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Abstract  

Although nature looms large throughout Homer’s Odyssey, literary critics have entirely neglected to discuss his construction of the natural world in this foundational Western work. This neglect might be the result of two factors: the blurred line between geographical and fantastical locales in Odysseus’ travels and the blurred line between natural forces and deities. This essay recognizes that Homer not only reconstructs the Mediterranean world in his epic through detailed references to weather, geology, plants, birds, and animals but also that his similes suggest a consciousness of inter-species relationships. Principally, however, this essay argues, as does William Cronon, that “relationships, processes, and systems are as ecological as they are cultural,” and that Odysseus’ response to nature may usefully be understood in relation to three ecocritical models: the anthropocentric or domination model, the stewardship model, and the biomorphic model. His exploitative and aggressive behavior toward the Cyclopes, Circe, and the cattle of the Sun is contrasted with his recognition upon his homecoming of his own animal nature and his appreciation of the agrarian and pastoral life. While the tradition of writing in The Odyssey genre has vigorously continued in Western literature, only recently have contemporary environmental writers moved toward a recognition of the threat of the anthropocentric perspective to the imperative of working toward the stewardship and biomorphic models.

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Introduction

Idyllic landscapes in antiquity: The Golden Age, Arcadia, and the locus amoenus

Acta Antiqua Academiae Scientiarum Hungaricae
Authors: Patricia Johnston and Sophia Papaioannou

In the Western literary tradition the concept of the Golden Age and its identification with a special location is as old as the earliest poetic compositions, for it features prominently in the 8th c. BCE didactic epic Works and Days by the Greek poet Hesiod. Filtered through the sophisticated and poetically-determined poetry of the Alexandrians (Theocritus, Aratus), the Golden Age, now linked to an idyllic pastoral landscape, becomes the centerpiece, the common point of reference of all ten poems that comprise Vergil’s earliest work, the Eclogues. In Vergil’s pastoral art the Golden Age is identified with Arcadia, a location allegedly evoking the Greek area at the center of the Peloponnese, proverbial for its rusticity and shunning of civilization, and as a result, free of all pretention. The fashioning, significance and transformation of the Arcadia theme in literature, both ancient and later, and the evolution of the Augustan model, is the topic of the present volume, the structure and objectives of which are detailed in this introductory chapter.

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A cikk azt a problémát vizsgálja konkrét szöveghely értelmezésével, hogyan teremthet lehetőséget gazdagító új olvasatok megfogalmazására régebbi irodalmi, esztétikai előfeltevéseink felülvizsgálata. Az Aeneis Nisus és Euryalus-epizódjában a szerző egy homérosi ihletésű katonai epizódban az epikus és heroikus világtól (a cikk szóhasználatában epikus kódtól) idegen elemekkel bővíti ki az elbeszélést. A szerelmi elégia nyelve és a görög fiúszerelem fogalma azonban feszültséget hoz a homérosi katonatörténetbe. Ennek eredményeképpen a részletet záró költői megszólalás és maga a történet között az interpretáció szempontjából termékeny feszültség alakul ki. A cikk amellett érvel, hogy ezt a feszültséget nem szabad eltüntetnie az inter pretációnak, helyette az egységesség követelményét érdemes újragondolni.

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If Liszt’s early work Don Sanche ou le Château d’Amour, that includes danced parts, is not taken into account, he never composed music for dance. In the twentieth century, however, the composer’s music became an interesting material for choreographers and dancers. My paper is focused on a choreographic interpretation of Liszt’s Dante Sonata, made by Frederick Ashton. This choreography was realized by Ashton in 1940 in London, in collaboration with Constant Lambert. Ashton’s Dante Sonata is an abstract and symbolic ballet. He created the association between dance and music on a relationship of correspondence point to point of the two languages and on a cultural and emotive communion with Liszt. My study wants to show what the Ashtonian choreography highlights: Liszt renews the traditional sonata form from its inside; he gives it a new lymph by making it go through a symbolic content; the symbolized literary content is the Dantesque medieval allegory of the Christian ascensional course transformed by Hugo in metaphor of the restless walk of the romantic man. So, Liszt invests the medieval epic literary model of the great themes of the Romantic generation and renews, under its influence, the sonata form.

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The structures, or architectural forms, can be very various. They are independent both as to text and tune, are inconcievable by lyrics or melody taken separately, have nothing to do with the conscious intention or representation of the singers themselves, and are spontaneously actualized during the singing. Due to such immaterial structuring possibilities, and using only the formal possibilities of the syntagmatic, in Romanian traditional/folk singing a single poetic text can receive 64 formal treatments/versions. For establishing the existence of these architectural variants I have started from observations such as the one belonging to Bartók, who noticed that Romanians had the peculiarity of singing the same verse four times. Other observations spoke about tree times repetitions of each verse, while in someother circumstances verses are repeated just once. If we logically establish all possible forms of sytagmatic repetitions we obtain this sum of 64 variants, which constitute the equally real and virtual being of each and any folk song. These structures and architectures were very important to the old, traditional/peasant aesthetics, and their actualization was essential espetially to ceremonial repertories such as Winter-Solstice-Songs (carols). By giving up devices such as verse repetition and stanzaic refrains, and by shortening the time for performing the epic songs of the peasant carol, what was lost was the immaterial aspect of unconscious constructing, the abysmal pleasure for implied mathematics, was lost one of the essences of the sacred experience, which is -as philosophers put it - 'experiencing the Number'.

