Spartacus : Film and History

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This is the first book systematically to analyze Kirk Douglas' and Stanley Kubrick's depiction of the slave revolt led by Spartacus from different historical, political, and cinematic perspectives. * Examines the film's use of ancient sources, the ancient historical contexts, the political significance of the film, the history of its censorship and restoration, and its place in film history. * Includes the most important passages from ancient authors' reports of the slave revolt in more

Product details

  • Paperback | 280 pages
  • 152.4 x 223.5 x 22.9mm | 453.6g
  • John Wiley and Sons Ltd
  • Blackwell Publishing Ltd
  • Oxford, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 23
  • 1405131810
  • 9781405131810
  • 928,429

Review quote

“Both the range of positions and also the excellent bibliographic notes (especially from Winkler and Ward) provide a fine basis for any student to develop their knowledge of the original events, the making of the movie, or the political and cultural context of the time." (Art & Archaeology, 2010) “Like [Winkler's] volumes on Gladiator and Troy, [Spartacus] has fascinating information and impassioned arguments." (Cineaste, Spring 2009) “The 11 essays by eight authors examine in depth the iconic classic from a variety of fascinating historical, political, and cinematic perspectives." (Choice) "I thought i was becoming a little bored with Spartacus until I read this book ... it made me remember why I found the subject so fascinating in the first place. This volume is invaluable for everyone interested in epic movies, the Roman Republic, the Cold War or the process of the appropriation of rebels." (Bryn Mawr Classical Review) “Winkler's Spartacus: Film and History breaks new ground … [an] invaluable volume." (New England Classical Journal) “An outstanding and innovative volume that will be very useful to teachers and students of Classics and Cinema." (Classical Outlook) "As a study of a particular age and country in cinema history, the book does indeed make a contribution." (Scholia Reviews)show more

About Martin M. Winkler

Martin M. Winkler is Professor of Classics at George Mason University. Most recently he has edited the essay collections Troy: From Homer's Iliad to Hollywood Epic (Blackwell, 2006), Gladiator: Film and History (Blackwell, 2004), and Classical Myth and Culture in the Cinema (2001).show more

Back cover copy

Stanley Kubrick's epic film "Spartacus" has enjoyed iconic status in cinema history and strongly influenced modern perspectives on ancient Rome. This book examines the film from different historical, political, and cinematic perspectives. The chief ancient sources on the slave revolt led by Spartacus are included in translation. Contributors explore the film's representation of history, the political climate at the time of its making, the history of its production, censorship, and restoration, its place in film history, and its enduring appeal. For the first time, the book offers suggestions for a new version of the film that comes even closer to the filmmakers' original intent than the restoration currently more

Table of contents

List of Plates. Notes on Contributors. Introduction (Martin M. Winkler, George Mason University). 1. Who Killed the Legend of Spartacus? Production, Censorship, and Reconstruction of Stanley Kubrick's Epic Film (Duncan L. Cooper, Independent scholar). 2. Dalton Trumbo vs. Stanley Kubrick: The Historical Meaning of Spartacus (Duncan L. Cooper, Independent scholar). 3. Spartacus, Exodus, and Dalton Trumbo: Managing Ideologies of War (Frederick Ahl, Cornell University). 4. Spartacus: History and Histrionics (Allen M. Ward, University of Connecticut). 5. Spartacus, Rebel Against Rome (C. A. Robinson, Jr). 6. Training + Tactics = Roman Battle Success: From Spartacus: The Illustrated Story of the Motion Picture Production. 7. The Character of Marcus Licinius Crassus (W. Jeffrey Tatum, Florida State University). 8. Roman Slavery and the Class Divide: Why Spartacus Lost (Michael Parenti). 9. The Holy Cause of Freedom: American Ideals in Spartacus (Martin M. Winkler, George Mason University). 10. Spartacus and the Stoic Ideal of Death (Francisco Javier Tovar Paz, University of Extremadura). 11. "Culturally Significant and Not Just Simple Entertainment": History and the Marketing of Spartacus (Martin M. Winkler, George Mason University). The Principal Ancient Sources on Spartacus. 1. Plutarch, Crassus 8-11 and Pompey 21.1-2. 2. Appian, The Civil Wars 1.14.111 and 116-121.1. 3. Sallust, The Histories 3.96 and 98 (M) = 3.64 and 66 (McG). 4. Livy, Periochae 95-97. 5. Velleius Paterculus, Compendium of Roman History 2.30.5-6. 6. Florus, Epitome of Roman History 2.8 (3.20). 7. Frontinus, Strategies 1.5.20-22 and 7.6, 2.4.7 and 5.34. 8. Orosius, History against the Pagans 5.24.1-8 and 18-19. Bibliography. more
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