The Aesthetics and Politics of Inscriptions in Imperial Greek Literature

Zadorozhny, AV ORCID: 0000-0002-5069-4739
(2018) The Aesthetics and Politics of Inscriptions in Imperial Greek Literature. In: The Materiality of Text - Placement, Perception and Presence of Inscribed Texts in Classical Antiquity. Brill studies in Greek and Roman Epigraphy, 11 . Brill,Leiden, 48 - 68.

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The aim of the paper is to examine socio-cultural assumptions behind the perception of epigraphic writing among the pepaideumenoi of the empire in the second century CE, and, relatedly, to outline the ideologies of Greek epigraphic writtenness through close readings of select key passages from authors of the Second Sophistic. In the first section, the paper investigates attitudes to epigraphic writing in Pollux’ Onomasticon (especially 5.149-50) and discusses the apparent accentuation of ancientness and (un)readability of inscriptions. In the second part, the argument addresses issues of epigraphic literacy, elite monumentalization and political prestige by zeroing in on a passage from Arrian’s Periplous and dissecting the spectrum of meanings implied in Greek adjective eusēmos. The third section examines the ideological force of graffitism which sources of second century CE cast as the socio-cultural antipode of high epigraphy; the focus is now on the epithet asēmos.

Item Type: Book Section
Depositing User: Symplectic Admin
Date Deposited: 09 Jul 2018 09:55
Last Modified: 23 Aug 2021 18:10
DOI: 10.1163/9789004379435_004
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