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RE: [Roman_History_Books] Spartacus Book Chat- a question

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  • Mary Harrsch
    I did not get a chance to participate in the book chat but I am also in the process of reading Spartacus. I find the writing style very easy to read but like
    Message 1 of 5 , Jun 14, 2004
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      I did not get a chance to participate in the book chat but I am also in
      the process of reading Spartacus. I find the writing style very easy to
      read but like others in the group I am having misgivings about his lack
      of attention to historical accuracy. I'm almost halfway through the
      novel and have not found a single Roman so far that is portrayed in a
      positive light. Every Roman portrayed so far is incestuous, licentious,
      callous, and/or greedy. Roman soldiers are depicted as uneducated
      illiterate brutes. I am disturbed that someone is willing to defame an
      entire civilization just to make a "politically correct" point about
      civil rights.

      Mary Harrsch
      Network & Information Systems Manager
      College of Education
      University of Oregon
      Eugene, OR 97403
      (541) 346-3554
      <http://darkwing.uoregon.edu/%7Emharrsch/>
      http://darkwing.uoregon.edu/%7Emharrsch/

      Commentary Section Editor
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      Roman Times
      <http://darkwing.uoregon.edu/%7Emharrsch/romanwonders.html>
      http://darkwing.uoregon.edu/%7Emharrsch/romanwonders.html

      -----Original Message-----
      From: bjennings3@... [mailto:bjennings3@...]
      Sent: Sunday, June 13, 2004 8:07 PM
      To: Roman_History_Books@yahoogroups.com
      Subject: Re: [Roman_History_Books] Spartacus Book Chat- a question

      My copy of Spartacus is from the library and was published in 1958 by
      Crown Publishers, N.Y. Unfortunately, it has no introduction and begins
      with Chapter 1. I am only up to page 106.

      In the Howard Fast interview which Irene put on the web site, Fast
      mentions that he started thinking about imprisonment and slavery during
      the time he was in prison himself, due to the Communist witch hunts by
      Joseph McCarthy. He started researching for Spartacus when he got out
      of prison.
      Maybe he didn't pay enough attention to surrounding events/persons and
      just concentrated on writing about Spartacus. It does seem strange that
      he didn't pay more attention to historical accuracy. Anyway, I am
      enjoying reading the book.

      Beverly


      Beverly and Ian Jennings
      8148 N. Elmwood Ave
      Kansas City MO 64119
      e-mail: bjennings3@...
      ----- Original Message -----
      From: Irene Hahn
      To: Book Chat
      Sent: 11 June 2004 7:33 PM
      Subject: [Roman_History_Books] Spartacus Book Chat- a question


      I have added some information about Howard Fast to our page
      http://romanhistorybooksandmore.freeservers.com/booklist2.htm

      While I do enjoy the story, and the writing style and the construction
      of the novel, I'm struggling with the lack of accuracy when it comes to
      portraying historical Roman figures, and more important, events which
      actually occurred at a much later date, and one, Cicero's quaestorship
      in Sicily, at an earlier date.

      My copy of the book is the one which Fast self-published and is a
      barebones edition.

      Does anyone have a copy that has an introduction that might help
      understanding whether this was a deliberate construct, or simply
      ignorance, or worse, negligence? (He has written some excellent novels
      about the American Revolution and War.)

      BTW, I met Howard Fast once in the early 1990s at a dinner party. And
      I can tell you, he still had the crusading fire in the belly!

      Irene

      Roman History Reading Group
      http://romanhistorybooksandmore.freeservers.com
      Cohost, Ancient Classical History Forum
      http://forums.about.com/ab-ancienthist/start


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    • lennep95
      Mary, you are not too late: the first chat starts this Wednesday, June 16. Irene
      Message 2 of 5 , Jun 14, 2004
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        Mary, you are not too late:

        the first chat starts this Wednesday, June 16.

        Irene
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