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Category: Pericles and Aspasia

Pericles and Aspasia Cover

PERICLES AND ASPASIA — Novel Set In Ancient Greece Features Real Life Historical Feminist Figure Defying Social Customs”

Pericles and Aspasia CoverAspasia, a courtesan from ancient Greece, and one of the most influential women of the ancient world, was the mistress of Pericles, leader of the Athenian democracy. In connection with the novel I wrote, PERICLES AND ASPASIA: A Story of Ancient Greece, I was asked to write an article about Aspasia for GIRLTALKHQ . The article is entitled, Novel Set In Ancient Greece Features Real Life Historical Feminist Figure Defying Social Customs

Here is how I summed up Aspasia’s impact:

“When women were expected to lead narrow, confined lives, Aspasia was strong in the face of obstacles, courageous in the face of slander, unabashed by fame, persistent in moving toward her goals, unafraid to reveal her intelligence, and worthy of being influential. And moving beyond her own challenges and the advantages she was able to create for herself, she was a teacher, enabling the lives of others including, it seems, of women and girls. As a woman of her time and within the limits it presented, she is a role model for women today faced with obstacles on the path to achieving what they see as good and worthy in life. And she is an inspiration.”

To read more about Aspasia, GIRLTALKHQ

PERICLES AND ASPASIA is in the Indie Spotlight featured in Publishers Weekly.


Pericles and Aspasia by Yvonne Korshak

Pericles and Aspasia: A Story of Ancient Greece, from Book Life — an Editor’s Pick

The fiction debut of Korshak, a professor at Adelphi University, brings vital life to the golden age of Athens, in a story rich with character, romance, striking historical detail, and spirited public debate on topics foundational to our civilization. The novel centers, as the title suggests, on Pericles, the Athenian statesman and orator known for his democratic values and championing of learning, and his Aspasia, the courtesan whom Pericles will risk his position and reputation to love. “Look at the company he keeps, they’ll say of you,” the great sculptor Phidias says to Pericles, “whores, philosophers and sculptors.”

But Korshak makes clear, in memorable scenes, that this supportive partnership didn’t just bring them comfort, happiness, and a child: it shaped history.Epic-length as well as the kick-off to a longer series, Pericles and Aspasia offers rousing speeches, naval battles, passionate embraces, rebellion, and political intrigue as Pericles strives to hold together the allied cities of the Athenian League. But Korshak sets her novel apart through its lively evocation of the civic life, art, culture, and gossip that make cities great. The pages pulse with talk that’s alternately philosophical, lofty, witty, and dishy. Early on, flirting with Aspasia, Pericles ruminates on how a recent comic play called him “our cucumber-headed Zeus.” Much later, he’ll ask “So, Aspasia, since you’ve read Antigone, do you think Sophocles means the autocratic Creon to be me?”

This immersion in Athenian life will thrill readers fascinated with the grain of lives far removed from our own—but still concerned with similar pressing issues of justice and governance. Historic notables (Euripides, Herodotus, Thucydides, Hippodamus) never make mere cameos: they inveigh, debate, even—especially in the case of that ol’ gadfly Socrates—joke. “I could prove you’re more expert, but by winning the argument, I’d lose it,” he says, drawing a clear line from 5th century B.C. to Shakespeare’s clowns to Groucho Marx.

Takeaway: A stellar, epic-length evocation of the golden age of Athens, rich with historical insight.

Great for fans of: Christian Meier’s Athens: A Portrait of the City in its Golden Age, Mary Renault.

“An insightful depiction of a passionate relationship.”

                                                                    Kirkus Reviews

Available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Booktopia, and on local online booksellers worldwide.

Cape Sounion Athens as Aspasia Might Have Seen It

Cape Sounion Athens as Aspasia Might Have Seen It




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