Ovid

Stories of Southern Italy
  • Stories of Southern Italy

  • Woven through all these tales are the unique histories and mythologies of the regions of Southern Italy, encompassing Sicily, Calabria, Cantania, Basilicata, Apulia and Campania. Theocritus, Virgil and Ovid evoke a Sicily populated by Cyclopes and sea monsters, while in an excerpt from The Smile of the Unknown Mariner Vincenzo Consolo depicts the island in 1860, on the frontline in Italy's war of independence. The South's legendary legacy of brigandage and organized crime enlivens the stories of Leonardo Sciascia, Carlo Levi and Joseph Conrad. Curzio Malaparte and Norman Lewis immortalize the wreckage of Naples and the indomitable spirit of its people during World War II, and Elena Ferrante paints a spectacular portrait of a poor but vibrant Neapolitan neighbourhood in an excerpt from the bestselling My Brilliant Friend. Collectively, these entertaining tales plunge readers into the sometimes harsh and troubled, but always seductive and vital world of Italy's Mezzogiorno

Ovid (43 BC - AD 18) was a Roman writer who mastered a wide range of literary forms from elegies of nostalgia and love to 'collective' narratives relating disconnected stories, such as Metamorphoses. He died in exile by the Black Sea. Ovid's influence has extended through Chaucer's age to Marlowe, Spenser, Shakespeare, and to poets such as Ted Hughes in the twentieth century. Anthony Boyle is Professor of Classics at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles. He is the editor of the classical literary journal Ramus and his publications include Ancient Pastoral, The Imperial Muse and Roman Literature and Ideology. Roger Woodard is Associate Professor of Classics at UCLA. His publications include Greek Writing from Knossos to Homer and The Cambridge Encyclopedia of the World's Ancient Languages.

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