The Anecdote

Simon Goldhill

in Ancient Literacies

Published in print May 2011 | ISBN: 9780199793983
Published online April 2015 | e-ISBN: 9780190261283 | DOI:
The Anecdote

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This chapter focuses on literary culture. It explores the sudden popularity of “anecdote” in the Second Sophistic and how literate practices can be situated in oral performance in distinct social settings. The anecdote as a written form is seen as symbolic of the literary culture during the Second Sophistic, a characteristic packaging of material that is best understood in relation to actual oral practices among the literary elite. As an oral form that can be written down, memorized, and recirculated orally, the anecdote became a normative means whereby bookish, highly educated elites compete in the symposium and other contexts.

Keywords: literary culture; anecdote; Second Sophistic; oral performance; literary elite; symposium

Chapter.  8746 words. 

Subjects: Classical Literature

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