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Livy on the Hannibalic War$
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D. S. Levene

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780198152958

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198152958.001.0001

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Narrative Organization

Narrative Organization

Chapter:
(p.1) 1 Narrative Organization
Source:
Livy on the Hannibalic War
Author(s):

D. S. Levene (Contributor Webpage)

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198152958.003.0001

Livy's work is written in ten books, each with its own structure. It is also written in an annalistic format; but within each year one finds alternations between domestic and military events, and between different theatres of war. Thus, Livy's narrative is articulated simultaneously along three separate axes. The story of any individual episode may run through multiple years, and so can only be traced through many widely separated passages. At the same time, there is a general ‘war narrative’ that is formed by the juxtaposition of these multiple stories, and a pattern that is created by the articulation of the narrative into individual books. This chapter shows how Livy creatively employs the tension between these three: how book structure and chronology cut across one another, and how his treatment of a single story is affected by the apparently unrelated episodes with which it is juxtaposed.

Keywords:   narrative, annalistic, book structure, chronology, juxtaposition

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