Caesar vs pp 41 42 sallust compares the two reprising

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Caesar vs. Cato 53-54 (pp. 41-42) Sallust compares the two, reprising his overview of Roman history. Note that both speakers claim to be giving the traditional Roman view, “as our forefathers did” (mos maiorum). It’s possible that in addition to the arguments each speaker gives, Sallust is calling attention to debate itself as a foundation of stable political order. Death on the battlefield Consider the effect produced by the succession of scenes in the last third of the text: debate in the Senate, execution of the conspirators (quickly but powerfully rendered in 55), Catiline’s speech to his followers (58) and the final battle (59-60) with its horrifying aftermath (61). What is the relationship between the scene of debate and the scene of battle (bookending the scene of execution)? Catiline’s battlefield speech: “Our struggle is for fatherland, for freedom, for life; theirs is a superfluous fight, for the power of the few. Therefore attack all the more daringly, mindful of your old-time prowess.” (58.11) “if Fortune begrudges you your prowess, make sure you neither gasp your last without taking vengeance not be captured and butchered like cattle, but, fighting in the manner of true men, leave the enemy with a bloody and grievous victory.” (58.21) Petreius, commanding in place of Antonius, says similar things, but Sallust gives his words briefly and indirectly (59.5-6, pp. 45-46). “... the army of the Roman people had not achieved a delightful or bloodless victory.” 2/26/18 Caesar’s Civil War How did Caesar perceive his own case? not just a narration of the events think about it in terms of ideas that the war could be about defending his prestige and question of peace and clemency - he also represents trying to avoid war What kind of account? Writing a history but drawing on the expectations of other kinds of narratives Reports a general would send to senate Notes of one’s own achievements, as raw material for further elaboration (by oneself or another author) When was it written/published? Caesar presents himself as seeking conciliation, when would such an image have benefitted him?, trying to win people over, anyone who is worried that he’d become a dictator for life, sometime between 49-44 Starting in 46 he shifts closer to being a total dictator Maybe composed close to time of events but circulated after his death? Famous third person style and simple, stripped-down language contribute to an impression of objectivity Narrates events that he was not present to witness Think about the selection and arrangement of events narrated, and the level and kind of detail with which each one is narrated, as well as more obvious effects that occur, eg. in the description of his opponents
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Both this work and his early work on Gaul are continued by other authors Historical context 53 - Caesar needed more troops in Gaul, Pompey had “loaned” him one legion.
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