Untangling Blackness in Greek Antiquity

English | 2022 | ISBN: 1108495281 | 278 Pages | PDF | 3.22 MB

How should articulations of blackness from the fifth century BCE to the twenty-first century be properly read and interpreted? This important and timely new book is the first concerted treatment of black skin color in the Greek literature and visual culture of antiquity. In charting representations in the Hellenic world of black Egyptians, Aithiopians, Indians, and Greeks, Sarah Derbew dexterously disentangles the complex and varied ways in which blackness has been co-produced by ancient authors and artists; their readers, audiences, and viewers; and contemporary scholars. Exploring the precarious hold that race has on skin coloration, the author uncovers the many silences, suppressions, and misappropriations of blackness within modern studies of Greek antiquity. Shaped by performance studies and critical race theory alike, her book maps out an authoritative archaeology of blackness that reappraises its significance. It offers a committedly anti-racist approach to depictions of black people while rejecting simplistic conflations or explanations.

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