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Mark Antony and Popular Culture

Masculinity and the Construction of an Icon

Mark Antony and Popular Culture by Rachael Kelly
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Who was Mark Antony? Popular culture remembers him as a deeply flawed character whose excessive appetites cost him an empire. From Shakespeare to the silver screen, Mark Antony’s notoriety for drunkenness and decadence have survived and flourished in contemporary pop culture representations. But drunkenness and decadence were gendered concepts in Roman political discourse, and their use in constructing Mark Antony is not as straightforward as it might appear. In this fascinating account of a classical figure and his reception in popular culture, Rachael Kelly traces the evolution of the Mark Antony myth in Hollywood historical epic film and television. Examining the recurring tropes behind Richard Burton’s Byronic dilettante and James Purefoy’s amoral, impulsive bully-boy, Kelly deftly reveals the part these representations have to play in transmitting and interrogating a discourse of hegemonic masculinity that stretches all the way from Plutarch to the present day. Diplomacy.
I.B.Tauris; June 2014
312 pages; ISBN 9780857735898
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Title: Mark Antony and Popular Culture
Author: Rachael Kelly