New PDF release: 'Burning knowledge'': Studies of bookburning in ancient Rome

By Sarefield, Daniel Christopher

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Extra info for 'Burning knowledge'': Studies of bookburning in ancient Rome

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New York: Columbia University Press, 1988): 172–93. 63 Mark Juergensmeyer, “The Logic of Religious Violence,” 174–5. ”64 In such situations, according to Juergensmeyer, where violent acts take on a cosmic significance, it is not the rules of ordinary morality and behavior that apply, but the rules of war. Such observations, drawn from recent events whose documentary evidence is abundantly rich, echo many aspects of the findings of scholars who have examined ancient religious conflicts, like Gregory, Gaddis, and Frankfurter, mentioned above, and suggest that a careful study of bookburning in the ancient world is a valuable contribution to the study of religion and violence in ancient society, but also to the study of religious violence more generally.

Authors such as Livy and Dionysios of Halikarnassos, allowing a glimpse at Roman society in the period when it was first growing into an empire. This section will, therefore, be concerned primarily with this period, the middle Republic (ca. ). 6–11. 3 John A. North, Roman Religion, New Surveys in the Classics, no. 30. (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2000), 21. 4 On Numa, see Liv. 5; and Plutarch, Numa 10. On Numa’s importance as a founding figure of Roman religion, see, for example, Liv. 7 Likewise, he came to found many of the principal Roman religious festivals to the gods, and the rites and ceremonies by which they were to be honored.

For our purposes, it is important to note that all of these texts and their readerships were viewed with suspicion by authorities at some time or other during antiquity on the grounds that they subverted or 30 this phenomenon, the immolators themselves represent a much wider spectrum of society than the often quite specific perpetrators and contexts in which other types of sacred or religious texts were destroyed. This chapter explores the polysemous nature of burning occult religious books in the Roman world.

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'Burning knowledge'': Studies of bookburning in ancient Rome by Sarefield, Daniel Christopher


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