Art in the Era of Alexander the Great: Paradigms of Manhood and Their Cultural Traditions

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Cambridge University Press, Aug 30, 2010 - Architecture - 398 pages
In her pursuit of metaphorical, transhistorical imagery, representing men as predators and women as their victims over the centuries, Cohen (Dartmouth) lays out a vast network of interpretive associations that have neither cultural nor chronological limits. Developing her analysis of three late-fourth-century BCE Macedonian monumental themes--the abduction of Helen, the lion hunt, and war--Cohen puts them into a context of large significance through her creation of an ingenious, erudite, and extended repertory of analogous images, accompanied by well-selected exempla. Her proposed network traces patterns established by anthropological perspectives of masculinity and its association with aggressive violence and by principles of feminist ideology, partly derived from Judith Butler. The book's introduction and many subsequent methodological digressions set out the conceptual lines of her approach, as do paradigmatic chapter headings, e.g., "War as Hunt: Hunt as War?" "Rape as Hunt: Hunt as Rape?" and "Rape as War: War as Rape?" Provocative indeed, her categories of enduring imagery challenge traditional views of ancient art in ways both beneficial and problematic, viz., her remark "Ovid, the premier Freudian thinker of the Roman World." Whether modern conceptions of sexuality and the struggles of contrasting genders pertain to antiquity remains as an acknowledged issue. Summing Up: Recommended. Graduate students through faculty/researchers. Graduate Students; Researchers/Faculty. Reviewed by R. Brilliant.
 

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Contents

THEMES AND ISSUES
1
FIGURAL MOSAICS IN THE HOUSE OF
20
The deer hunt
30
Absorption or theatricality?
38
Abduction or rape?
45
Identities in stories of mythological abduction
51
Pellas Amazonomachy
57
MASTER OF LIONS AND OTHER ANIMALS
64
RAPE AS HUNT HUNT AS RAPE?
146
RAPE AS WAR WAR AS RAPE?
162
ABDUCTION AND FEMININITY
187
FIXING THE POSE
298
Notes
305
Bibliography
347
Index
383
Copyright

WAR AS HUNT HUNT AS WAR?
119

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About the author (2010)

Ada Cohen is Associate Professor of Art History at Dartmouth College. She is the author of The Alexander Mosaic: Stories of Victory and Defeat and co-editor of Constructions of Childhood in Ancient Greece and Italy and Assyrian Reliefs from the Palace of Ashurnasirpal II: A Cultural Biography.

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