Cicero Portraying Cicero

Author: Kaster, Robert A.
Title: Cicero Portraying Cicero
Review/Collection: In : Berno, Francesca Romana & La Bua, Giuseppe [Edd.], Portraying Cicero in Literature, Culture, and Politics. From Ancient to Modern Times, Berlin, De Gruyter, 2022, 483 p. [Berno & La Bua 2022]
Place edition: Berlin
Editor: De Gruyter
Year edition: 2022
Pages: 1-12
Keywords: Biographie - Biografia - Biography, Stylistique et genres littéraires - Stilistica e generi letterari - Stylistics and literary genre
Description: This opening essay introduces the figure of Cicero as a brilliant first-person storyteller. It shows that, by building a private narrative of his exile in the letters and offering a different public story of his ‘heroic’ return to Italy in the post reditum speeches, Cicero presented a twosided image of himself. Contrasting with Cicero’s private self-portrait as a feeble and timid man, terribly aware of inflicting sufferance on himself and his beloved Terentia and children because of his cowardice, the story narrated in the speeches depicts Cicero as a good man and good citizen, a patriot destroying his civic self for the sake of the Republican liberty. Adapting his narrative to present needs Cicero did for himself what later intellectuals and writers would do over the course of many centuries. He built – and propagated – different personae of himself. [Berno & La Bua 2022, xiv]
Author initials: Kaster 2022