The Sorrows of the Ancient Romans

The Sorrows of the Ancient Romans : The Gladiator and the Monster

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Description

This inquiry into the collective psychology of the ancient Romans speaks not about military conquest, sober law, and practical politics, but about extremes of despair, desire, and envy. Carlin Barton makes us uncomfortably familiar with a society struggling at or beyond the limits of human endurance. To probe the tensions of the Roman world in the period from the first century b.c.e. through the first two centuries c.e., Barton picks two images: the gladiator and the "monster."show more

Product details

  • Paperback | 224 pages
  • 158 x 236 x 16mm | 339.99g
  • Princeton University Press
  • New Jersey, United States
  • English
  • Reprint
  • 0691010919
  • 9780691010915
  • 1,207,053

Review quote

"Barton amasses an impressive collection of ancient evidence and treats it to an even more impressive interpretation, reinforced by references to modern psychological and anthropological studies. The thesis is enriched and underscored by countless examples from contemporary films, plays, and literature... This provocative volume deserves a wide audience."--Richard E. Mitchell, American Historical Review "Surely the most erudite treatment of Latin sadomasochism around and a model of literary-history digging."--Scott L. Malcomson, The Voice Literary Supplement "The main achievement of the author is a wealth of documentation of some rather odd-looking aspects of Roman culture... [Barton] is especially stimulating on the subject of the gaze in the Roman context, on the dynamics of watching."--James Davidson, Journal of Roman Studiesshow more

Back cover copy

This inquiry into the collective psychology of the ancient Romans speaks not about military conquest, sober law, and practical politics, but about extremes of despair, desire, and envy.show more

Table of contents

AcknowledgmentsIntroduction3The Gladiator1Despair11The Scandal of the Arena112Desire47Wine without Water47The Monster3Fascination85A Vain, Barren, Exquisite Wasting854Envy (Part One)107Embracing the Monster1075Envy (Part Two)145Striking the Monster1456Conclusions176The Widening Gyre176Modern Works Cited191Index203show more