THE SHADOW OF CREUSA: Negotiating Fictionality in Late Antique Latin Literature

Classics for All Reviews

By Anders Cullhed (tr. by Michael Knight)

De Gruyter (2015) h/b 703pp £97.99 (ISBN 9783110310863)

Imagine that you are a writer and your aim is to set up a school to promote the teaching of Christian religion; that you live in the Roman Empire at some point between the second and the fifth century AD, that you are a newly converted Christian who has been educated by pagan teachers and, therefore, your education has been essentially formed on the works of Homer, Cicero, Horace, Ovid and Vergil. How would you now confront the classics? Would you be a ‘traditionalist’ who repudiates the value of pagan literature, or an ‘innovator’ who finds a compromise and negotiates ideas and themes of pagan culture by means of allegorical interpretations? These are the problems of ‘fictionality’ in late antique Latin literature at the heart of Cullhed’s investigation.

C. covers about three centuries of late…

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