University of Hertfordshire

TV antiquity: Sword, sandals, blood and sand

Research output: Book/ReportBook

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Original languageEnglish
PublisherManchester University Press
Number of pages264
ISBN (Electronic)978-1-5261-0006-1
ISBN (Print)978-1-7849-9532-4
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2019

Publication series

NameThe Television Series
PublisherManchester University Press

Abstract

TV antiquity: Swords, sandals, blood and sand explores representations of ancient Greece and Rome throughout television history. It is the first comprehensive overview of the genre in television and argues that these shows offer a distinct perspective on the ancient world. Magerstädt’s work traces the historic development of fictional representations of antiquity from the staged black-and-white shows of the 1950s and 60s to the most recent digital spectacles. A key argument of the book is that the structure of serial television is at times better suited to explore the complex mythic and historic plots of antiquity. The author uses a range of insightful case studies, from popular serials like I, Claudius (1976) and Rome (2005-8) to lesser known works like The Caesars (1968) or The Eagle of the Ninth (1976) to illustrate how broader cultural, political and economic issues have over time influenced the representation of antiquity in television.

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