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By Robert Kaster

Emotion, Restraint, and neighborhood examines the ways that feelings, and discuss feelings, interacted with the ethics of the Roman top sessions within the overdue Republic and early Empire. by way of contemplating how a variety of Roman types of worry, dismay, indignation, and revulsion created an economic climate of displeasure that formed society in confident methods, the publication casts new gentle either at the Romans and on cross-cultural figuring out of feelings.

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In fact, the  BETWEEN RESPECT AND SHAME mutuality of the emotion, its two-way concern for face, is so pervasive that it occurs in contexts where we might not look for it, since our own cultural orientation is rather different. Take nudity, for example. Romans of the elite long thought of themselves as being more reserved about nudity than Greeks, who they believed were ready to get naked on any pretext. In that regard, the Romans might seem very much like typical middle-class North Americans, whose anxiety at the thought of being seen naked in public shapes many a bad dream.

25. ).  EMOTION, RESTRAINT, AND COMMUNITY IN ANCIENT ROME The evidence ranges from the fanciful narratives of myth to the codified principles of law, and the consistency in point of view is enough to suggest that even the thought-world of the fanciful is in this matter closer to the law than might first be supposed. Frequent in all these instances (which could be multiplied fivefold and more), besides the basic structure of the thought, are two other elements. First, there is the prickly imperative to protect my sense of pudor—my sensitivity to seeing myself being seen as devalued—by conspicuously rejecting the damaging view.

Cicero does not elaborate, because of course one gentleman would know what another gentleman meant. I take it he means that speaking in such terms could betray a hint of condescension, framing Atticus in the role of mere adviser and supporter to the “great man” rather than his peer (earlier in the letter Cicero is at pains to stress, not  BETWEEN RESPECT AND SHAME really convincingly, that Atticus’s choice of “tranquillity,” otium, is honorable in a way parallel to his own “political striving,” ambitio).

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