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On 18 March 1893 the opera Toldi by Ödön (Edmund von) Mihalovich (1842–1929) was premiered at the Royal Hungarian Opera House in Budapest. Three month later Ferenc Erkel, founder and single most important composer of the Hungarian national opera died. One of the funeral speeches at his burial was held by Mihalovich. This gesture was meant as a symbolic mounting of the guard on the national operatic scene. However, Toldi, written on a libretto based on Toldi szerelme (Toldi’s Love), the middle epic of János Arany’s Toldi trilogy, proved to be unsuccesful. It was staged again as Toldi’s Love in 1895 after a thorough revision. One cannot overlook the fact that in the newly composed third act Mihalovich wanted to write the loyalist counterpart of the conflictuous third act in Erkel’s Bánk bán. The paper discusses the question whether the first and only opera on a Hungarian text by the solid Wagnerite Mihalovich could at the time fulfil the official national expectations and become the representative national opera of the Millennium, that is, the Thousand Year Jubilee of the Carpathian Basin’s conquest by the Hungarian tribes, celebrated in 1896.

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The study examines one of the shield-descriptions of Valerius Flaccus’ Argonautica. Its main aim is to demonstrate that Valeris Flaccus altered Canthus’ story in accordance with his literary purposes. The poet depicts the shield of Canthus in the catalogue of the Argonauts mentioning that the hero had inherited this famous shield from his father, Abas, albeit according to the mythology he is not known to have any shield. The paper displays how many other Abases there were in Greek mythology and in Roman literature having a shield and it is argued that Valerius Flaccus was influenced by the coincidence of names and transformed the original story of Canthus (which can be read in Apollonius Rhodius) in order to imitate his literary models: Vergil, Ovid and the Iliad. Furthermore, the author rewrites the story of Canthus so that the Argonaut can be paralleled with Patroclus. Consequently, Canthus must be an important person of the epic which is highlighted by Valerius Flaccus in several ways and his shield has to have a literary function.

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Jelen tanulmányban az Apollónios Rhodios Argonautikájának harmadik könyvében ábrázolt Médeia- alak értelmezéséhez kívánunk újabb szemponttal hozzájárulni. Bemutatjuk és elemezzük a hősnőben fellángoló érzelem ábrázolására ható, a klasszikus attikai tragikus hagyományra, elsősorban Euripidésre viszszavezethető motívumokat. Az apollóniosi Médeia-kép lehetséges irodalmi előzményeinek körét Euripidés Phaidra-alakjával kívánjuk gyarapítani (Eur. Hipp. 373–524). Feltárjuk a két hősnőben lelki gyötrelmet okozó érzelem kialakulásának állomásait és mozgatóit, illetve kitérünk néhány további motívumra, melyek szintén erősítik a Hippolytos és az eposz kapcsolatát.

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Harms's case "The Blue Notebook No 10", which is a cisfinite miniature about the infinity of human non-existence, is seen by the author as an a-rational (IT = NON/IT) creative inovation: the defictionalisation of the narrative convention of the character, up to the point of cisfinite zero.      Particular attention is drawn to the polemical intertextual "collisions" (The OBERIU Declaration) of Harms's reddish-brown man with a canonized pattern of the classic Russian realistic (and socrealistic) characterisation (the 'outer' and the 'inner portrait'; procedures, actions). Simultaneously, the 'demimesis' of the reddish-brown man destroys the traditional mimetic model of character structuralisation of the European romanesque production. Naturally, with a strong emphasis on the realistic model, which has already become an object of destruction - in the dadadistic avant-garde palimpsests (poeme simultane, dadaistic collage and photomontage, ready-made) as in the romanesque fiction of, for example, F. Kaf-ka, J. Joyce, W. Faulkner, J. P. Sartre, A. Camus.         As the defictionalisation of the character the universal epic literary convention in "The Blue Notebook No 10" becomes metapoetic DEFICTION/DEMIMESIS of the character as described by Aristotle in his Poetics.

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At the beginning of the 19th century, when the poets wanted to create the national epic poem of Hungarians, they followed the Aeneid; at the end of the 18th century, when the agricultural reform was established in Hungary under the Habsburgs, the poets wrote agricultural poems in Vergilian form and translated and modernized his Georgics. The world of Vergil depicted in the Eclogues and in the Georgics became the idealized Arcadia, and poets and writers or the aristocracy — influenced by Vergil — wanted to create their own Arcadia. The pastoral theme and the bucolical forms were very popular in Hungarian literature of this period, at the end of the 18th century. The poets had pastoral names, and very different topics were expressed in eclogues (e.g. actual events of politics). In the first half of the 20th century Vergil had a new renaissance connected to the bimillennium of his birth. And this renaissance reached the most expressive element of the presence of Vergil’s Bucolics in the poetry of Miklós Radnóti (1909–1944), whose eclogues are the most tragic expression of cruelty of war. My paper focuses on the influence of Virgil’s Bucolics in Radnóti’s poetry, but his examples can attest to the deep influence of Vergil on Hungarian literature.

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