Show Summary Details

Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD HANDBOOKS ONLINE ( © Oxford University Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a title in Oxford Handbooks Online for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice).

date: 28 February 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter discusses miscellanies, a type of Second Sophistic writing whose distinguishing features are variety of subject matter and loose organization. The chapter starts out by acknowledging the difficulty of grasping “the miscellany” as a genre: as it argues, socio-cultural approaches to genre are more appropriate than formalistic ones, if we seek to address the question of these works’ readership and appeal. Accordingly, the chapter links miscellanies with imperial Greco-Roman reading culture, by investigating the aesthetic and cognitive advantages of variety (variatio/poikilia). Further, it demonstrates that miscellanies actively engage with key ideals and concerns of Second Sophistic culture, such as paideia and identity, by constructing differing models of polymathy, and by exploring different facets of identity (class, cultural, or gender).

Keywords: miscellanies, variety, variatio, poikilia, organization, genre, imperial reading culture, paideia, polymathy, identity

Access to the complete content on Oxford Handbooks Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can''t find the answer there, please contact us.