OXFORD UNIVERSITY PRESS

Mapping the Afterlife: From Homer to Dante

ISBN : 9780190670481

Price(incl.tax): 
¥13,090
Author: 
Emma Gee
Pages
368 Pages
Format
Hardcover
Size
156 x 156 mm
Pub date
Jan 2020
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This book is a tour of Afterlife landscapes from Homer to Dante. It argues that the topography of the Afterlife in Greek and Roman tradition, and in Dante, reflects the state of 'scientific' knowledge at the time of the various contexts in which we find it, and the landscape of the Other World is a way of exploring and assimilating the shape of this world. This book posits that there is a dominant spatial idiom in afterlife landscapes, which I call the 'Journey-Vision paradigm.' By this the author means the presence of two kinds of space in afterlife representations - the horizontal journey of the soul across the afterlife landscape, and a synoptic vision of the universe. This has, in studies of individual texts, often been characterised as an inconsistency or anomaly: many scholars have argued that the Vision of the universe is out of place in the underworld landscape. However, when one looks across the entire tradition, one finds that afterlife landscapes, almost without exception, contain these two kinds of space in one form or another. The function of this double vision of space - the Journey-Vision paradigm - is, the book argues, an attempt to harmonise the underworld, as the landscape of the soul, with the 'scientific' universe, and to understand humanity in terms of the cosmos, and vice versa.

Index: 

Introduction
PART 1: DUALITIES
Chapter 1: The Splitting of Herakles
Chapter 2: The Roadmap
Chapter 3: Proserpina's Tapestry, Strabo's Cloak
PART 2: COSMOS
Chapter 4: The Cloak of Stars
Chapter 5: Soul Music
Intermezzo
PART 3: PLATO'S SOULSCAPES
Chapter 6: Interplanetary Harmonies
Chapter 7: A Sprinkling of Science
Chapter 8: The Lyre and the Cloak
PART 4: TO THE SKY
Chapter 9: The Dark Side of the Moon
Chapter 10: Dante's Poem of Fire
Conclusion
Bibliography
Index
Endpiece

About the author: 

Emma Gee was educated in Sydney and Cambridge and worked in Exeter and Sydney before her present post in St Andrews. She has written on Greek, Latin and Renaissance literature, including Aratus, Ovid and George Buchanan. She studied music before Classics, and her special interests include ancient astronomy, and the Greek and Roman afterlife. She is a translator of Lucretius, a published poet, and practises Ashtanga yoga.

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