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Frontiers of Pleasure: Models of Aesthetic Response in Archaic and Classical Greek Thought


Frontiers of Pleasure: Models of Aesthetic Response in Archaic and Classical Greek Thought Cover


Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Frontiers of Pleasure calls into question a number of influential modern notions regarding aesthetics by going back to the very beginnings of aesthetic thought in Greece and raising critical issues regarding conceptions of how one responds to the beautiful. Despite a recent rebirth of interest in aesthetics, extensive discussion of this key cluster of topics has been absent. Anastasia-Erasmia Peponi argues that although the Greek language had no formal term equivalent to the "aesthetic," the notion was deeply rooted in Greek thought. Her analysis centers on a dominant aspect of beauty--the aural--associated with a highly influential sector of culture that comprised both poetry and instrumental music, the "activity of the Muses," or mousikê. The main argument relies on a series of close readings of literary and philosophical texts, from Homer and Plato through Kant, Joyce, and Proust. Through detailed attention to such scenes as Odysseus' encounter with the Sirens and Hermes' playing of his lyre for his brother Apollo, she demonstrates that the most telling moments in the conceptualization of the aesthetic come in the Greeks' debates and struggles over intense models of auditory pleasure. Unlike current tendencies to treat poetry as an early, imperfect mode of meditating upon such issues, Peponi claims that Greek poetry and philosophy employed equally complex, albeit different, ways of articulating notions of aesthetic response. Her approach often leads her to partial or total disagreement with earlier interpretations of some of the most well-known Greek texts of the archaic and classical periods. Frontiers of Pleasure thus suggests an alternative mode of understanding aesthetics in its entirety, freed from some modern preconceptions that have become a hindrance within the field.

About the Author

Anastasia-Erasmia Peponi is Professor of Classics at Stanford University.

Table of Contents


1. Concepts and Terms

2. Tranquility

3. Weeping

4. Fusion

5. Eros I

6. Eros II

7. Coda



Product Details

Models of Aesthetic Response in Archaic and Classical Greek Thought
Peponi, Anastasia-erasm
Peponi, Anastasia-Erasmia
Peponi, Anastasia-Erasm
Peponi, Anatasia-Erasmia
Oxford University Press
Ancient - Greece
Classical Studies | Ancient Philosophy
World History-Ancient Near East
Publication Date:
4 illus.
6.3 x 9.3 x 0.7 in 0.85 lb

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Fiction and Poetry » Classics » General
Health and Self-Help » Health and Medicine » Medical Specialties
History and Social Science » World History » Ancient History
History and Social Science » World History » Ancient Near East
Humanities » Philosophy » Aesthetics
Humanities » Philosophy » General

Frontiers of Pleasure: Models of Aesthetic Response in Archaic and Classical Greek Thought New Hardcover
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Product details 224 pages Oxford University Press, USA - English 9780199798322 Reviews:
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