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University of Iowa News Release


Aug. 27, 2007

UI classicist Peter Green reads from new book on Sept. 7

Peter Green, a University of Iowa classics adjunct faculty member and editor of the journal Syllecta Classica, will read from his new book, "The Hellenistic Age," at 7 p.m. Friday, Sept. 7, in the Prairie Lights bookstore at 15 S. Dubuque St. in downtown Iowa City. Listen live via the Writing University website at

The event will be recorded for broadcast on the "Live from Prairie Lights" series, originating on UI radio station WSUI-AM 910. Hour-long "Live from Prairie Lights" productions, hosted by Julie Englander, air at 8 p.m. and 9 p.m. Saturdays, and 7 p.m. Sundays on WSUI-AM 910 in Iowa City, WOI-AM 640 in Ames and KRNI-AM 1010 in Cedar Falls. A program is also broadcast at 5 p.m. Sundays on KSUI-FM 91.7 in Iowa City.

Green is a leading authority of Alexander the Great, and "The Hellenistic Age: A Short History" surveys the period from Alexander's empire in the fourth century BC to the Roman conquest of Egypt in 30 BC.

A starred review in Publishers Weekly stated, "Although the Hellenistic Age flourished for barely 300 years, its contributions to world history are countless. Eminent historian Green -- whose classic 'Alexander to Actium' remains the most expansive and thorough introduction to the period -- offers a marvelous survey of the key people, places and events of the years from 337 B.C., when Alexander came to power, to the death of Cleopatra in 30 B.C.

"Nimbly weaving history and cultural insights, Green chronicles how Alexander led Macedonia through heroism and canny political alliances. After Alexander's death, power was divided between the Ptolemies, who ruled Egypt, and the Seleucids, who ruled Greece, marking the beginning of the end of the Greek city-states that had been the hallmark of the classical Greek age.

"The civic masculine bonding so pervasive in Alexander's day was replaced by the familial bonding of husband and wife. Science replaced poetry and comedy replaced tragedy as the cultural hallmarks of society. Yet much remained the same: aristocratic rulers still used slaves to do their fighting for them, and monarchs still defied attempts to bring democracy into government. Green's splendid little study provides a brilliant introduction to this crucial transitional period."

Green, Dougherty Centennial Professor Emeritus of Classics in the University of Texas at Austin, is a novelist, poet, translator, fiction critic, film and TV critic, in addition to his career as an historian of antiquity.

His novels include "The Sword of Pleasure," which won the Heinemann Award for Literature, and "The Laughter of Aphrodite," a fictionalization of Sappho's life, and he has contributed poems to many journals.

He has published translations of Juvenal, Ovid, Catullus, Apollonios and Yannis Ritsos, and his other historical works include "The Greco-Persian Wars;" "Ikaria to the Stars: Angles on Classical Mythification, Ancient and Modern"; and "Alexander of Macedon, 356-323 B.C.: A Historical Biography."

Visit Syllecta Classica at

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STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa Arts Center Relations, 300 Plaza Centre One, Suite 351, Iowa City, IA 52242-2500

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