Why the myth of Daedalus, the protos euretes, is connected with envy and murder? The author takes as his starting point Ovid’s Metamorphoses, where Daedalus’ envy drives him to murder his pupil and nephew Perdix. He also considers the passage of Seneca the Elder, about the painter Parrhasius and the citizen from Olynthus, that he had tortured in order to paint the agony of Prometheus. The first case is a topos of the artist’s biography which implies, that the craft of the artisan was held as a guarded secret; the second is related to mimesis. The author questions what role the topos of the artist as murderer plays in text and imagery, from the Middle Ages to modern literature.
This volume deals with the dissolution of the concept of the ideal body as a repository of knowledge through instances of deformation or hybridization
The starting point comprises a series of case studies of less than perfect bodies: bodies that are misshapen, stigmatized, fragmented, as well as hybrid human/animal creatures, transgendered persons, and bodies on the cultural periphery of the classical world. These examples represent deviations from the »normal« order of things and evoke feelings of alienation. One strategy for dealing with this is to canonize transgression in visual form. Fluid bodies are captured in the image, creating a visual order in disorder. The body-as-ruin is a fixed figure of fluidity and thus receptive to attributions of meaning, which helps explain its persistence as a cultural trope. It allows for the observation of cultural change.