Catalogue


Performance and gender in ancient Greece : nondramatic poetry in its setting /
Eva Stehle.
imprint
Princeton, N.J. : Princeton Unviversity Press, 1997.
description
xv, 367 p.
ISBN
0691036179 (cloth : alk. paper)
format(s)
Book
Holdings
More Details
imprint
Princeton, N.J. : Princeton Unviversity Press, 1997.
isbn
0691036179 (cloth : alk. paper)
catalogue key
793388
 
Includes bibliographical references and indexes.
A Look Inside
Excerpts
Flap Copy
"Brilliant.... This is one of the most important books on Greek lyric for many years, and it will make a lasting contribution."--Ian Rutherford
Reviews
Review Quotes
Brilliant.... This is one of the most important books on Greek lyric for many years, and it will make a lasting contribution.
Stehle has set about the important and arduous task of situating existing texts and text fragments of ancient Green nondramatic poetry in their performative contexts . . . This is a thorough analysis . . . clearly written and compelling, a valuable resource for classics, gender, and performance studies scholars and students.
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Summaries
Unpaid Annotation
In a book that describes how men and women, young and adult, sang or recited in public settings, Stehle looks at poetry as an occasion for the performer's self-presentation. By discussing a wide range of pre-Hellenistic poetry, including Sappho's, and comparing how men and women speak about themselves, she constructs an innovative approach to performance that illuminates gender ideology. After considering the audience and the function of different modes of performance - community, bardic, and participation in closed groups - Stehle explores this poetry as gendered speech, which interacts with performers' bodily presence to create social identities for the speakers. Texts for female choral performers reveal how women in public spoke in order to disavow the power of their speech and their sexual power. Male performers, however, could manipulate gender as an ideological system: they sometimes claimed female identity in addition to male, associated themselves with triumph over a defeated (mythical) female figure, or asserted their disconnection from women, thereby creating idealized social identities for themselves. A final chapter concentrates on the written poetry of Sappho, which borrows the communicative strategy of writing in order to create a fictional speaker distinct from the singer, a "Sappho" whom others could recreate in imagination. Sappho's poetry subverts gendered speech by exploiting the hermeneutic difference between embodied spoken communication and writing.
Main Description
"Like love, Greek poetry was not for hereafter," writes Eva Stehle, "but shared in the present mirth and laughter of festival, ceremony, and party." Describing how men and women, young and adult, sang or recited in public settings, Stehle treats poetry as an occasion for the performer's self-presentation. She discusses a wide range of pre-Hellenistic poetry, including Sappho's, compares how men and women speak about themselves, and constructs an innovative approach to performance that illuminates gender ideology. After considering the audience and the function of different modes of performance--community, bardic, and closed groups--Stehle explores this poetry as gendered speech, which interacts with performers' bodily presence to create social identities for the speakers. Texts for female choral performers reveal how women in public spoke in order to disavow the power of their speech and their sexual power. Male performers, however, could manipulate gender as an ideological system: they sometimes claimed female identity in addition to male, associated themselves with triumph over a defeated (mythical) female figure, or asserted their disconnection from women, thereby creating idealized social identities for themselves. A final chapter concentrates on the written poetry of Sappho, which borrows the communicative strategy of writing in order to create a fictional speaker distinct from the singer, a "Sappho" whom others could re-create in imagination.
Table of Contents
Preface
Abbreviations
Introductionp. 3
Community Poetryp. 26
Women in Performance in the Communityp. 71
Male Performers in the Communityp. 119
Bardic Poetryp. 170
The Symposiump. 213
Sappho's Circlep. 262
Conclusionp. 319
Appendix: Chronology of Primary Sourcesp. 326
Transliterated Termsp. 329
Bibliographyp. 331
Index Locorump. 353
General Indexp. 357
Table of Contents provided by Publisher. All Rights Reserved.

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