Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS:
Title: Historia rerum gestarum : discursive figures in Ammianus Marcellinus
Author: Belcher, Susannah K. R.
ISNI:       0000 0004 2734 5578
Awarding Body: Oxford University
Current Institution: University of Oxford
Date of Award: 2009
Availability of Full Text:
Full text unavailable from EThOS.
Please contact the current institution’s library for further details.
This thesis is a historiographic analysis of the Res gestae of Ammianus Marcellinus. It begins with an analysis of the role of narrativisation in historiography, and engages closely with the ideas of Auerbach, which are themes repeated throughout the thesis. Chapter One goes on to examine Ammianus' compositional technique in order to reveal considerable congruence with other late 4th century Latin authors. It then turns to the causative scheme of the Res gestae, and reveals the permeation of Ammianus' thought world and historiographic endeavour by a universal providential ideal of Justice, figured as the dominant allegory by which he tests his experienced socio- political environment, as well as the primary causative agency in his work. The next chapter looks at the laws, as the dominant morality system experienced by the historian outside the text, and shows how Ammianus has produced a powerful critique of the imperial administration of justice through a forceful reappropriation of their rhetoric of the divinity of the laws. Finally, it turns to bodies, and demonstrates how Ammianus has used them as a corporeal metaphor for his own inscriptive and discursive practice of writing history, a site and locus for various discursive scripts of resistance, decorum and rationality. All in all, the thesis seeks to foreground certain dominant themes: Ammianus' alertness to contemporary discourse and participation in various contemporary literary techniques, his encompassing and coherent historiographic concept, and the role of Justice as the dominant allegory through which he has figured and tested his historical experience. It shows how Ammianus has conceptualised and figured his history in order to present a powerful and informed contribution to various contested narratives of the period, most prominently those of Adrianople, the emperor Julian, providence, the laws and the self.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available