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Homer's Daughter and the Anger of Achilles

Robert Graves

Edited by Neil Powell

Cover Picture of Homer's Daughter and the Anger of Achilles
Categories: Ancient Greek and Roman, War writings
Imprint: Carcanet Fiction
Publisher: Carcanet Press
Available as:
Hardback (352 pages)
(Pub. Jul 2001)
Out of Stock
  • Description
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  • We don't know who, or even if, Homer was. Given threads of internal evidence in the Odyssey, Robert Graves invents, or discovers, that the author of the poem was a woman, herself part of the epic action. He chooses the beguiling, clear-headed Nausicaa and re-visions the post-Trojan world through her eyes. This is the theme of Homer's Daughter, one of Graves' most daring fictional acts.

    The Odyssey has been described as a 'women's' epic, full of female characters and different in kind and colour from the Iliad with its tight focus, its largely male world. Graves' Nausicaa is brilliant at telling stories and she recounts speeches with dramatic aplomb. The confrontations in the Council and between Aethon and the suitors are memorably evoked.

    Nausicaa is a princess of mixed Greek and other ancestry, combining in herself the various cultures that inform the language and folklore of the epic. Graves makes it possible for us to believe that the epic's author told her own story, a true one, buried within the Homeric epic. There is adventure and intrigue; the book stands near the beginning of a tradition that includes Leonardo Sciascia's The Council of Egypt and Umberto Eco's The Name of the Rose.

    Homer's Daughter is reprinted here with Graves' ambitious Homeric translation The Anger of Achilles, which culminates in the death of Hector, emblem of the doom of Troy itself.
    Robert Graves
    Robert Graves (1895-1985), poet, classical scholar, novelist, and critic, was one of the greatest writers of the 20th Century. Athough he produced over 100 books he is perhaps best known for the novel I, Claudius (1934), The White Goddess (1948) and Greek Myths (1955). Robert Graves was born in Wimbledon, South ... read more
    Neil Powell
    NEIL POWELL was born in London in 1948.  He was educated at Sevenoaks School, where he founded and edited the award-winning magazine Verve and wrote on jazz as a ‘young critic’ for The Daily Telegraph ; and at the University of Warwick, where he read English and American Literature (BA, 1966–9) ... read more
    Awards won by Neil Powell Winner, 2017 East Anglian Writers Book by the Cover Award (Was and Is) Winner, 2017  East Anglian Book Awards (for Poetry)
    (Was and Is)
    Praise for Neil Powell 'Throughout there are poems to and for friends and yet, paradoxically, Powell has the air of an outsider, solitary and watchful.' 

     D A Prince, the North

     ''Neil Powell's Was and Is: Collected Poems gathers together a lifetime of walking, seeing, reading and rhyming the landscapes of eastern England, and in particular the coast of Suffolk. The author's world of friends and books has a wide historical horizon, haunted by literary ghosts from George Crabbe to W.G. Sebald. This is a rich book full of the light of the changing seasons, the rhythms of weather and sea, and the little details of human life that add colour to every corner of these skilful, evocative, and painterly poems.''
    Dr Jeremy Noel-Tod (UEA), Poetry judge of the 2017 East Anglian Book Awards

    'Like ordinary people, poets long to be loved. But all that is necessary is that they should be understood.'
    Roy Fuller
         'His poetry has a rewarding range and depth, though memory and our ambivalent handling of memory is what he is best at. He is an elegiac poet, and in some ways a more valuable poet of loneliness than Larkin. Any younger reader who hasn't yet cottoned on to Powell should find this carefully considered 'Collected' rewarding: his is a quiet insistent voice at the heart of the tradition.'
    John Fuller

    'Neil Powell's poems are lucid, elegant, formal and humane .'
    Peter Scupham
    'An exceptional poet of place, and of the East Anglian coast in particular: Neil Powell's Selected Poems thoroughly defines the peculiar atmospheres of that bleak landscape and seascape...'
    New Statesman
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