The Parallel Worlds of Classical Art and Text [Paperback]

Jocelyn Penny Small (Author)

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ISBN: 9780521733069 | Published by: Cambridge University Press | Year of Publication: 2003 | Language: English 253p, 74 b/w illus

The Parallel Worlds of Classical Art and Text


We are so used to seeing text accompanied by pictures that we perhaps inadvertently assume that this was always the case. However, with reference to art from archaic Greece to the late Roman Republic, Small argues that `artists illustrate stories, not texts'. Since the earliest known illustrated text is a papyri dating to the 2nd century AD, it seems reasonable to conclude that artists worked independently from writers and drew on oral traditions rather than textual sources for their creations. Small believes that representations on vases for example should not be used to reconstruct lost literary works, but should be viewed as a separate cultural creation, albeit set within a broad literary and cultural context.

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