A Companion to Ancient Aesthetics (Blackwell Companions to

The 1st of its variety, A spouse to historic Aesthetics provides a synoptic view of the humanities, which crosses conventional barriers and explores the cultured event of the ancients throughout a variety of media-oral, aural, visible, and literary.

• Investigates the various ways that the humanities have been skilled and conceptualized within the historic international
• Explores the cultured event of the ancients throughout a number media, treating literary, oral, aural, and visible arts jointly in one quantity
• offers an built-in standpoint at the significant topics of historic aesthetics which demanding situations conventional demarcations
• increases questions about the similarities and variations among historic and sleek methods of puzzling over where of artwork in society

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James Porter (Chapter 26) argues that this category, far from being a literary critical concept that emerges only with Caecilius and Longinus, pervades Greek literature from the beginning, its properties such as “grandeur,” “elevation,” “dignity,” and “majesty” associated with an intensified experience of beauty in response to a whole range of phenomena. As Adeline Grand-Clément demonstrates (Chapter 27), this is a protean notion, used to describe the visual effect produced by the assemblage of different colors and materials on an object, but also to express the ideas of variety and complexity; variegated art works have a seductive power that appeals to the eyes but also to other senses, thus establishing that poikilia is a key notion for understanding a distinguishing feature of ancient aesthetic responses: the fondness for polysensory experience, which generates pleasure.

A good deal has been written about Euripidean comedy and the paratragedy of Aristophanes – dramatic phenomena that must owe their development to the cheek-by-jowl presentation of both genres (along with satyr plays) at one and the same annual festival (Revermann 2006). For example, the members of the mandatory 10 dithryambic choruses of men and the 10 of boys all had to be citizens by birth and members of the tribe for which they sang and danced. The latter led to a growing recognition of professionalization among actors, and a desire to offer only top-grade productions.

While the diversity of each poet’s memory-hoard no doubt enabled cross-referencing, the overall shaping of the canon must have been tailored to the circuit of competitions, each city-state exerting local preferences, while traveling poets managed a Panhellenic performance anthology. Although on the surface a story about dueling mythic singers, the Thamyris incident also alludes to the potential agōn between Homer and rivals (or between rhapsodes backing different regional heroes). In an actual performance of this Hesiodic poem, the reference highlighted the rod (rhabdos) carried by rhapsodic performers (another ancient etymology of “rhapsode” being “rod-singer”).

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