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Table of Contents

Preface Note on Sappho's Texts Introduction The Legend Papyrus into Print Poetry and Politics Sexuality and Ritual The Songs Reading Notes Illustration Credits Index

About the Author

Margaret Williamson is Senior Lecturer in Classical Studies, St. Mary's University College, University of Surrey.


In a taut and lucid discussion, Williamson traces the vicissitudes and vagaries that characterize the survival of [Sappho's] work...Her careful and informative studies of individual poems produce a flesh-and-blood poet, who moves from girlhood to maturity, encompassing the ages of woman in her works. -- Josephine Balmer * The Independent [UK] *
A lucid and sensitive study. [Williamson] introduces the reader to the pleasures of Sappho's songs, and explores the problems that we face in reconstructing the culture which produced them. -- Penelope Murray * Times Literary Supplement *
Truly impressive. Sappho's Immortal Daughters will bring Sappho to life for the uninitiated and offers a number of original insights about Sappho's poems that will, no doubt, engage the most learned readers of Sappho. -- Ellen Greene * Bryn Mawr Classical Review *
Sappho's Immortal Daughters, a lucid book which assumes no specialist knowledge in the reader, sets out to recover something of the authentic Sapphic voice from the mythologizations and distortions...which have affected her reputation since antiquity...This is a persuasive book which culminates in some delicate readings of Sappho's fragmentary but resonant words. * Greece and Rome *
Williamson's lucid and absorbing study successfully presents what can be known about the cultural context of Sappho's life and work. Using social, political, and literary materials that influenced and reflect Sappho's experience, the author reconstructs the atmosphere in which Sappho lived, breathed, and worked. * Choice *
In a beautifully produced and illustrated book, [Williamson] traces the history of Sappho's survival, seeks to locate her within a specific cultural and historical milieu, and offers perceptive discussions of most of the major poems...This is a thoroughly worthwhile book. -- Richard Hunter * JACT Review *
Williamson...has produced a useful introduction to Sappho as a cultural artifact, aiming her book primarily at those who are not advanced students of classical literature. The book is valuable...for its summaries--all presented in relatively jargon-free, digestible form--of the major trends in the scholarly debates surrounding the figure of Sappho. -- Jane McIntosh Snyder * Helios *

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