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Empire Studies & the Book of Revelation
Many assume the book of Revelation is merely an “anti-imperial” attack on the Roman Empire. Yet, Shane J. Wood argues this conclusion over-exaggerates Rome’s significance and, thus, misses Revelation’s true target—the construction of the alter-empire through the destruction of the preeminent adversary: Satan. Applying insights from Postcolonial criticism and 'Examinations of Dominance,' this monograph challenges trajectories of New Testament Empire Studies by developing an Alter-Imperial paradigm that appreciates the complexities between the sovereign(s) and subject(s) of a society—beyond simply rebellion or acquiescence. Shane J. Wood analyses Roman propaganda, Jewish interaction with the Flavians, and Domitianic persecution to interpret Satan's release (Rev 20:1-10) as the climax of God's triumphal procession. Thus, Rome provides the imagery; Eden provides the target.
Writing the Barbarian Past examines the presentation of the non-Roman, pre-Christian past in Latin and vernacular historical narratives composed between c.550 and c.1000: the Gothic histories of Jordanes and Isidore of Seville, the Fredegar chronicle, the Liber Historiae Francorum, Paul the Deacon’s Historia Langobardorum, Waltharius, and Beowulf; it also examines the evidence for an oral vernacular tradition of historical narrative in this period.
In this book, Shami Ghosh analyses the relative significance granted to the Roman and non-Roman inheritances in narratives of the distant past, and what the use of this past reveals about the historical consciousness of early medieval elites, and demonstrates that for them, cultural identity was conceived of in less binary terms than in most modern scholarship.
The Iberian Peninsula from Late Antiquity to the Early Modern Period
Editor: Sabine Panzram
The Power of Cities focuses on Iberian cities during the lengthy transition from the late Roman to the early modern period, with a particular interest in the change from early Christianity to the Islamic period, and on to the restoration of Christianity.
Drawing on case studies from cities such as Toledo, Cordoba, and Seville, it collects for the first time recent research in urban studies using both archaeological and historical sources. Against the common portrayal of these cities characterized by discontinuities due to decadence, decline and invasions, it is instead continuity – that is, a gradual transformation – which emerges as the defining characteristic.
The volume argues for a fresh interpretation of Iberian cities across this period, seen as a continuum of structural changes across time, and proposes a new history of the Iberian Peninsula, written from the perspective of the cities.

Contributors are Javier Arce, María Asenjo González, Antonio Irigoyen López, Alberto León Muñoz, Matthias Maser, Sabine Panzram, Gisela Ripoll, Torsten dos Santos Arnold, Isabel Toral-Niehoff, Fernando Valdés Fernández, and Klaus Weber.
For poets throughout the world Rome was the world. This is particularly true for Russian poets, owing to the anagrammatical relation of the words Rome and mir (Rome and world). The legacy of ancient Rome has always constituted an important component of the Russian cultural consciousness. The revitalization of classical scholarship in nineteenth-century Russia and new approaches to antiquity prompted many of the Russian Symbolists to seek their inspiration in ancient Rome. Vladimir Solovyov, Dmitry Merezhkovsky, Valery Bryusov, Vyacheslav Ivanov, Maksimilian Voloshin, Vasily Komarovsky, and Mikhail Kuzmin all made significant contributions to what is often referred to as the “Roman text.” The Legacy of Ancient Rome in the Russian Silver Age analyzes the forms involved in creating the Roman image and explores its functionality within the given poetic system. In addition to the formal analysis, the background and the stimulus leading up to the composition of a particular poem are explored, as well as allusions to legends, myths and Rome’s geography and architecture. Moreover, this study considers the function of the Roman text in Russian Symbolist poetics and the works of the individual poets. Finally, the relation between the Roman and Petersburg texts of Russian literature is explored, since many of the Russian Symbolist poets found in Rome a perfect metaphor for their studies of the city and “urban” poetry.
Gender, Intertextuality, and Politics
In Uncovering Jewish Creativity in Book III of the Sibylline oracles, Ashley L. Bacchi reclaims the importance of the Sibyl as a female voice of prophecy and reveals new layers of intertextual references that address political, cultural, and religious dialogue in second-century Ptolemaic Egypt. This investigation stands apart from prior examinations by reorienting the discussion around the desirability of the pseudonym to an issue of gender. It questions the impact of identifying the author’s message with a female prophetic figure and challenges the previous identification of paraphrased Greek oracles and their function within the text. Verses previously seen as anomalous are transferred from the role of Greek subterfuge of Jewish identity to offering nuanced support of monotheistic themes.