We are all classicists—we come into touch with the classics on a daily basis: in our culture, politics, medicine, architecture, language, and literature. What are the true roots of these influences, however, and how do our interpretations of these aspects of the classics differ from their original reality? This introduction to the classics begins with a visit to the British Museum to view the frieze which once decorated the Apollo Temple a Bassae. Through these sculptures, John Henderson and Mary Beard prompt us to consider the significance of the study of Classics as a means of discovery and enquiry, its value in terms of literature, philosophy, and culture, its source of imagery, and the reasons for the continuation of these images into and beyond the twentieth century. Designed for the general reader and student alike, A Very Short Introduction to Classics challenges listeners to adopt a fresh approach to the Classics as a major cultural influence, both in the ancient world and twentieth-century—emphasizing the continuing need to understand and investigate this enduring subject.
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About the Authors
John S. Henderson received his PhD from Yale University and is now a professor of anthropology at Cornell University, where he teaches both anthropology and archaeology. He has had many years of experience in Mexico and the rest of Central America and has also conducted field work in the United States, Peru, Cyprus, and Turkey.
Mary Beard, a professor of classics at Cambridge University, is the author of the bestselling SPQR and Women & Power and the National Book Critics Circle Award–nominated Confronting the Classics. She is a regular contributor to the New York Review of Books and a popular blogger and television personality.
About Julia Whelan
Julia Whelan is a novelist, screenwriter, lifelong actor, and multiple award-winning audiobook narrator. She graduated with a degree in English and creative writing from Middlebury College and Oxford University. She is a former child actor who has appeared in multiple films and television shows.