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bentley
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HISTORY: Historical Events and References (Ancient and Modern)

This thread will serve as an area for any ancient or modern history discussions which are referenced by Eugenides in the novel Middlesex.

Bentley
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Re: HISTORY: Historical Events and References (Ancient and Modern)


bentley wrote:
This thread will serve as an area for any ancient or modern history discussions which are referenced by Eugenides in the novel Middlesex.

Bentley




Comments from another thread related to Greek and Turkish War:

The war between Greece and Turkey was a key element in the novel. I indicated in another thread that I read that 100,000 Greeks were killed in that war by the Turks. The accounts were graphic in the book and unsettling; especially since others just stood on the sidelines and let it happen. I was wondering if others had more historical information related to this war and whether the 100,000 number was accurate. I will comment on the other historical events cited as I come across them in the novel.

As Cal narrated: "Living sends a person not out into the future but back into the past."
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Re: HISTORY: Historical Events and References (Ancient and Modern)

Paul H's comments and post:



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In the interview, Eugenides states that this isn't a historical novel. I disagree. I'm learning a load of history as I read. How about you guys?

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I was reading somewhere that 100,000 Greeks were killed in that battle of Smyrna by the Turks. I found that number unbelievable. Is that a reliable figure?

Maybe we should have a history thread.

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Great idea, Bentley. Please feel free to start a history thread. By the way , here's a photograph of Smyrna burning:

http://www.btinternet.com/~judyin.london/rozaeskenazi/smyrna.jpg
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Re: HISTORY: Smyna 1922

[ Edited ]
This book was one that the SUNDAY TIMES of London deemed as the "Book of the Year" while THE NEW YORK TIMES called it one of the notable 100 books of the year.

Smryna 1922 is the name of the book by Dobkin. This first url can be very upsetting and the book itself was cited as an outstanding and factual account.

I found the first url to be disturbing (photos are included); but factual it is. If you are sensitive, it would be better not to view the photos and review the book as cited on the barnes and noble site.


http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/news/973115/posts

The second url takes you to the barnes and noble area where you can purchase the book itself and/or read the reviews.

http://search.barnesandnoble.com/booksearch/isbnInquiry.asp?z=y&EAN=9780966745108&itm=1

Message Edited by bentley on 06-13-2007 06:53 PM
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Re: HISTORY: Mount Olympus

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mount_Olympus

Mentioned in the novel as the ancient mountain of Greece.
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Re: HISTORY: Rodin's Sculpture Garden (The Thinker)

Milton's favorite piece of sculpture was The Thinker by Rodin.

"My father, however, adopted the pose of his favorite piece of sculpture, The Thinker, a miniature of which sat across the room on the telephone table."

This url shows the original The Thinker in Rodin's Sculpture Garden by the Eiffel Tower,

http://travelwithkids.about.com/od/paris/ss/parisrodin.htm
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Re: HISTORY: Madame de Stael

[ Edited ]
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Madame_de_Stael

In the novel, Peter Tatakis, Uncle Pete, "was a leading member of the debating society that formed every week on our black love seats"

He had a passion in history, for Edward Gibbons, and in literature, for the journals of Madame de Stael." page 9

"He liked to quote that witty lady's opinion on the German language, which held that German wasn't good for conversation, because you had to wait to the end of the sentence for the verb, and so couldn't interrupt." - page 9

Barnes and Noble site url:

http://search.barnesandnoble.com/booksearch/isbnInquiry.asp?z=y&bnit=H&bnrefer=JEM&EAN=9780786717057...

Message Edited by bentley on 06-13-2007 07:17 PM

Message Edited by bentley on 06-13-2007 08:11 PM
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Re: HISTORY: Petroskey, Michigan

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Petoskey,_Michigan

Where Cal was reborn:

"I was born twice, first, as a baby girl, on a remarkably smogless Detroit day in January of 1960; and then again, as a teenage boy, in an emergency room near Petoskey, Michigan, in August of 1974.
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Re: HISTORY: Detroit, Michigan

Where it all began for Calliope Helen Stephanides.

page one: "I was born twice: first, as a baby girl, on a remarkably smoglass Detroit day in January of 1960...."

