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Sappho Is Burning download ebook

by Page duBois

Sappho Is Burning download ebook
ISBN:
0226167550
ISBN13:
978-0226167558
Author:
Page duBois
Publisher:
University of Chicago Press; 1 edition (December 1, 1995)
Language:
Pages:
213 pages
ePUB:
1351 kb
Fb2:
1460 kb
Other formats:
lit lrf mobi doc
Category:
History & Criticism
Subcategory:
Rating:
4.5

In Sappho is Burning, duBois reads Sappho as a disruptive figure at the very origin of our story of Western civilization.

In Sappho is Burning, duBois reads Sappho as a disruptive figure at the very origin of our story of Western civilization.

Books by Page duBois. Showing 29 distinct works. The Love Songs of Sappho: Translated with an Essay by Paul Roche by. Sappho, Paul Roche (Translator).

Discover new books on Goodreads. See if your friends have read any of Page duBois's books. Page duBois’s Followers (2). Page duBois.

1 quote from Page duBois: 'Polytheism may be more consonant with contemporary life, its mixed populations, and its recognition of psychic complexity and interdependence, than a rigorous Protestant monotheism. Polytheism may be more consonant with contemporary life, its mixed populations, and its recognition of psychic complexity and interdependence, than a rigorous Protestant monotheism. Page duBois, A Million and One Gods. Books by Page duBois. See a Problem? We’d love your help.

To know all we know about Sappho is to know little. Author of the book in this video: Page DuBois. The book in this video is published by: University Of Chicago Press. We do not own, nor claim ownership of any images used in this video. Her poetry, dating from the seventh century . comes to us in fragments, her biography as speculation. To know all we know about Sappho is to know little. How is it then, Page duBois asks, that this poet has come to signify so much?

Page DuBois is professor of classics and comparative literature at the University of California, San Diego. She is known for her work in Ancient Greek literature, feminist theory and psychoanalysis.

Page DuBois is professor of classics and comparative literature at the University of California, San Diego. DuBois received her BA from Stanford University, and her PhD from the University of California at Berkley. She is now professor of classics and comparative literature at the University of California, San Diego, where she is part of the literature department and the Center for Hellenic Studies.

