‘My soul, consider what you should do’: Psychological Conflicts and Moral Goodness in the Greek Novels
This article examines the purport of conflicts concerned with ethical goodness, as opposed to purely emotional conflicts (“what is the right thing to do?” rather than just, “what pleases me most?”), in the Greek “ideal” novels. It argues that each novel makes idiosyncratic uses of such conflicts in accordance with its narrative techniques and thought-world, that is, the set of values, moral, philosophical and theological, which underlies the characters’ behavior and structures the plot.
Silvia Montiglio (PhD École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales, Paris) is professor of Classics at Johns Hopkins University (USA). Her publications include Silence in The Land of Logos (Princeton University Press, 2000), Wandering in Ancient Greek Culture (The University of Chicago Press, 2005) and a number of articles on various subjects, among which Apuleius.