Poet and hero in the persian book of kings

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Shahnama: 1000 Years of the Persian Book of Kings

poet and hero in the persian book of kings

Poet and Hero in the Persian Book of Kings enhances our understanding of the relationship between myth and epic. It will be welcomed by readers working in.

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Combining comparative perspectives with a close reading of the internal evidence provided by the text of this epic, Olga M. Davidson argues that the poet of the Shahnama is actually a character in the epic, coexisting with ancient Iranian heroes and kings whose deeds are celebrated by the poetry. The poet can have the role of a character because his poetry comes to life in performance. Whenever the Shahnama was performed by the poet or by later practitioners of his poetry, the performer could interact with his grand characters by re-engaging with their stories, as if for the first time. After documenting the oral poetic performance traditions underlying the text of the Shahnama in all its variations, Davidson argues that the heroic tradition of this epic is deeply ancient, stemming from Indo-European poetic traditions. A primary example is the great warrior Rostam, who upholds Iranian kingship while at the same time posing a threat to kings who prove unworthy of the crown. Remembering Vivian Gussin Paley.

Poet and Hero in the Persian Book of Kings. Olga M. A milestone in Persian Classical literature, Ferdowsi's Book of Kings evokes a long span of Iranian history and myths following a chronicle of its kings from the creation of the world to the conquest of Iran by the armies of the Moslem Arabs in the latter half of the seventh century. Drawing on comprehensive research in oral poetics and epic traditions, as well as on her own throughtful reading of other monumental works of world literature which have been so influential in shaping our present day notions of national and cultural identity, Professor Davidson enhances our understanding of the relationship between myth and epic and orality and literary history. The theoretically radical rethinking of long held assumptions are buttressed by meticulous references to the text itself, providing the readers with ample opportunity to assess the evidence for the searching questions provided by the book in the closely connected fields of comparative literature and religion, and literary theory and history. Poet and hero in the Persian Book of kings Olga M.

A milestone in Persian Classical literature, Ferdowsi's Book of Kings evokes a long span of Iranian history and myths following a chronicle of its kings from the.
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Composed of some fifty thousand verses, the sweeping epic recounts the myths, legends, and "history" of Iran from the beginning of time to the Arab conquest in the seventh century. Firdawsi's text is centered on the reigns of fifty monarchs including three women and can be divided into a legendary and a quasi-historical section. It begins with the reign of Kayumars at the dawn of time and concludes with the last Sasanian king, Yazdigird reigned — , who was defeated by the Arabs. These fifty "chronicles" provide a framework for the dramatic deeds and heroic actions of a range of other personages who are often aided by—or at battle with—a host of fantastic creatures and treacherous villains. The poem draws on a wealth of sources, including local and dynastic histories, the Avesta the sacred text of the Zoroastrian religion of ancient Iran , and myths and legends preserved in oral tradition. Over the centuries, foreign conquerors and local rulers alike were drawn to the Shahnama for its emphasis on justice, legitimacy, and especially the concept of divine glory.

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Poet and Hero in the Persian Book of Kings

Drawing on comprehensive research in oral poetics and epic traditions, as well as on her own thoughtful reading of other monumental works of world literature which have been so influential in shaping our present day notions of national and cultural identity, Professor Davidson enhances our understanding of the relationship between myth and epic and orality and literary history. The theoretically radical rethinking of long held assumptions are buttressed by meticulous references to the text itself, providing the readers with ample opportunity to assess the evidence for the searching questions provided by the book in the closely connected fields of comparative literature and religion, and literary theory and history. I The Poet and His Poetry.

Because the Shahnama presents itself as a chronicle of the reigns of the shahs from the primordial founders to the Sasanian dynasty which ended in , scholarly attention has centered on the question of its historical accuracy. Addressing the literary as well as the historical and mythological aspects of the Shahnama , Olga M. Davidson makes this centerpiece of Iranian culture accessible to Western readers. Drawing on recent work in epic studies and oral poetics, Davidson considers analogies with Classical and medieval European narratives as she investigates the poem's social contexts. Her interpretation of the Shahnama focuses on both the figure of the poet himself and on his protagonists-the superhuman hero Rostam and the historical or historicized shahs. Exploring the Shahnama as an example of court poetry designed to glorify the idea of empire, Davidson identifies as a driving force of Ferdowsi's narrative a strong current of antagonism between king and hero. Ironically, she shows, it is the epic hero himself who poses the greatest threat to the concept of kingship that he is sworn to defend.

Poet and Hero in the Persian Book of Kings. Olga M. Drawing on recent work in epic studies and oral poetics, Davidson considers analogies with Classical and medieval European narratives as she investigates the poem's social contexts. Her interpretation of the Shahnama focuses on both the figure of the poet himself and on his protagonists - the superhuman hero Rostam and the historical or historicized shahs. Exploring the Shahnama as an example, Davidson identifies as a driving force of Ferdowsi's narrative a strong current of antagonism between king and hero. Ironically, she shows, it is the epic hero himself who poses the greatest threat to the concept of kingship that he is sworn to defend. Poet and Hero in the Persian Book of Kings enhances our understanding of the relationship between myth and epic.

Poet and hero in the Persian Book of kings. Front Cover. Olga M. Davidson. Cornell University Press, - Literary Criticism - pages. 0 Reviews.
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1 thoughts on “Poet and hero in the persian book of kings

  1. Poet and Hero in the Persian Book of Kings presents a far-reaching reassessment of the classical Persian epic known as the Shahnama or.

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