Citizens of Discord: Rome and Its Civil Wars

Citizens of Discord: Rome and Its Civil Wars

Citizens of Discord: Rome and Its Civil Wars

Citizens of Discord: Rome and Its Civil Wars

Synopsis

Civil wars, more than other wars, sear themselves into the memory of societies that suffer them. This is particularly true at Rome, where in a period of 150 years the Romans fought four epochal wars against themselves. The present volume brings together exciting new perspectives on the subject by an international group of distinguished contributors. The basis of the investigation is broad, encompassing literary texts, documentary texts, and material culture, spanning the Greek and Roman worlds. Attention is devoted not only to Rome's four major conflicts from the period between the 80s BC and AD 69, but the frame extends to engage conflicts both previous and much later, as well as post-classical constructions of the theme of civil war at Rome. Divided into four sections, thefirst ("Beginnings, Endings") addresses the basic questions of when civil war began in Rome and when it ended. "Cycles" is concerned with civil war as a recurrent phenomenon without end. "Aftermath" focuses on attempts to put civil war in the past, or, conversely, to claim the legacy of past civil wars, for better or worse. Finally, the section "Afterlife" provides views of Rome's civil wars from more distant perspectives, from those found in Augustan lyric and elegy to those in much laterpost-classical literary responses. As a whole, the collection sheds new light on the ways in which the Roman civil wars were perceived, experienced, and represented across a variety of media and historical periods.

Excerpt

The essays included in this volume all derive from a conference held at Amherst College and the University of Massachusetts Amherst in November 2007. We are grateful for the support of the departments of classics of UMass Amherst, Amherst College, Smith College, and Mt. Holyoke College; the Amherst College Lecture Fund and Faculty Research Awards Program; Joel Martin and Lee Edwards, present and former deans of humanities and fine arts, UMass Amherst; Paul Kostecki, vice provost for research, UMass Amherst; and the Loeb Classical Library Foundation. Geoff Sumi, Elizabeth Keitel, Richard Tarrant, and Chris Kraus served as respondents at the conference and subsequently shared their thoughts and questions with the contributors, for which generous service we thank them. in organizing the conference and preparing this volume we have benefited from the help of many, including Rex Wallace, Becky Sinos, Thalia Pandiri, Geoff Sumi, Lisa Marie Smith, Sarah Upton, Laurie Moran, Michelle Barron, Andrew Carroll, Patrick McGrath, Joanna Rifkin, Whitney Wade, Kathleen Coleman, John Bodel, and Corey Brennan. Jen Gerrish contributed editorial assistance. the work has been characterized always by concordia.

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