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Narrating Desire Eros, Sex, and Gender in the Ancient Novel


Encolpius, the narrator of the novel, exhibits an obsession with literature that impels him to interpret his world though the lens of earlier classics. Thus, Giton embodies analogues to both the heroes and the heroines of epic and tragedy often in the context of the picaresque. The fluidity of his gender roles mirrors the novel's fluctuation among the genres of literature. As backdrop to the Satyrica's play with gender and genre stands Nero's art of performing in both masculine and feminine roles on the Roman stage.


Author Posting. © De Gruyter, 2012. This chapter is posted here by permission of De Gruyter for personal use, not for redistribution. The chapter was published in Narrating Desire Eros, Sex, and Gender in the Ancient Novel. Berlin, Boston: De Gruyter, 2012.

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