March 28, 2019 Forthcoming
Reference - 224 Pages
ISBN 9780815383642 - CAT# K339567
Series: Routledge Studies in Social and Political Thought
Facing censorship and being confined to the fringes of the political debate of his time, Thomas Hobbes turned his attention to translate Homer’s Iliad and the Odyssey from Greek into English. Many have not considered enough the usefulness of these translations. In this book, Andrea Catanzaro analyzes the political value of Hobbes’ translations of Homer’s works and exposes the existence of a link between the translations and the previous works of the Malmesbury philosopher. In doing so, he asks:
• What new information concerning Hobbes' political and philosophical thought can be rendered from mere translation?
• What new offerings can a man in his eighties at the time offer, having widely explained his political ideas in numerous famous essays and treatises?
• What new elements can be deduced in a text that was well-known in England and where there were better versions than the ones produced by Hobbes?
Andrea Catanzaro’s commentary and theoretical interpretation offers an incentive to study Hobbes lesser known works in the wider development of Western political philosophy and the history of political thought.
Chapter 1 – The Hobbesian Homer: between amusement and propaganda 1.1 Hobbes’s Thucydides and Hobbes’s Homer: different times and contexts. And different aims too? 1.2"Nothing else to do"? 1.3 The Hobbesian translations of the Homeric poems 1.4 Hobbes and the classical world: language, culture and education 1.5 To the Reader, concerning the virtues of an heroic poem. A third piece of evidence? Chapter 2 – The Hobbesian translations of the Homeric poems: a reading from the political perspective. Analogies and differences 2.1 The dichotomy between sovereign and subjects 2.2 The kingship lexicon 2.3 The dichotomy between mortal-immortal god 2.4 The divine lexicon Chapter 3 – The sovereign-subject dichotomy and the problem of monocratic power between the original Homeric text and its Hobbesian translation 3.1 Sovereign and subjects 3.2 Plurality of kings and the problem of overlapping sovereignties (I): the "cases" of wánax and wanásso 3.3Plurality of kings and the problem of overlapping sovereignties (II): the "cases" of basiléus and basiléuo 3.4 Poimèn laôn and the disappearance of the pastoral idea of monarchic power 3.5 In order to complete the lexicon of kingship 3.6 Modifications in additional sense: the "case" of king Chapter 4 – Mortal and Immortal god. The problem of the genesis of the political power 4.1 Human or divine genesis of the political power? The kings "fostered" and "sprung" by Zeus 4.2 The sovereign fostered by Zeus. Not a mere lexical problem 4.3 The sovereign sprung by Zeus. A semantically tighter and politically more problematic tie 4.4 Other divine characterisations and their links to the genesis of power. A completion Bibliography Index