Madness Transformed : A Reading of Ovid's Metamorphoses
Madness Transformed: A Reading of Ovid's Metamorphoses is one of the most comprehensive studies available in English of one of the most majestic and perennially appealing of Roman epics. Students and readers of all levels, from high school Latinists through seasoned Ovidians, will find something of use here as Frantantuono analyzes the work scene by scene, guiding the reader to a deeper understanding of this densely allusive poem that rivals even Virgil's Aeneid.
- Hardback | 514 pages
- 154.94 x 231.14 x 40.64mm | 2,426.71g
- 12 May 2011
- Lexington Books
- Lanham, MD, United States
There is much to recommend this book, especially the many cross references to Vergil, coming as they do from the pen of a first rate Vergilian scholar. Fratantuono's commentary reminds us of the immense richness of Ovid's poem and shows us intertextual relations that only a very close reading can reveal. The narrative flows nicely, so much so that it becomes difficult to set the book aside. Indeed, Fratantuono's prose seems to have captured some of the charm and even humor of Ovid. All in all, this is a wonderful, transformative book. -- Blaise Nagy, College of the Holy Cross Lee Fratantuono applies his detailed, subtle, and often original analyses of Virgil's Aeneid to Ovid's Metamorphoses, demonstrating along the way their close intertextual relationship. In so doing he offers a fresh perspective on one of the most influential works of Roman literature. Ovid's vision is at once emulation, rival, and extension of his master Virgil's, and his epic of the whole universe rounds out the image of Augustan Rome as the divinely directed plan of a chosen people destined to bring order out of chaos in the cosmic, political, and poetic realms. -- Robert Dupree, The University of Dallas Fratantuono's careful and sensitive reading of the Metamorphoses is full of illuminating insights into Ovid's 'tissue of allusions' and his reflections on the Augustan era. This study offers the most comprehensive commentary yet on the epic's structure, its relationship to Vergil's Aeneid, and Ovid's play with his literary inheritance. -- Shadi Bartsch, The University of Chicago Fratantuono (Ohio Wesleyan Univ.) derives his title from Virgil's Aeneid--words spoken by Jupiter proclaiming an era of peace and prophesying that the "impious rage" and frenzy of war will cease--all gainsaid by the last lines of the poem. Offering a coherent sequel to his Madness Unchained: A Reading of Virgil's Aeneid (CH, Feb'08, 45-3052), the author explicates, scene by scene, Ovid's "perpetual song." Close study reveals the Augustan-era epic as a rich, bold answer to both the Aeneid and the Odes of Horace, one that includes subtle cross-referencing bows to Lucretius and Lucan. It is a work of rivalry, but writ large on a cosmic stage. In Ovid's world of imminent chaos, "madness is the possession of everyone," with no foreseeable redemption. Fratantuono looks at each tale of wondrous transformation and ironic Ovidian commentary in light of the several momentous turning points in the reign of Caesar Augustus. Ovid's lengthy poem of dactylic hexameters (i.e., not elegiac) here enjoys a fresh perspective, rounding out both the Roman Republic and the Roman Empire as the divinely prescribed plan destined to create a "new world order." Dense, challenging, scholarly, the volume is graced with an annotated bibliography and a detailed index. CHOICE Fratauntuono has many original ideas. He mostly points out parallels between the texts and comments on Ovid's attempts to surpass his predecessor. Several connections between characters in Virgil and Ovid are particularly convincing. The discussion of Virgil's Camilla and Ovid's Atalanta, for instance, is quite compelling...Madness Transformed is a unique book, a hybrid commentary and monograph. Bryn Mawr Classical Review
About Lee Fratantuono
Lee Fratantuono is William Francis Whitlock Professor of Latin at Ohio Wesleyan University.
Table of contents
Chapter 1 Ad Lectorem Chapter 2 Introduction Chapter 3 I: Into New Bodies Chapter 4 II: The Palace of the Sun Chapter 5 III: And Now the God Confessed Chapter 6 IV: But Not the Daughter of Minyas Chapter 7 V: While the Danaean Hero ... Chapter 8 VI: Tritonia Had Listened Chapter 9 VII: And Now the Minyans Chapter 10 VIII: Now the East Wind Fell Chapter 11 IX: The Neptunian Hero ... Chapter 12 X: And Then, Veiled in Saffron ... Chapter 13 XI: While with Such a Song ... Chapter 14 XII: Priam, Unknowing ... Chapter 15 XIII: The Leaders Sat Chapter 16 XIV: And Now Etna ... Chapter 17 XV: Meanwhile There is Sought ... Chapter 18 Select Bibliography