No Regrets: Remorse in Classical Antiquity

Hardcover | July 20, 2013

byLaurel Fulkerson

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No Regrets: Remorse in Classical Antiquity is the first sustained study examining the circumstances under which the emotions of remorse and regret were manifested in Greek and Roman public life. Despite a still-common notion that remorse is a modern, monotheistic emotion, it argues thatremorse did in fact exist in pre-Christian antiquity. By discussing the standard lexical denotations of remorse, Fulkerson shows how its parameters were rather different from its modern counterpart. Remorse in the ancient world was normally not expressed by high-status individuals, but by their inferiors, notably women, the young, and subjects of tyrants, nor was it redemptive, but often served to show defect of character. Through a series of examples, especially poetic, historical, andphilosophical texts, this book demonstrates this was so because of the very high value placed on consistency of character in the ancient world. High-status men, in particular, faced constant challenges to their position, and maintaining at least the appearance of uniformity was essential to theirsuccessful functioning. The redemptive aspects of remorse, of learning from one's mistakes, were thus nearly absent in the ancient world.

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No Regrets: Remorse in Classical Antiquity is the first sustained study examining the circumstances under which the emotions of remorse and regret were manifested in Greek and Roman public life. Despite a still-common notion that remorse is a modern, monotheistic emotion, it argues thatremorse did in fact exist in pre-Christian antiqui...

Laurel Fulkerson is an Associate Professor at Florida State University. In addition to work on the emotions, she has published articles on gender, Latin, and Greek poetry. She has held visiting fellowships at the University of Cincinnati, Exeter College, and St. Anne's College, Oxford.

other books by Laurel Fulkerson

Format:HardcoverDimensions:320 pages, 8.5 × 5.43 × 0.98 inPublished:July 20, 2013Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0199668892

ISBN - 13:9780199668892

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Table of Contents

AcknowledgementsIntroductory Material1. Prequel: A Penitent Emperor2. Emotions, Remorse, and Consistency3. The Shape of Ancient Remorse: Vocabulary and Definitions4. Structure and Outline of the BookRemorse in Action: Case Studies5. Agamemnon, Achilles, and the Homeric Roots of Remorse6. Neoptolemus and the Essential Elements of Remorse7. Hermione s Feigned Regret8. Killing Cleitus: Alexander s Fruitless Remorse9. Comedy Means (Almost) Never Having to Say You re Sorry10. Ovid and the Coercion of Remorse from Above11. Nero s Degenerate Remorse12. Command Performance: Mutiny in the Roman Army13. Plutarch on Consistency and the StatesmanConclusions14. Late Antiquity and the Conversion of Emotion15. Final (Re)considerationsBibliographyIndex