A rebel against Victorian mores, Jane Ellen Harrison (1850-1928) became one of the first women to hold a research fellowship at Cambridge. A friend of such distinguished figures as Gilbert Murray and Francis Cornford, she was renowned for her public lectures on Greek art, for her books on Greek religion and mythology, and for her unconventional and outspoken views.
In her application of anthropology to classical studies, Harrison stirred up controversy amongst her academic colleagues, while, at the same time, influencing many writers, including Yeats, D. H. Lawrence, and Virginia Woolf. Driven by the conviction that the study of primitive Greek culture was an intensely practical enterprise, addressing the fundamental emotional needs of all people, she set her academic research in the broader context of human life. Her work on Greek religion is really a
critique of all religion.
Although she was a powerful role model for academic women and addressed issues which were central to the women's movement, when it came to women's rights, her own views were not always in keeping with those of her suffragist contemporaries. Harrison wrote not to champion any cause, but out of a passionate desire to share what she believed to be important and true. In so doing, she both opened up new possibilities for academic women and made a considerable contribution to classical studies.
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Number of pages: 352
Weight: 584 g
Dimensions: 241 x 162 x 22 mm
Annabel Robinson has written an excellent, readable biography of this fascinating woman ... I compliment Robinson for crafting a cohesive and persuasive portrait of an extraordinary woman. * MODERNISM/modernity *
... authoritative biography ... well researched. * Woolf Studies Annual *
The Life and Work of Jane Ellen Harrison is a well-written and lively account of this pivotal figure, one that should interest classical scholars, historians of women , and intellectual historians alike. * The Journal of Classics Teaching *