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Lecture 19

CLA160 Lecture 19 Notes

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Johnathon Burgess

CLA160 Lecture 19 Notes Provincial Places – Themes - travel and ethnography in literature – prose literature of the Empire - places • Judaea • Egypt • Britain - nature of evidence, especially for common people Literary Travel and Ethnography - Pausanias nd • long work composed in the 2 century A.D. • travel guide to mainland Greece • not quite part of the Second Sophistic but has similarities • visit to cultural past for Greeks • Greek heritage from Asia Minor • perhaps a guide for Romans on Greek culture • guide to Greece as it exists and investigation on the past of Greek culture • displays his interest in his Greek past and educating himself on his renown Greek heritage • perhaps drew from the value of Greek culture to be incorporated into the Roman Empire - comparison of ethnography to tales of far-off monsters, cannibals – seen in prose authors - arguably Greco-Roman conceptions of the “other” - in The Odyssey, Herodotus, and Pliny the Elder – travel and ethnography is seen - excerpt of the Elder Pliny – concerned about cannibals and monsters - talks of cannibals, Scythians, Cyclopes – uses Homer and Herodotus – Natural st History – not Second Sophistic but Latin prose from the 1 century A.D. - paradox of the peripheral “other” at the center of the Roman world - authors composing stories with monsters, exotic peoples, etc. – why – what goes through their minds - representation of Greek, Roman encounters with exotic peoples at the periphery of the world – similarity to Herodotus and oral reports of nearby and northern peoples – many tales are wild and far-fetched - conceptualization of people who lived on the fringes of civilization – the “ends of the world” in the Greek/Roman world Pliny the Elder’s Natural History - not second sophistic – later prose – 1 century A.D. - Roman author writing in Latin - talk of cannibals - reference to Hesiod, Homer, etc. - topic of “what is the human being” – gathers stories of those who do not meet the description – peoples who do not seem quite “human” - quote: “in the very center of the earth, in Italy and Sicily, nations formerly existed with these monstrous propensities, the Cyclopes, and the Laestrygones, for example” - comes up with people whose feet are turned backwards - idea that the “weird” people live at the outskirts - strange that the Cyclopes, cannibals, are thought to have once lived in Sicily, what is considered to be in the center of the Roman world – discomfort of Pliny Paradox of Rome as the “Other” to Greeks - in early history - Etruscans, Latins, Sabines – considered to be in outskirts - The Odyssey – conception of only a dim Greek conception of the Italian peninsula - Hesiod’s Theogony – on the sons f Odysseus and Circe in the land of the Etruscans – Latinus and Agrios – translated as “Mr. Latin” and “Mr. Rustic/Savage” - Horace – conquering the “rustic” Latium - quote: “Captured Greece captured her savage conqueror, and brought her arts of rustic Latium” – Graecia capta ferum victorem cepit et artis intulit agresi Latio - continuing conception on he part of a Roman author in poetry – Romans as the “other” - but as the Romans became dominant, they became rulers of Hellenistic culture and the Mediterranean - second sophistic – Greek authors writing in Greek – but in the Roman Empire – Greek identity in the Roman world – example of Pausanias trying to discern his identity - second sophistic shows how captured Greek culture continued to captivate the “once barbarian” Romans – or how the Greeks in a Roman world constructed an identity - prose author Lucian – part of the Second Sophistic – many works – comedic, historical, rhetorical works - parody of travel literature – pokes fun at Herodotus as his “history” being fiction - creation of a fiction in which Herodotus is punished on an afterlife island - The Odyssey – as travel literature of the past – all lies – mixing of poetry and prose - Lucian telling his travel story as “true” fiction – in one instance he travels to the moon – first example of science fiction – True History - quote: “for though I tell the truth in nothing else, I shall at least be truthful in saying that I am a liar!...” Growth of the Empire - travelling to provincial places – both east and west - evidence – documents and letters - focus: • Judaea • Egypt • Britain Judaea - main source for Judaea – Josephus – Jewish in origin by educated in Greek culture – wrote in the Greek language - Jerusalem temple sensitivity – or lack thereof – mainly the insensitivity of the Romans - much violence arose around Jewish practices - insensitivity to Jewish practice – Pompey entered the temple – Caligula wanted to put his image in it - revolts – major revolt starts under Nero – 66-70 A.D. - revolt ended a multi-year war that
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