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Synopsis

Apuleius great work is not read enough. As the story of an libertine who is unfortunately changed into an ass unfolds, we see a satire unfold that provides both entertainment and a biting commentary of life in the ancient Greco-Roman world. The book shows you the great distance between us moderns and the ancients, but what is likely to surprise you the most is precisely the opposite: those ways in which we are so similar.

Lucius Apuleius was one of the main representatives of North African Platonism during the second century (AD). He wrote works ranging from philosophy and medicine to poetry and rhetoric. Apuleius is best known for his remarkable collection of tales, The Golden Ass or Transformations. It is a playful satire containing the use of many different genres, much like one would find in the Mennepian satires of Petronius, Seneca, Fulgentius, or Macrobius. It is a complex and enthralling work in which interpretation is always open-ended. Apuleius use of allegory, his exceptional talent for imagery, and his rhythmic and often poetic prose, make this text a challenge and a joy to read at the same time. The Golden Ass is definitely a masterpiece of Latin literature and can also argue of being the worlds first novel.

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