The Dance of the Muses: Choral Theory and Ancient Greek Poetics

Hardcover | September 28, 2006

byA. P. David

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This book develops an authentic and at the same time revolutionary musical analysis of ancient Greek poetry. It departs from the abstract metrical analyses of the past in that it conceives the rhythmic and harmonic elements of poetry as integral to the whole expression, and decisive in theinterpretation of its meaning. David offers a thoroughgoing treatment of Homeric poetics: here some remarkable discoveries in the harmonic movement of epic verse, when combined with some neglected facts about the origin of the hexameter in a 'dance of the Muses', lead to essential new thinking aboutthe genesis and the form of Homeric poetry. He also gives a foretaste of the fruits to be harvested in lyric by a musical analysis, which applies a new theory of the Greek tonic accent and considers concretely the role of dance in performance.

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This book develops an authentic and at the same time revolutionary musical analysis of ancient Greek poetry. It departs from the abstract metrical analyses of the past in that it conceives the rhythmic and harmonic elements of poetry as integral to the whole expression, and decisive in theinterpretation of its meaning. David offers a t...

A. P. David completed his Ph.D. at the University of Chicago.

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Format:HardcoverDimensions:304 pages, 8.5 × 5.43 × 0.83 inPublished:September 28, 2006Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:019929240X

ISBN - 13:9780199292400

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Table of Contents

1. Introduction: the right comparison2. Choreia and the musical text3. The voice of the dancer: a new theory of the Greek accent4. The form of the hexameter: the origins of caesura and diaeresis5. The `choral signifier': the shaping of Homeric speech6. Retrogression, episode, and anagogy: the round dance and narrative form7. The genesis of Homeric poetry (a brief synthesis): the `intemporizing' cataloguer8. The lyric orchestra