Virgil's Homeric Lens (Hardback) book cover

Virgil's Homeric Lens

By Edan Dekel

© 2012 – Routledge

166 pages

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About the Book

Virgil’s Homeric Lens reevaluates the traditional view of the Aeneid’s relationship to Homer’s Iliad and Odyssey. Almost since the death of Virgil, there has been an assumption that the Aeneid breaks into two discrete halves: Virgil’s Odyssey, and Virgil’s Iliad. Although modified in various ways over the centuries, this neat dichotomy has generally diminished the complexity and resonance of the connection between the two canonical epic poets. This work offers an alternate approach in which Virgil uses the transformative power of the Odyssey as a precise filter through which to read the Iliadic experience.

By examining the ways in which Virgil bases his own epic project on the dynamic interaction between the two Homeric poems themselves, Edan Dekel proposes a system in which the Aeneid uses the Odyssey both as a conceptual model for writing an intertextual epic and as a powerful refracting lens for the specific interpretation of the Iliad and its consequences. The traditional view of the Homeric poems as static sources for the construction of distinct "Odyssean" and "Iliadic" halves of the Aeneid is supplanted by an analysis which emphasizes the active and persistent influence of the Odyssey as a guide to processing the major thematic concerns of the Iliad and exploring the multiple aftermaths of the Trojan war.

Table of Contents

1. Primary Colors 2. Iliadic Refraction 3. Odyssean Diffraction 4. Virgilian Reflection

About the Author

Edan Dekel is Assistant Professor of Classics and Jewish Studies at Williams College. His research interests include Greek and Latin poetry, comparative epic, biblical studies, Jewish folklore, medieval literature, and classical and biblical reception.

About the Series

Routledge Monographs in Classical Studies

Forthcoming titles:

Thinking the Greeks: A Volume in Honour of James M. Redfield edited by Lillian Doherty and Bruce King

The Greek and Roman Trophy: From Battlefield Marker to Icon of Power by Lauren Kinnee

The Getae: Changing Landscapes of Colonization, Imperialism, and Memory edited by Ioana Oltean, Ligia Ruscu, and Dan Ruscu

Un-Roman Sex: Gender, Sexuality, and Lovemaking in the Roman Provinces and Frontiers edited by Rob Collins and Tatiana Ivleva

Divinations and Systems of Knowledge in Greco-Roman Antiquity edited by Crystal Addey and Victoria Leonard

Villas and Values: The Cultural and Competitive Lives of Rome's Elites by Hannah Platts

The Doctor in Roman Law and Society by Molly Jones-Lewis

 

 

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
HIS002000
HISTORY / Ancient / General
HIS002020
HISTORY / Ancient / Rome
LIT004190
LITERARY CRITICISM / Ancient & Classical
LIT014000
LITERARY CRITICISM / Poetry