Press Release: Wyke, Caesar
When Julius Caesar’s assassins walked out of the Roman Senate, they had no way of knowing that the man whose body they left behind would rise to unparalleled prominence in death, becoming as much a myth as a man. A potent symbol of everything from hubris to the good life, Caesar has become one of the central icons of Western culture, instantly familiar to schoolchildren and scholars alike.
Caesar is classicist Maria Wyke’s witty, irreverent tour of the Caesar legend, a deeply learned but lively look at just what it is about this man that has fascinated us for two millennia. Focusing on key moments from Caesar’s life, Wyke shows how, in era after era, Caesar’s story is reworked and reconfigured to suit the needs of countless cultural and historical figures, from Mussolini to Madison Avenue. Her knowledge is broad and surprising, encompassing Plutarch’s Lives and Xena: Warrior Princess, Caesars Palace and the Annals of Tacitus—and with each reconfiguration of the Caesar story, we get another glimpse of the astonishing power this long-dead dictator still exerts over our cultural imagination.
Filled with anecdotes and thoroughly contemporary, Caesar will entertain and elucidate friends, Romans, and countrymen alike.
Read the press release.
Also read an excerpt.