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Homer and the Poetics of Hades - Oxford Scholarship Online
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Homer and the Poetics of Hades

George Alexander Gazis


This book examines Homer’s use of Hades as a poetic resource. By portraying Hades as a realm where vision is not possible, Homer creates a unique poetic environment where social constraints and divine prohibitions are not applicable. The resulting narrative emulates that of the Muses but is markedly distinct from it, as in Hades experimentation with and alteration of epic forms and values can be pursued, giving rise to a ‘poetics of Hades’. In the Iliad, Homer shows how this alternative poetics works through the visit of Patroclus’ shade in Achilles’ dream. The recollection offered by the shad ... More

Keywords: Iliad, Odyssey, epic, Hades, dead, heroine, heroe, poetics

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2018 Print ISBN-13: 9780198787266
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2018 DOI:10.1093/oso/9780198787266.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

George Alexander Gazis, author
Lecturer in Greek Literature, Durham University