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Detroit,_Michigan
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Re: HISTORY: Detroit, Michigan

This is great, Bentley. Many thanks!
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Re: HISTORY: Detroit, Michigan



PaulH wrote:
This is great, Bentley. Many thanks!




Welcome, there is a lot in this novel.
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Re: HISTORY: Homer

[ Edited ]
Homer's Epics: (The Iliad and The Odyssey)

Who was Homer?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Homer


The Iliad and The Odyssey

http://search.barnesandnoble.com/booksearch/isbnInquiry.asp?z=y&;bnit=H&bnrefer=JEM&EAN=9780760716793&itm=1


The Homer Page:

http://www.gpc.edu/~shale/humanities/literature/world_literature/homer.html

Cal, the narrator refers to Homer on page 4: "Sorry if I get a little Homeric at times. That's genetic, too."

Message Edited by bentley on 06-13-2007 08:19 PM
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Re: HISTORY: The Waste Land by T.S. Eliot

[ Edited ]
About The Waste Land:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Waste_Land

On Line Version:

http://www.bartleby.com/201/1.html

Barnes and Noble copy:

http://search.barnesandnoble.com/booksearch/isbnInquiry.asp?z=y&EAN=9781593082796&itm=1

About Eliot: (The Time Magazine 100)

http://www.time.com/time/time100/artists/profile/eliot.html


"Smyrna endures today in a few rebetica songs and a stanza from "The Waste Land":

Mr, Eugenides, the Smyrna merchant
Unshaven, with a pocketful of currants
C.i.f. London: documents at sight,
Asked me in demotic French
To luncheon at the Cannon Street Hotel
Followed by a weekend at the Metropole.

Everything you need to know about Smyrna is contained in that. The merchant is rich, and so was Smyrna, His proposal was seductive, and so was Smyrna, the most cosmopolitan city in the Near East. Among its reputed founders were, first, the Amazons (which goes nicely with my theme), and second, Tantalus himself. Homer was born there, and Aristotle Onassis. In Smyrna, East and West, opera and politakia, violin and zourna, piano and daouli blended as tastefully as did the rose petals and honey in local pastries." - page 50

Message Edited by bentley on 06-13-2007 08:46 PM
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Re: HISTORY: Prohibition-era Detroit

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Re: HISTORY: Race Riots of 1967

[ Edited ]
Race Riots of Detroit: 1967


http://www.67riots.rutgers.edu/d_index.htm

Message Edited by bentley on 06-13-2007 09:00 PM
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Re: HISTORY: Grosse Pointe, Michigan

The Stephanides family moves to Grosse Pointe, Michigan:


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grosse_Pointe,_Michigan
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Re: HISTORY: Thanks, Bentley



PaulH wrote:
This is great, Bentley. Many thanks!


I want to add my thanks, too, Bentley.
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Re: HISTORY: Bursa (Old Ottoman Capital)

[ Edited ]
"The view was impressive. A thousand feet below lay the old Ottoman capital of Bursa, like a backgammon board spread out across the valley's green felt"....After years of living apart up on the mountain, the people of Bithynios, my grandmother's village, had emerged into the safety of the Megale Idea - the Big Idea, the dream of Greater Greece. It was now Greek troops who occupied Bursa. A Greek flag flew over the former Ottoman palace. The Turks and their leader, Mustafa Kemal, had retreated to Angora in the east. For the first times in their lives the Greeks of Asia Minor were out from under Turkish rule. No longer were the giaours (infidel dogs) forbidden to wear bright clothing or ride horses or use saddles, Never again, as in the last centuries, would Ottoman officials arrive in the village every year, carting off the strongest boys to serve in the Janissaries. Now when the village men took silk to market in Bursa, they were free Greeks, in a free Greek city." page 21

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bursa,_Turkey

Message Edited by bentley on 06-13-2007 09:57 PM
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Re: HISTORY: Thanks, Bentley



CallMeLeo wrote:


PaulH wrote:
This is great, Bentley. Many thanks!


I want to add my thanks, too, Bentley.




You are welcome too. I just thought it would make it worthwhile to capture some of the history, places, references, people on a thread.
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