Google full text of our books:


Epic and Empire:
Politics and Generic Form from Virgil to Milton
David Quint

Paperback | 1993 | $56.00 | £46.95 | ISBN: 9780691015200
448 pp. | 6 x 9 1/4 | 1 fig.
Add to Shopping Cart

| Table of Contents

Google full text of this book:

Alexander the Great, according to Plutarch, carried on his campaigns a copy of the Iliad, kept alongside a dagger; on a more pronounced ideological level, ancient Romans looked to the Aeneid as an argument for imperialism. In this major reinterpretation of epic poetry beginning with Virgil, David Quint explores the political context and meanings of key works in Western literature. He divides the history of the genre into two political traditions: the Virgilian epics of conquest and empire that take the victors' side (the Aeneid itself, Camoes's Lusíadas, Tasso's Gerusalemme liberata) and the countervailing epic of the defeated and of republican liberty (Lucan's Pharsalia, Ercilla's Araucana, and d'Aubigné's Les tragiques). These traditions produce opposing ideas of historical narrative: a linear, teleological narrative that belongs to the imperial conquerors, and an episodic and open-ended narrative identified with "romance," the story told of and by the defeated.

Quint situates Paradise Lost and Paradise Regained within these rival traditions. He extends his political analysis to the scholarly revival of medieval epic in the late eighteenth and nineteenth centuries and to Sergei Eisenstein's epic film, Alexander Nevsky. Attending both to the topical contexts of individual poems and to the larger historical development of the epic genre, Epic and Empire provides new models for exploring the relationship between ideology and literary form.

Table of Contents:

Introduction 3
Pt. 1 Epic and the Winners 19
1 Epic and Empire: Versions of Actium 21
2 Repetition and Ideology in the Aeneid 50
Pt. 2 Epic and the Losers 97
3 The Epic Curse and Camoes' Adamastor 99
4 Epics of the Defeated: The Other Tradition of Lucan, Ercilla, and d'Aubigne 131
Pt. 3 Tasso and Milton 211
5 Political Allegory in the Gerusalemme liberata 213
6 Tasso, Milton, and the Boat of Romance 248
7 Paradise Lost and the Fall of the English Commonwealth 268
8 David's Census: Milton's Politics and Paradise Regained 325
Pt. 4 A Modern Epilogue 341
9 Ossian, Medieval "Epic," and Eisenstein's Alexander Nevsky 343
Notes to the Chapters 369
Index 427

Other Princeton books authored or coauthored by David Quint:


Subject Areas:

  • For hardcover/paperback orders in United States, Canada, Latin America, Asia, and Australia

 Paperback : $56.00 ISBN: 9780691015200

Add to shopping cart
View contents of your shopping cart

  • For hardcover/paperback orders in Europe, Africa, the Middle East, India, and Pakistan

 Paperback  £46.95 ISBN: 9780691015200

Add to shopping cart
View contents of your shopping cart

Prices subject to change without notice

File created: 7/11/2017

Questions and comments to:
Princeton University Press

New Book E-mails
New In Print
PUP Blog
Princeton APPS
Sample Chapters
Princeton Legacy Library
Exam/Desk Copy
Recent Awards
Princeton Shorts
Freshman Reading
PUP Europe
About Us
Contact Us
PUP Home

Bookmark and Share 
Send me emails
about new books in:
Comparative Literature
More Choices