Bernard Knox


Born
in Bradford, Yorkshire, England, The United Kingdom
November 24, 1914

Died
July 22, 2010

Genre


Bernard MacGregor Walker Knox (Ph.D., Classics, Yale University; M.A. Harvard University; B.A., St. Johns College Cambridge, 1936) was a classicist, author, and critic. He taught at Yale until 1961, when he moved on to become the first director of Harvard’s Center for Hellenic Studies in Washington, DC. He was the editor of The Norton Book of Classical Literature and wrote the introductions and notes for Robert Fagles’s translations of the Iliad and the Odyssey.

In 1939 he married American novelist Betty Baur, who wrote under the name Bianca van Orden. He served in the United States Army during World War II, making his way from private to captain between 1942 and 1945 in the European Theatre, and was awarded a Croix de Guerre a l'Ordre de l'
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Average rating: 3.88 · 377,564 ratings · 6,049 reviews · 33 distinct worksSimilar authors
The Norton Book of Classica...

4.15 avg rating — 144 ratings — published 1993 — 2 editions
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The Oldest Dead White Europ...

3.72 avg rating — 122 ratings — published 1993 — 4 editions
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The Heroic Temper: Studies ...

4.14 avg rating — 22 ratings — published 1983 — 3 editions
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Oedipus at Thebes: Sophocle...

4.32 avg rating — 19 ratings — published 1966 — 5 editions
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Essays Ancient and Modern

4.50 avg rating — 12 ratings3 editions
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Backing into the Future: Th...

really liked it 4.00 avg rating — 10 ratings — published 1994 — 2 editions
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Word and Action: Essays on ...

4.60 avg rating — 5 ratings — published 1979 — 2 editions
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The Iliad/The Odyssey/The A...

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4.38 avg rating — 807 ratings — published 600 — 7 editions
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Metamorphoses

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4.06 avg rating — 57,137 ratings — published 8 — 654 editions
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The World of Odysseus

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3.90 avg rating — 734 ratings — published 1954 — 26 editions
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More books by Bernard Knox…
“If through no fault of his own the hero is crushed by a bulldozer in Act II, we are not impressed. Even though life is often like this—the absconding cashier on his way to Nicaragua is killed in a collision at the airport, the prominent statesman dies of a stroke in the midst of the negotiations he has spent years to bring about, the young lovers are drowned in a boating accident the day before their marriage—such events, the warp and woof of everyday life, seem irrelevant, meaningless. They are crude, undigested, unpurged bits of reality—to draw a metaphor from the late J. Edgar Hoover, they are “raw files.” But it is the function of great art to purge and give meaning to human suffering, and so we expect that if the hero is indeed crushed by a bulldozer in Act II there will be some reason for it, and not just some reason but a good one, one which makes sense in terms of the hero’s personality and action. In fact, we expect to be shown that he is in some way responsible for what happens to him.”
Bernard Knox, The Oedipus Cycle: Oedipus Rex, Oedipus at Colonus, Antigone

“Hell hath no fury like a goddess scorned”
Bernard Knox, The Iliad

“Everywhere in Homer's saga of the rage of Achilles and the battles before Troy we are made conscious at one and the same time of war's ugly brutality and what Yeats called its "terrible beauty." The Iliad accepts violence as a permanent factor in human life and accepts it without sentimentality, for it is just as sentimental to pretend that war does not have its monstrous ugliness as it is to deny that it has its own strange and fatal beauty, a power, which can call out in men resources of endurance, courage and self-sacrifice that peacetime, to our sorrow and loss, can rarely command.”
Bernard Knox

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