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The Birth of Literary Fiction in Ancient Greece [Hardcover]

Margalit Finkelberg


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Book Description

April 1 1998 0198150954 978-0198150954
The purpose of this study is to find out how and why the `poetics of fiction' arose, its sources, and the materials from which it was created. A series of cultural choices made in archaic and classical Greece produced a clash between the traditional `poetics of truth', which derived poetry from divine inspiration and in the last analysis did not construe the poem as a work of art at all, and the new `poetics of fiction', which derived poetry from art. The eventual succession of the latter, culminating with the Poetics of Aristotle, amounted to an aesthetic revolution because, as a result of it, literary fiction, which since then has become a necessary framework for both the theory and practice of literature in Western tradition, was for the first time separated from non-fiction and given a status of its own.

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Review

`an important and often engaging study' Religious Studies Review

`The book's strength is that it does approach weighty theoretical questions in a readable and organized way' The Classical Outlook

`Scholars of philosophy of literature will be most attracted to this volume's sustained and disciplined argument' The Classical Outlook

`This is a thought-provoking book, much of which involves a close reconstruction of Homeric 'poetics' and its relatinship to a larger Homeric model of psychological experience.' P. J. Rhodes, Greece and Rome

`An important and often engaging study. Of interest primarily to professional Homerists and specialists in the history of literary aesthetics.' S.Douglas Olsen, Religious Studies Review Vol.25 No.4

About the Author

Margalit Finkelberg is at University of Tel Aviv.

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