This volume explores the complicated relationship betwee the idea of classical Greece and the messy, Mediterranean reality of a country unsure of its place in the world. Modern Greece is the strangest nation in Europe, insisting on its privileged place as the cradle of democracy, while offering a less-than-perfect form of democracy to its own minorities and its female population. This is the country that turned itself upside down over the adoption of the name of Macedonia by a former Yugoslav republic, as though Alexander the Great's nationality were a matter of extreme contemporary urgency. Patricia Storace begins by telling of her first day in Greece. She brings to bear on modern Greece a deep knowledge of the classics, of the Greek myths and of Greek Christianity. She is the author of Heredity, a book of poems.
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For many, Greece is a land lost in time. It conjures up images of the looming Parthenon with its pillars of marble and the timeless whitewashed buildings of its parched islands glinting against a backdrop of the crystal blue Mediterranean. But ask about contemporary Greece and most people draw a blank. In Dinner with Persephone, poet Patricia Storace does a compelling job of filling in this empty canvas. She conjures a country where history and modernity coexist in often surprising ways, and with the past as an ineluctable backdrop, Storace paints in the everyday details that bring the country and its people vividly to life.From the Inside Flap:
imes Notable Book of the Year
"Full of insights, marvelously entertaining . . . haunting and beautifully written."
--The New York Review of Books
"I lived in Athens, at the intersection of a prostitute and a saint." So begins Patricia Storace's astonishing memoir of her year in Greece. Mixing affection with detachment, rapture with clarity, this American poet perfectly evokes a country delicately balanced between East and West.
Whether she is interpreting Hellenic dream books, pop songs, and soap operas, describing breathtakingly beautiful beaches and archaic villages, or braving the crush at a saint's tomb, Storace, winner of the Whiting Award, rewards the reader with informed and sensual insights into Greece's soul. She sees how the country's pride in its past coexists with profound doubts about its place in the modern world. She discovers a world in which past and present engage in a passionate dialogue. Stylish, funny, an
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Book Description Granta Books, 1998. Paperback. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # M1862070520