The Homeric Narrator
is a detailed analysis of the ways in which the
narrator in the Iliad and the Odyssey makes his presence noticeable.
It begins with the more subtle — summary, explanation, changes
of point of view and so on — and progresses to the few examples
of outright narrative self-consciousness that appear in the epics.
Richardson's approach is fairly light on theory, and what theory he does
use is explained in the introduction. His analysis is illustrated with
extensive quotation from and comparison with other narratives, ranging
from the Icelandic sagas
to The French Lieutenant's Woman
the Russian novelists featuring most prominently. All the quotations
from Homer are given both in Greek and in translation and no knowledge
of critical work on the poems is assumed, so The Homeric Narrator
is accessible to the non-specialist.
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