Truth and History in the Ancient World: Pluralising the Past

Ruffell, I. and Hau, L. I. (Eds.) (2016) Truth and History in the Ancient World: Pluralising the Past. Series: Routledge studies in ancient history. Routledge: London and New York. ISBN 9781138839403

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Publisher's URL: https://www.routledge.com/9781138839403

Abstract

This collection of essays investigates whether the producers and consumers of histories in the ancient world believed in their stories about the past and the extent to which they were committed to their truth. Drawing from modern debates over the writing and status of history, growing interest in cultural memory, and philosophical approaches to more relaxed notions of truth, the papers revisit the truth claims of Greek historiography in the context of other cultural uses of the past. While the historiographers insist on the truthfulness of their accounts, they equally purport to believe in myth, distort facts for moralising or other purposes; lyric poets make highly competitive truth claims while acknowledging the plurality of myth; tragedy, which creates versions of a shared past that are often sharply at variance with one another, has been co-opted both as a repository of cultural memory and as a paradigm for storytelling and fictionality. To address these problems, the book explores the hypothesis of a pluralistic concept of truth, one where different versions of the same historical event can all be true, or where there are different kinds of truths, or modes of belief that can vary across cultures.

Item Type:Edited Books
Status:Published
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Ruffell, Professor Isabel and Hau, Dr Lisa Irene
Authors:
Subjects:D History General and Old World > D History (General) > D051 Ancient History
D History General and Old World > DE The Mediterranean Region. The Greco-Roman World
D History General and Old World > DF Greece
P Language and Literature > PA Classical philology
College/School:College of Arts > School of Humanities > Classics
Publisher:Routledge
ISBN:9781138839403

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