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Mary Beard - Author

About the Author

Mary Beard is a professor of classics at Newnham College, Cambridge, and the Classics editor of the TLS. She has world-wide academic acclaim, and is a fellow of the British Academy and a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Her previous books include the bestselling, Wolfson Prize-winning Pompeii, Confronting the Classics, The Roman Triumph and The Parthenon. Her TLS blog has been collected in the books It’s a Don’s Life and All in a Don’s Day.

 

Mary Beard's Inheritance Books...

1. Charlotte Bronte, Jane Eyre
The classic novel about what women want, or think they want, or don't. Is 'Reader, I married him' the ultimate happy ending or not? It's a book that changes in all kinds of interesting ways as you re-read it over a lifetime.

2. Homer, The Odyssey
At the very start of Western literature, the Odyssey underlies so much of what we read right down to the present day. A story of homecoming, temptation and the perilous boundary between civilisation and barbarism.

3. Germaine Greer, The Female Eunuch
The liveliest and punchiest classic of feminism: something every woman and man should read. It still changes lives, like it changed mine.

 

Author photo © Catarina Turroni Lion TV

Featured books by Mary Beard

Other books by Mary Beard

The Roman Triumph

The Roman Triumph

Author: Mary Beard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 05/05/2009

Listen to a short interview with Mary BeardHost: Chris Gondek | Producer: Heron & CraneIt followed every major military victory in ancient Rome: the successful general drove through the streets to the temple of Jupiter on the Capitoline Hill; behind him streamed his raucous soldiers; in front were his most glamorous prisoners, as well as the booty he'd captured, from enemy ships and precious statues to plants and animals from the conquered territory. Occasionally there was so much on display that the show lasted two or three days. A radical reexamination of this most extraordinary of ancient ceremonies, this book explores the magnificence of the Roman triumph--but also its darker side. What did it mean when the axle broke under Julius Caesar's chariot? Or when Pompey's elephants got stuck trying to squeeze through an arch? Or when exotic or pathetic prisoners stole the general's show? And what are the implications of the Roman triumph, as a celebration of imperialism and military might, for questions about military power and victory in our own day? The triumph, Mary Beard contends, prompted the Romans to question as well as celebrate military glory. Her richly illustrated work is a testament to the profound importance of the triumph in Roman culture--and for monarchs, dynasts and generals ever since. But how can we re-create the ceremony as it was celebrated in Rome? How can we piece together its elusive traces in art and literature? Beard addresses these questions, opening a window on the intriguing process of sifting through and making sense of what constitutes history.

The Invention of Jane Harrison

The Invention of Jane Harrison

Author: Mary Beard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 07/05/2002

Jane Ellen Harrison (1850-1928) is the most famous female Classicist in history, the author of books that revolutionized our understanding of Greek culture and religion. A star in the British academic world, she became the quintessential Cambridge woman--as Virginia Woolf suggested when, in A Room of One's Own, she claims to have glimpsed Harrison's ghost in the college gardens. This lively and innovative portrayal of a fascinating woman raises the question of who wins (and how) in the competition for academic fame. Mary Beard captures Harrison's ability to create her own image. And she contrasts her story with that of Eugenie Sellers Strong, a younger contemporary and onetime intimate, the author of major work on Roman art and once a glittering figure at the British School in Rome--but who lost the race for renown. The setting for the story of Harrison's career is Classical scholarship in this period--its internal arguments and allegiances and especially the influence of the anthropological strain most strikingly exemplified by Sir James Frazer. Questioning the common criteria for identifying intellectual influence and movements, Beard exposes the mythology that is embedded in the history of Classics. At the same time she provides a vivid picture of a sparkling intellectual scene. The Invention of Jane Harrison offers shrewd history and undiluted fun.

Classical Art From Greece to Rome

Classical Art From Greece to Rome

Author: Mary Beard, John Henderson Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 26/04/2001

The stunning masterpieces of Ancient Greece and Rome are fundamental to the story of art in Western culture and to the origins of art history. The expanding Greek world of Alexander the Great had an enormous impact on the Mediterranean superpower of Rome. Generals, rulers, and artists seized, imitated, and re-thought the stunning legacy of Greek painting and sculpture, culminating in the greatest art-collector the world had ever seen, the Roman emperor, Hadrian. This exciting new look at Classical art starts with the excavation of the buried city of Pompeii, and investigates the grandiose monuments of ancient tyrants, and the sensual beauty of Apollo and Venus. Concluding with that most influential invention of all, the human portrait, it highlights the re-discovery of Classical art in the modern world, from the treasure hunts of Renaissance Rome to scientific retrieval in the twenty-first century.

Rome in the Late Republic

Rome in the Late Republic

Author: Mary Beard, N. Crawford Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 27/01/2000

This textbook outlines the factors that every student must assess for a proper understanding of the period, from the attitudes of the aristocracy and the role of state religion to the function of political institutions. This second edition also contains a new introduction and an updated bibliography.

Religions of Rome A History

Religions of Rome A History

Author: Mary Beard, John North, Simon Price Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 28/06/1998

This book offers a radical new survey of more than a thousand years of religious life at Rome. It sets religion in its full cultural context, between the primitive hamlet of the eighth century BC and the cosmopolitan, multicultural society of the first centuries of the Christian era. The narrative account is structured around a series of broad themes: how to interpret the Romans' own theories of their religious system and its origins; the relationship of religion and the changing politics of Rome; the religious importance of the layout and monuments of the city itself; changing ideas of religious identity and community; religious innovation - and, ultimately, revolution. The companion volume, Religions of Rome: A Sourcebook, sets out a wide range of documents richly illustrating the religious life in the Roman world.

Religions of Rome A Sourcebook

Religions of Rome A Sourcebook

Author: Mary Beard, John North, Simon Price Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 28/06/1998

Volume two reveals the extraordinary diversity of ancient Roman religion. A comprehensive sourcebook, it presents a wide range of documents illustrating religious life in the Roman world - from the foundations of the city in the eighth century BC to the Christian capital more than a thousand years later. Each document is given a full introduction, explanatory notes and bibliography, and acts as a starting point for further discussion. Through paintings, sculptures, coins and inscriptions, as well as literary texts in translation, the book explores the major themes and problems of Roman religion, such as sacrifice, the religious calendar, divination, ritual, and priesthood. Starting from the archaeological traces of the earliest cults of the city, it finishes with a series of texts in which Roman authors themselves reflect on the nature of their own religion, its history, even its funny side. Judaism and Christianity are given full coverage, as important elements in the religious world of the Roman empire.

Author Info

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https://timesonline.typepad.com/dons_life/

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