|Subject:||Classics||Publisher:||Oxford University Press|
|Published:||December 18th 2013||Pages:||576|
The culmination of over 30 years of studying and thinking about Homer, world renowned scholar and accomplished poet Barry Powell has produced what one reviewer calls a "page turner, bound to become the new standard." Powell's translation renders the Homeric Greek with a simplicity and dignity reminiscent of the original. Lucid and fast, the text immediately engrosses the reader, with a tight and balanced rhythm that sings and with a closeness to the original that allows the reader to hear the incantatory repetitions in the Greek. More accessible than Lattimore, more poetic than Lombardo, and more accurate than Fagles or Fitzgerald, this translation is an excellent fit for today's students and general readers. With swift, transparent language that rings both ancient and modern, Barry Powell gives readers anew all of the rage, pleasure, pathos, and humor that are Homer's Iliad. His clever translation is simple and energetic: sometimes coarse, sometimes flowing, it is always poetically engaged. Powell lays bare the semantic background of Homer through felicitous phrasing and delivers us a Dark-Age epic, one more suggestive of Norse sagas than the cultural milieu of archaic Ionia. Both the translation and the introduction are consistently informed by the best recent scholarship. The illustrations are well chosen, the maps precise, the notes brief but helpful.
Barry B. Powell is the Halls-Bascomb Professor of Classics Emeritus at the University of Wisconsin, Madison. Powell is one of the world's leading Homer scholars. In HOMER AND THE ORIGIN OF THE GREEK ALPHABET (Cambridge, 1991) he advanced the radical thesis that the Greek alphabet was designed specifically to record the text of Homer, a thesis that has now been widely accepted by the scholarly community and was the subject of a conference in Berlin in 2008. In 1997 he published (with Ian Morris) A NEW COMPANION TO HOMER (Brill), now the standard scholarly companion, translated into modern Greek. In 2004 he published HOMER (Wiley-Blackwell, second edition, 2007), an overview of the scholarship on the poems and on the poems themselves. It is now the single most widely read book on Homer. In 2009 he published his own Greek edition of the poems, ILIAS, ODYSSEY (Chester River Press), to accompany Alexander Pope's translation of the poems. A published poet, Powell is also the author of Writing and the Origins of Greek Literature (Cambridge, 2003), as well as hundreds of scholarly articles.