'I fear it's potentially like Pompeii’: disaster, mass media and the ancient city

Paul, Joanna (2009). 'I fear it's potentially like Pompeii’: disaster, mass media and the ancient city. In: Lowe, Dunstan and Shahabudin, Kim eds. Classics for All: Reworking Antiquity in Mass Culture. Newcastle-upon-Tyne, UK: Cambridge Scholars Publishing, pp. 91–108.

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About the book:
Classical culture belongs to us all: whether as academic subject or as entertainment, it constantly stimulates new ideas. In recent years, following Gladiator’s successful revival of the ‘toga epic’, studies of the ancient world in cinema have drawn increasing attention from authors and readers. This collection builds on current interest in this topic, taking its readers past the usual boundaries of classical reception studies into less familiar—and even uncharted—areas of ancient Greece and Rome in mass popular culture. Contributors discuss the uses of antiquity in television programmes, computer games, journalism, Hollywood blockbusters, B-movies, pornography, Web 2.0, radio drama, and children’s literature. Its diverse contents celebrate the continuing influence of Classics on modern life: from controversies within academia to ephemeral pop culture, from the traditional to the cutting-edge.

The reader will find both new voices and those of more established commentators, including broadcaster and historian Bettany Hughes, Latinist Paula James, and Gideon Nisbet, author of Ancient Greece in Film and Popular Culture. Together they demonstrate that rich rewards await anyone with an interest in our classical heritage, when they embrace the diversity and complexity of mass popular culture as a whole.

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