damned_colonial: Convicts in Sydney, being spoken to by a guard/soldier (Default)
[personal profile] damned_colonial posting in [community profile] readingthepast
As mod/creator of this comm, I'm going to start off with some guidelines on what suggested reading should be provided for each theme.

1. You need to provide at least three works of fiction.
2. If possible, you should make one of these be freely available as an etext (thanks, [personal profile] katemonkey)
3. They don't have to be good.
4. They should, however, show different perspectives on the theme.
5. You may additionally offer non-fiction or other media suggestions (eg film, TV), especially for themes that are not well known, to provide additional background.

I'm happy to discuss/adjust/modify/throw away the above guidelines, if people have any other ideas.


Date: 2009-05-31 06:10 pm (UTC)
mouseworks: A crop of an orchid shot taken with a Nikon 105 macro lens (Default)
From: [personal profile] mouseworks
Memoirs of Hadrian by Marguerite Yourcenar (I'm reading this now, I, Claudius by Robert Graves (haven't read, saw some of the BBc production), and Suetonius (Twelve Caesarsgossip about the Roman emperors (have read). How do we get the Romans wrong -- Suetonius makes Roman history seem very much like a precursor to Italian history rather than the British stoic Romans version. Yourcenar is French classicist/queer person looking back on one of her culture heros (not so much about Britain as about Roman civilization as an ideal, but from a French perspective rather than a British perspective. Graves is idiosyncratic -- haven't read this one but have read one of his White Goddess novels. One Rosemary Sutcliffe for the British position (Eagle of the Ninth if I'm remembering my titles correctly.

Re: Roman

Date: 2009-06-02 02:01 pm (UTC)
vaznetti: (Default)
From: [personal profile] vaznetti
Suetonius is biography rather than fiction, of course.

Allan Massie has written some interesting stuff -- Augustus, Tiberius (which might be good in conjunction with Yourcenaur), and Caesar (which has the benefit of being narrated by Decimus Brutus -- the other Brutus).

Colleen McCullough has a whole series, of which the first couple are by far the best -- The First Man in Rome and The Grass Crown, which are about Marius and Sulla at the very start of the first century BCE.

Then there's Lindsey Davis, The Course of Honour, about Antonia Caenis, an Imperial freedwoman (former slave) who becomes Vespasian's mistress.

I recall that Steven Saylor's first few mysteries aren't too bad -- especially Roman Blood.


Reading the Past

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