at the leading edge of oral theoretical development.
 

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Contents

How Oral is Oral Composition?
29
Describing and Narrating in Homers Iliad
49
Ringcomposition and Linearity in Homer
65
Odysseus Evasiveness and the A udience of the Odyssey
79
Homer and Historical Memory
95
The Bystander at the Ringside Ringcomposition in Early
115
The Vase as Ventriloquist Kaosinscriptions and the Culture
143
The Orality of Greek Oratory
163
Dialogue and Orality in a PostPlatonic Age
181
Virgils Formularity and Pius Aeneas
199
Two Levels of Orality in the Genesis of Plinys Panegyricus
221
Notes on Contributors
239
Bibliography
241
General Index
257
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About the author (1999)

Anne Mackay, Ph.D. (1984) in Classics, Victoria University of Wellington, is Professor of Classics at the University of Natal, Durban, South Africa. Her publications include specialist studies of ancient Greek vase-painting as well as comparative analyses of vase-painting and oral literature.

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