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Title: Saints and Symposiasts: The Literature of Food and the Symposium in Greco-Roman and Early Christian Culture
Author: Konig, Jason
Publisher: Cambridge University Press; Publication Date: 2012
Hardcover; ISBN: 9780521886857
Volumes: 1; Pages: 430
List Price in Cloth: $110.00 Our price: $95.99
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Greek traditions of writing about food and the symposium had a long and rich afterlife in the first to fifth centuries CE, in both Greco-Roman and early Christian culture. This book provides an account of the history of the table-talk genre, derived from Plato's Symposium and other classical texts, focusing among other writers on Plutarch, Athenaeus, Methodius and Macrobius. It deals with the representation of transgressive, degraded, eccentric types of eating and drinking in Greco-Roman and early Christian prose narrative texts, focusing especially on the Letters of Alciphron, the Greek and Roman novels, especially Apuleius, the Apocryphal Acts of the Apostles and the early saints' lives. It argues that writing about consumption and conversation continued to matter: these works communicated distinctive ideas about how to talk and how to think, distinctive models of the relationship between past and present, distinctive and often destabilising visions of human identity and holiness.Table of ContentsPart I. Conversation and Community: 1. Locating the symposium2. Voice and community in sympotic literature3. Plutarch4. Athenaeus5. Early Christian commensality and the literary symposium6. Methodius7. Sympotic culture and sympotic literature in Late Antiquity8. MacrobiusPart II. Consumption and Transgression: 9. Philosophers and parasites10. Food and the symposium in the Greek and Latin novels11. Food and fasting in the Apocryphal Acts12. Food and fasting in early Christian hagiographyConclusion.