Scrinium Classical Antiquity

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  • Livy's Written Rome. University of Michigan Press, Ann Arbor, 2000. XII,205p. Original blue cloth with dust wrps. The book's 'concern is with Livy's 'representation of space, monuments, and memory' and with 'the 'Ab Urbe Condita' as a spatial entity, a monument, and a lengthy act of remembering'. These interests are pursued in an introductory chapter, which discusses Livy's history as a 'monumentum', and four seperate studies of individual episodes. (...) J.'s longest and perhaps most ambitious study is a reinterpretation of Livy's notorious treatment of the trials of the Scipios. In J.'s view the introduction of variant accounts (...) is not to be seen as his bowing to an unpalatable historiographical imperative, but Livy's embracing features of the historical record which allow him to advance a broader and more coherent interpretation of Scipio Africanus. Livy welcomes the uncertainty introduced by these variants because they draw attention to an historical figure who transcends any normal historical treatment. (...) This is a novel and challenging interpretation. (...) It is not possible in such a short review to respond comprehensively to the content both good and bad, of J.'s work. (...) It should be obvious that I approach Livy from a more traditional viewpoint. The major disagreement would be in our assessment of the range of literary techniques which an ancient historian might use to project meaning, and therefore the complexity of the messages which he might be able to convey. J. reckons this ability to be extremely high; more traditional critics reckon it much lower. (...) J. for the most part (she is not always transparent) attempts to discover what Livy sought to convey to his readership.' (S.J. NORTHWOOD in The Classical Review (New Series), 2000, pp.455-457). From the library of Prof. Carl Deroux. € 95.00 (Antiquarian) ISBN: 9780472107896

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