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Homer; Translated by Charles Stein
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Loot Price R430
Discovery Miles 4 300
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The Homeric text that we have is written in what became the
standard verse form for high-serious composition in the classical
world. Yet certain recent scholars have speculated that the oral
composition of the poem in its early form may have been written
with a phrase-by-phrase prosody, not the formal line that
culminated the tradition. The prosody borrowed from the Black
Mountain poets harken back to this possibility, and thus allow the
translator to find unexpected links to the earliest strata of
Homeric verse. The famous episodes - the sirens, Scylla and
Charibdys, the Cyclops - are translated with great energy and
sympathy, making the 'action' aspects of the poem palpably
accessible and engaging.The second half of the poem - where
Odysseus, having returned to his native land, prepares to take
revenge on the wooers of his wife - is shown to have
extraordinarily subtle, 'novelistic' features, which are made
transparent in this translation. There is also a special feel for
the 'archaic' dimensions of Homer - the world of gods and their
complex relations to Fate and Being that other translators tend to
de-emphasize in order to make the poem feel 'modern'. It is often
claimed that the Homeric world excludes or minimizes the 'magical'
and is for this reason fit to be the first great work of the modern
world. The translator takes the opposite approach: the spirit of a
universe prior to the classical shines through everywhere. Stein
feels we read Homer not only to learn what the Greeks thought about
the gods - but to learn about the gods themselves!
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