To know all we know about Sappho is to know little. Her poetry, dating from the seventh century B.C.E., comes to us in fragments, her biography as speculation. How is it then, Page duBois asks, that this poet has come to signify so much? Sappho Is Burning offers a new reading of this archaic lesbian poet that acknowledges the poet's distance and difference from us and stresses Sappho's inassimilability into our narratives about the Greeks, literary history, philosophy, the history of sexuality, the psychoanalytic subject.In Sappho is Burning, duBois reads Sappho as a disruptive figure at the very origin of our story of Western civilization. Sappho is beyond contemporary categories, inhabiting a space outside of reductively linear accounts of our common history. She is a woman, but also an aristocrat, a Greek, but one turned toward Asia, a poet who writes as a philosopher before philosophy, a writer who speaks of sexuality that can be identified neither with Michel Foucault's account of Greek sexuality, nor with many versions of contemporary lesbian sexuality. She is named as the tenth muse, yet the nine books of her poetry survive only in fragments. She disorients, troubles, undoes many certitudes in the history of poetry, the history of philosophy, the history of sexuality. DuBois argues that we need to read Sappho again.
Reviews:
  • Bludworm
a very important book of knowing sappho.
  • Malaris
The book was advertised as having some underlining - which was true - but it reinforced one of the author's themes which is that history is always read indirectly through a number of influences. The unknown previous owner who occasionally interrupted my attention was an amusing reminder of how true that is. I find duBois informative, thoughtful, and slyly amusing. I ordered the book looking for more information on Sappho and gained a wealth of information on many related subjects. Page duBois is currently my favorite writer.
  • Sharpmane
In between Homer and the Classical age there was Sappho. This historical positioning is essential to understanding her, as she is the predominant literary figure between the epics of Homer and the later writers of the Classical age.
Obviously she did not exist in a cultural vacuum, her contemporary, Alcaeus of Mytilene is also known to have been a great poet, he actually flatters her in one of his poems, but by all later accounts, the writers who quote her, and her influence on later poets, even as late as during the time of the Roman Empire, make it clear that she was the undisputed genius of her age. Genius does not begin to cover her outstanding contribution: She stands alone in ancient culture; there were no Sapphos in Rome, so we pretty much have to wait until modern times in the West to see a woman of such intellectual and artistic transcendence.
Most of what we have from the ancient Greeks and Romans has come down to us in fragmentary conditions. The merit of du Bois is in reading the fragments in a totally refreshing manner, which by the way, was surely the way they were regarded in Sappho's own time when the poems were complete: Each word and syllable is valuable, and she magnifies them for us through the readings of excellent translations, "to read the minimal signs of the fragment with a maximum of energy" as she explains is an idea that was suggested to her by Nietzsche when he referred to Roman poetry, but that she found very useful in reading Sappho. Even those of us who are not familiar with Greek can fully appreciate the work of the poet by applying this method. In an age when all books were manuscripts, most intellectual history was memorized, and recited, every word carried weight, hence the importance of fragmentary remains. Sappho is clearly part of that ancient tradition, and in her day the importance of each word and syllable was much more dramatic than it is in ours, as we are much more familiar with novels as a literary vehicle than poetry.
The chapter "The Aesthetics of the fragment" is a revelation. Here du Bois analyses the words, syllables and metaphors and makes the fragments come to life, and reveal both beauty and an individual, unique way of seeing and feeling. Her sensitive, profound understanding of the beauty of the original transpires throughout, and we really get close enough to understand why this poet was so significant to all poets, and why she was endlessly quoted. Sappho's understanding of sound and the beauty of her metaphor makes her fragments unique jewels that still shine for us today, surely there can be no better compliment for an author. What emerges is clearly a passionate, talented and particularly gifted writer that in a few words can conjure the magic and allure of intense emotion. I for one, feel it essential, after reading this book, to read all that has survived from this poet. This book made me undertand that Sappho was a Michelangelo of words, she constructed beauty so well, that even in pieces her work manages to move and evoke, above all to make us see it her way: through the object of her love or desire.
Page du Bois is not easy to read. Her sentences are charged with thoughts and different, sometimes conflicting viewpoints simultaneously, she quotes an endless amount of erudite investigations and translations, her erudite discourse is at times hard to follow, each chapter contains enough material for a book, but she is always consistently inspiring and exciting, more importantly she really understands her subject well and conveys an utterly fascinating artist in a new light for our time. She illustrates in extensively detailed arguments how Sappho was transgressive, as being a woman, a lover of women, and a poet, she uses language in a completely different manner from the men that preceeded or followed her. The comparisons with Homer are excellent ways of making the point, but she also illustrates how Sappho challenges the whole intellectual construction, of her time and later generations of male-centered western culture, right down to our own modern times: the argument against the abscence of Sappho in Foucault's "History of Sexuality" is particularly enlightening in the chapter "Sappho in the history of Sexuality".
This book is an excellent introduction to one of the most significant literary figures of all time. It also illustrates how our understanding and perception of women in a male dominated culture had been distorted in Sappho's time, and continued to be distorted through the centuries, thus making it an important contribution to women studies as well.
  • Jogrnd
Sappho of Lesbos, appropriated in modern times as a classical literary progenitor of sexual transgression, lived and wrote in the 7th century B.C.E. Apart from that fact, however, little is known of her life or the circumstances in which she wrote and performed her poetry. Indeed, the poetry itself exists only in fragments. In the words of Page duBois, the author of this thought-provoking collection of essays, "[s]he is not a person, not even a character in a drama or a fiction, but a set of texts gathered in her name."
"Sappho is Burning" presents a series of close, subtle readings of Sappho's poetry, readings which present a powerful, disruptive challenge to the traditional Classicist's view of Greek antiquity. Writing in the period between Homer and the so-called "Golden Age of Greece", Sappho's "lyrical, sensual, emotionally laden textuality" undermines the austerity of Plato and other writers of the ancient Greek canon, disrupting prevailing views of cultural wholeness and opening a space for difference at the origins of Western civilization.
While "Sappho is Burning" is undermined by the author's own propensity for self-characterization ("I am a psychoanalytic female subject, an academic, a Marxist historicist feminist classicist, split, gender-troubled") and occasionally lapses into the thickets of Lacanian jargon, these shortcomings are overcome by the brilliant insights of four of the essays: "Sappho's Body-in-Pieces", "Sappho in the Text of Plato", "Helen", and "Sappho in the History of Sexuality". In each of these essays, duBois, through close readings of the texts of Sappho and others, persuasively establishes a number of counter-readings to Classicist orthodoxy and, perhaps more significantly, inscribes Sappho in the history of ancient Greece, the history of Western sexuality, and the psychoanalytic history of the development of subjective identity. The ultimate effect is to cause the careful reader to re-examine received notions of the origins of Western thought and to recognize that "[t]o begin the history of the West with classical Greece and with the philosophers is a polemical choice."