The volume unites the three aspects - poetry, philosophy, and science - found in Lucretius' De Rerum Natura. With ten original essays and an analytical introduction, the volume aims not only to combine different approaches within single covers, but to offer responses to the poem by experts from all three scholarly backgrounds.
"Ennius' Annales was one of the most important hexameter epics written before Vergil's Aeneid, and perhaps the most influential Latin poem of any period. ... This book ... capitalizes on the fruits of ... Ennian studies in order to analyze the reception of Ennius' Annales in Lucretius' De Rerum Natura. ... For the reader interested in Lucretius, this book offers a systematic analysis of the primary poetic model of the De Rerum Natura and so fills a long-standing and sizeable gap in our understanding of Lucretian poetics and his allusive program. For the reader interested in Ennius, this book offers, at best, an excavation of Lucretius' version of the Annales, a version that must have been foundational for many subsequent receptions of the Annales ... . "--
How deeply into the structure of physical reality do the effects of our way of representing it reach? To what extent do constructivist accounts of scientific theorizing involve realist assumptions, and vice versa? This book provides a lucid and concise introduction to contemporary debates, taking as its theme the question of the relationship of representation and reality. It treats in an attractive and accessible way the historical, philosophical, and literary aspects of this question. In particular, it explores how the present relates to and configures claims to scientific knowledge from the past, taking as its main case study On the Nature of Things (De Rerum Natura), the poem on physics written by the Roman poet Lucretius in the 50s B.C.E. The book engages in a sustained argument about realist assumptions in scientific and other discourses through detailed analysis and discussion of some of the most important recent contributions to this debate. Engaging sympathetically but not uncritically with constructivist accounts of scientific knowledge, the book takes up a sustained critique of recent contributions to that debate, including those of Ian Hacking, Evelyn Fox Keller, Bruno Latour, and Hans-Jrg Rheinberger. What are the implications of regarding such knowledge as "discovered" or "invented"? How is the rhetoric of such claims to be identified and the pretentions of those claims assessed?In what ways can realist and constructivist approaches be reconciled? How do these considerations affect the way we read scientific texts from the past and regard them historically? What emerges is a fresh and challenging assessment of the role of time and temporal perspective in assessing claims to knowledge in scientific thought and of the importance of textuality to the history of knowledge. A wide variety of readers, from classicists and intellectual historians to epistemologists of science, will enjoy and learn from Rethinking Reality. Duncan Kennedy is Reader in Latin Literature and the Theory of Criticism, University of Bristol. He is also the author of The Arts of Love: Five Studies in the Discourse of Roman Love Elegy.
The Georgics, Lucretius and the Didactic Tradition
Author: Monica R. Gale
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
The Georgics has for many years been a source of fierce controversy among scholars of Latin literature. Is the work optimistic or pessimistic, pro- or anti-Augustan? Should we read it as a eulogy or a bitter critique of Rome and her imperial ambitions? This book suggests that the ambiguity of the poem is the product of a complex and thorough-going engagement with earlier writers in the didactic tradition: Hesiod, Aratus and - above all - Lucretius. Drawing on both traditional, philological approaches to allusion, and modern theories of intertextuality, it shows how the world-views of the earlier poets are subjected to scrutiny and brought into conflict with each other. Detailed consideration of verbal parallels and of Lucretian themes, imagery and structural patterns in the Georgics forms the basis for a reading of Virgil's poem as an extended meditation on the relations between the individual and society, the gods and the natural environment.
Creating a new Lucretius of renewed significance, Harold Donohue rejects the view of Lucretius's poetic isolation and explains the philological traditions underpinning it. This book opens up an extensive relation between Callimachus and Lucretius as it compares the nature and role of poetry in their respective eras in view of the relationship. Donohue redefines the placement of Lucretius in the poetic activities and traditions of Rome, examining certain images (swan, water, poetry as enchantment) which mark him as an adherent to the tradition of Callimachean poetry. Contents: Lucretius and Antipater of Sidon: The Link to Callimachus; Lucretius and Callimachus: The Aims of Poetry; Alexandria and the Poetry of Callimachus; Rome and the Poetry of Lucretius.
This book gathers together some of the most important and influential scholarly articles of the last sixty to seventy years (three of which are translated into English here for the first time) on the Roman poet Lucretius. Lucretius' philosophical epic, the De Rerum Natura or On the Nature of the Universe (c.55 BC), seeks to convince its reader of the validity of the rationalist theories of the Hellenistic thinker Epicurus. The articles collected in this volume explore Lucretius' poetic and argumentative technique from a variety of perspectives, and also consider the poem in relation to its philosophical and literary milieux, and to the values and ideology of contemporary Roman society. All quotations in Latin or Greek are translated.
As of Volume 9 (1994/95) John Benjamins Publishing Company is the official publisher of the Belgian Journal of Linguistics, the annual publication of the Linguistic Society of Belgium. Each volume is topical and includes selected papers from the international meetings organised by the LSB.