Poetry Madness
 
 

Special Offers see all

Enter to WIN a $100 Credit

Subscribe to PowellsBooks.news
for a chance to win.
Privacy Policy

Visit our stores


    Recently Viewed clear list


    Interviews | March 9, 2015

    Rhianna Walton: IMG Erik Larson: The Powells.com Interview



    Erik LarsonI've been a fan of Erik Larson's riveting brand of narrative history for years, and his latest book, Dead Wake: The Last Crossing of the Lusitania,... Continue »
    1. $19.60 Sale Hardcover add to wish list

    spacer
Qualifying orders ship free.
$30.95
New Hardcover
Ships in 1 to 3 days
Add to Wishlist
available for shipping or prepaid pickup only
Available for In-store Pickup
in 7 to 12 days
Qty Store Section
2 Remote Warehouse World History- England General

More copies of this ISBN

Homer's Turk: How Classics Shaped Ideas of the East

by

Homer's Turk: How Classics Shaped Ideas of the East Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

A seventeenth-century English traveler to the Eastern Mediterranean would have faced a problem in writing about this unfamiliar place: how to describe its inhabitants in a way his countrymen would understand? In an age when a European education meant mastering the Classical literature of Greece and Rome, he would naturally turn to touchstones like the Iliad to explain the exotic customs of Ottoman lands. His Turk would have been Homer's Turk.

An account of epic sweep, spanning the Crusades, the Indian Raj, and the postwar decline of the British Empire, Homer's Turk illuminates how English writers of all eras have relied on the Classics to help them understand the world once called "the Orient." Ancient Greek and Roman authors, Jerry Toner shows, served as a conceptual frame of reference over long periods in which trade, religious missions, and imperial interests shaped English encounters with the East. Rivaling the Bible as a widespread, flexible vehicle of Western thought, the Classics provided a ready model for portrayal and understanding of the Oriental Other. Such image-making, Toner argues, persists today in some of the ways the West frames its relationship with the Islamic world and the rising powers of India and China.

Discussing examples that range from Jacobean travelogues to Hollywood blockbusters, Homer's Turk proves that there is no permanent version of either the ancient past or the East in English writing--the two have been continually reinvented alongside each other.

Review:

"In this unusually accessible academic work, Cambridge classics fellow Toner explores how classical learning has affected English perceptions of the East. For centuries, travelers and historians from Britain drew upon Greek and Roman plays, poems, and histories as 'imaginative resources' for describing and trying to understand the cultures of Islam and 'The Orient' that seemed alien. Toner ranges widely, from medieval to contemporary sources, to prove his thesis, emphasizing histories, such as by Edward Gibbon, and travelogues, from both famous names like Sir Richard Francis Burton and T.E. Lawrence and less recognized writers like Lady Mary Wortley Montagu, perhaps the first secular European woman to chronicle Islamic practices. The concluding section considers the classics' ongoing relevance, from popular entertainments like The English Patient and 300 to the op-ed pages. Toner focuses on representations of the East, rather than the region itself, showing how 'the classical past has helped justify, sanction, and authenticate the English present,' while carefully distancing himself from Edward Said's Orientalism theory, criticizing it as overly simplistic. While Toner's argument is disappointingly modest in the end, the work makes a useful addition to understanding Western ideology and should appeal to academics and motivated laypeople alike." Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

Synopsis:

Spanning the Crusades, the Indian Raj, and the postwar decline of the British Empire, Homer's Turk illuminates how English writers of all eras have relied on Greek and Roman literature to help them understand the world once called "the Orient." Even today, the Classics frame the West's relationship with the Islamic world, India, and China.

About the Author

Jerry Toner is a Fellow at Hughes Hall at the University of Cambridge.

University of Cambridge

Product Details

ISBN:
9780674073142
Author:
Toner, Jerry
Publisher:
Harvard University Press
Author:
Toner, J. P.
Location:
Cambridge
Subject:
Middle East
Subject:
World History-Asia
Subject:
Great britain
Subject:
LITERARY CRITICISM / European/English, Irish, Scottish, Welsh
Subject:
LITERARY CRITICISM / Ancient & Classical
Subject:
History-Asia - General
Subject:
HISTORY / Middle East/General
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Cloth
Publication Date:
20130331
Binding:
HARDCOVER
Language:
English
Pages:
320
Dimensions:
8 x 6 in

Related Subjects

» History and Social Science » Europe » Great Britain » General History
» History and Social Science » Politics » General
» History and Social Science » World History » Ancient History
» History and Social Science » World History » Asia » General
» History and Social Science » World History » England » General
» History and Social Science » World History » Middle East
» Humanities » Literary Criticism » General

Homer's Turk: How Classics Shaped Ideas of the East New Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$30.95 In Stock
Product details 320 pages Harvard University Press - English 9780674073142 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "In this unusually accessible academic work, Cambridge classics fellow Toner explores how classical learning has affected English perceptions of the East. For centuries, travelers and historians from Britain drew upon Greek and Roman plays, poems, and histories as 'imaginative resources' for describing and trying to understand the cultures of Islam and 'The Orient' that seemed alien. Toner ranges widely, from medieval to contemporary sources, to prove his thesis, emphasizing histories, such as by Edward Gibbon, and travelogues, from both famous names like Sir Richard Francis Burton and T.E. Lawrence and less recognized writers like Lady Mary Wortley Montagu, perhaps the first secular European woman to chronicle Islamic practices. The concluding section considers the classics' ongoing relevance, from popular entertainments like The English Patient and 300 to the op-ed pages. Toner focuses on representations of the East, rather than the region itself, showing how 'the classical past has helped justify, sanction, and authenticate the English present,' while carefully distancing himself from Edward Said's Orientalism theory, criticizing it as overly simplistic. While Toner's argument is disappointingly modest in the end, the work makes a useful addition to understanding Western ideology and should appeal to academics and motivated laypeople alike." Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
"Synopsis" by , Spanning the Crusades, the Indian Raj, and the postwar decline of the British Empire, Homer's Turk illuminates how English writers of all eras have relied on Greek and Roman literature to help them understand the world once called "the Orient." Even today, the Classics frame the West's relationship with the Islamic world, India, and China.
spacer
spacer
  • back to top

FOLLOW US ON...

     
Powell's City of Books is an independent bookstore in Portland, Oregon, that fills a whole city block with more than a million new, used, and out of print books. Shop those shelves — plus literally millions more books, DVDs, and gifts — here at Powells.com.