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Terriblemanliness?: Lucan’S Cato

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Chapter Summary

Cato’s Stoic republicanism in the extant text of the De bello civili lends itself to the view that he is the victim of sustained irony; or that he re-embodies Pompey as sanitized republican symbol but is himself exemplary of a sterile philosophy; or that deconstruction in the context of Lucanian civil war renders Cato at best an advocate of ideological self-fashioning but at worst an exemplar of a virtus as insane as Caesar’s furor. Reassertion of Cato’s status as the outstanding hero of the De bello civili remains deeply problematic.



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