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The Politics of Sacrifice in Early Greek Myth and Poetry

The Politics of Sacrifice in Early Greek Myth and Poetry

$99.99 (C)

  • Date Published: April 2017
  • availability: In stock
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9781107164260

$ 99.99 (C)
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  • This book offers a new interpretation of ancient Greek sacrifice from a cultural poetic perspective. Through close readings of the Theogony, the Homeric Hymn to Demeter, the Homeric Hymn to Hermes, and the Odyssey in conjunction with evidence from material culture, it demonstrates how sacrifice narratives in early Greek hexameter poetry are intimately connected to a mythic-poetic discourse referred to as the 'politics of the belly'. This mythic-poetic discourse presents sacrifice as a site of symbolic conflict between the male stomach and female womb for both mortals and immortals. Ultimately, the book argues that the ritual of sacrifice operates as a cultural mechanism for the perpetuation of patriarchal ideology not just in early Greek hexameter, but throughout Greek cultural history.

    • Offers a major new interpretation of the mythology of sacrifice, employing a focus on oral poetics
    • Demonstrates how intertextuality may work through multiple works of Greek hexameter poetry
    • Makes use of recent work in anthropology and archaeology in order to offer a new interpretation of sacrifice
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    Product details

    • Date Published: April 2017
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9781107164260
    • length: 208 pages
    • dimensions: 235 x 160 x 17 mm
    • weight: 0.43kg
    • contains: 3 b/w illus. 2 tables
    • availability: In stock
  • Table of Contents

    Introduction: the paradox of sacrifice and the politics of feasting
    1. Anger and honorary shares: the Promethean division revisited
    2. Sacrifice, succession, and the politics of patriarchy
    3. The desire of a God: semiotic sacrifice and patriarchal identity in the Homeric Hymn to Hermes
    4. Cities where men sacrifice: Odysseus returns to the fatherland
    Conclusion: sacrificial narrative and the politics of the belly.

  • Author

    Charles H. Stocking, University of Western Ontario
    Charles H. Stocking is an assistant professor in the Department of Classical Studies at the University of Western Ontario. He has published multiple articles on the interaction of ritual, politics, and the body in Greek literature and culture in journals such as Mètis, Arion, and Classical Antiquity. He has received fellowships with the Classics in Contemporary Perspectives Initiative at the University of South Carolina and with the Harvard Center for Hellenic Studies, and he is currently an associate member with the research group ANHIMA (Anthropologie et histoire des mondes antiques) in Paris.

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