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South Africa, Greece, Rome
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Book description

How have ancient Greece and Rome intersected with South African histories? This book canvasses architecture, literature, visual arts and historical memory. Some of the most telling manifestations of classical reception in South Africa have been indirect, for example neo-classical architecture or retellings of mythical stories. Far from being the mere handmaiden of colonialism (and later apartheid), classical antiquity has enabled challenges to the South African establishment, and provided a template for making sense of cross-cultural encounters. Though access to classical education has been limited, many South Africans, black and white, have used classical frames of reference and drawn inspiration from the ancient Greeks and Romans. While classical antiquity may seem antithetical to post-apartheid notions of heritage, it deserves to be seen in this light. Museums, historical sites and artworks, up to the present day, reveal juxtapositions in which classical themes are integrated into South African pasts.

Reviews

'Grant Parker’s edited volume, South Africa, Greece, Rome: Classical Confrontations, is the most substantial work to date on the interaction of the ancient world of Classical antiquity with the southern tip of the African continent. While not exhaustive, the work is the most comprehensive and varied so far, offering, in Parker’s words, a ‘collage’ (491-495) of different images, voices, and vying perspectives on engagement with the Classics that are all as contradictory and confrontational as the country of South Africa often is.'

Source: Bryn Mawr Classical Review

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