By Frederic Raphael
From the acclaimed biographer, screenwriter, and novelist Frederic Raphael, this is an audacious historical past of Josephus (37–c.100), the Jewish basic grew to become Roman historian, whose emblematic betrayal is a touchstone for the Jew on my own within the Gentile world.
Joseph ben Mattathias’s transformation into Titus Flavius Josephus, historian to the Roman emperor Vespasian, is a gripping and dramatic tale. His lifestyles, within the palms of Frederic Raphael, turns into some extent of departure for an appraisal of Diasporan Jews looking a spot within the dominant cultures they inhabit. Raphael brings a scholar’s rigor, a historian’s viewpoint, and a novelist’s mind's eye to this undertaking. He is going past the interesting info of Josephus’s lifestyles and his singular literary achievements to envision how Josephus has been seen through posterity, discovering in him the prototype for the un-Jewish Jew, the assimilated highbrow, and the abiding apostate: the recurrent figures within the lengthy centuries of the Diaspora. Raphael’s insightful images of Yehuda Halevi, Baruch Spinoza, Karl Kraus, Benjamin Disraeli, Ludwig Wittgenstein, and Hannah Arendt expand and remove darkness from the Josephean worldview Raphael so eloquently lays out.
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Additional resources for A Jew Among Romans: The Life and Legacy of Flavius Josephus
Aug. 15. See Syme 1939, 212; Osgood 2006, 172. According to Gradel 2002b, 235 human sacrifices are incompatible with Roman religiosity. This does not disprove the claims made against Octavian, but it might just be propaganda. 45 Perusia missing from the RG, see Syme 1939, 523; Ridley 2003, 76; Osgood 2006, 182. To none of them is seems important why Perusia was perhaps not mentioned. There is a lot of civil war in RG 1–3, so that can hardly be the answer. the triumvirate 29 Octavian mounted and for a time it seemed that they might come to blows, when the legions of Octavian did not admit the ships of Antonius to the harbour.
There is a debate amongst scholars whether Octavian/Augustus ‘copied’ Caesar or Cicero in especially RG 1, but perhaps this is after all not that important. Octavian used labels familiar to a Roman readership, how else would he have explained his actions? There was no alternative set of notions Octavian could have used and thus he used ‘res publica’, however he chose to define it. 11 Pompeius and Caesar had done the same (Syme 1939, 155), as Sulla before them (App. C. 1; 8 Yavetz 1984, 14–15, argues that we ought not to rigorously accept the tripartite division.
Ridley also stresses that the chapter does not explain itself, and this might be true, at least to the modern reader (97). The triumvirate does not get mentioned. In the chapter on ‘Lies’ he observes that Antonius not Octavian defeated them in battle (167). See also Hardy 1923, 31; Brunt and Moore 1967, 40. This might in principle be true, but he was one of two generals with imperium and thus there is nothing wrong, apart from the missing name of Antonius. This was a joint operation, but it is also obvious that Augustus did not want to share his filial pietas with anybody.
A Jew Among Romans: The Life and Legacy of Flavius Josephus by Frederic Raphael