In "Exile and the Poetics of Loss in Greek Tradition" Nancy Sultan examines the theme of heroic exile and return in Greek poetic tradition from the Archaic epic of Homer to modern Greek folk poetry and song. Sultan studies issues of how husbands and wives survive separation and communicate the painful experience of loss. Focusing on the role women play as obstacles and facilitators during the hero's exile and return, Sultan argues that the hero's reputation, his glory, that which he earns through suffering in exile, is managed by women - especially his wife and mother. Without their emotional support, the hero's glory is compromised. This innovative and interdisciplinary book should be of interest to classicists, anthropologists and scholars of literature and women's studies.
Nancy Sultan is associate professor of humanities and classical studies at Illinois Wesleyan University.