Monday, December 26, 2005

A reminder of time and place

Our next meeting will be on January 11. We will be at the North Sarasota Library, a very nice facility on Newtown Blvd. just off 27th Street, between 301 and Tuttle. Follow the above link for more details.

A more detailed map can be found here.

We'll be talking mostly about Jacob.

Arnold and Auerbach

Two exemplary comparative essays on the literatures of the Greeks and the Hebrews are Matthew Arnold's chapter on "Hebraism and Hellenism" in Culture and Anarchy, and the first chapter of Erich Auerbach's Mimesis.

While Arnold takes a "macro" approach, offering an overview in the context of European, and especially British, literary history, Auerbach offers a "close-up" reading of two passages, one from Genesis, the other from Homer's Odyssey. Paying careful attention to formal literary features of each passage leads Auerbach to some fascinating insights into the distinctive worlds of the ancient Greeks and Hebrews.

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Three views of Jacob

Continuing with representations of the patriarchs, here are three images of Jacob's vision by Murillo, Domenico Fetti, and Jusepe de Ribera. Click the image to enlarge. More images can be found here.

Jacob's Dream: Murillo, 1660

Jacob's Dream of the Ladder to Heaven, Domenico Fetti, 1618-20

Jacob's Dream: Jusepe de Ribera, 1639

Saturday, December 17, 2005

Abraham: another perspective

In addition to the fascinating views of Abraham seen through Rembrandt's eyes which Arline gave us, you may be interested in the multiple retellings of the sacrifice of Isaac in Kierkegaard's Fear and Trembling.