Chapter

Why the Scandal?

Larry F. Norman

in The Shock of the Ancient

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print April 2011 | ISBN: 9780226591483
Published online February 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226591506 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7208/chicago/9780226591506.003.0006
Why the Scandal?

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When the ancient past, once so intimately bound to the present, becomes fundamentally alien, it can then, as with any such estrangement, arouse longing, repulsion, or cool indifference. The last option, however, has limited viability at a moment when the separation is so raw that it inevitably provokes passion. The time of the quarrel was such a moment. The Renaissance identification with an idealized antiquity (partly undermined though it was by the humanists' own critical investigations) could not yet be casually discarded. The attachment to the classical past was thus more likely to turn to sour distaste than to a dispassionate and rational evaluation.

Keywords: ancient past; passion; Renaissance; quarrel; antiquity; classical past

Chapter.  5111 words. 

Subjects: Literature

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