Thursday, April 18, 2019

Cleopatra - Her Influence & Effect on Culture Essay

Cleopatra - Her Influence & Effect on Culture - evidence ExampleWhat make Cleopatras influence on culture so strong are the scarce facts of her vitality. Ascending the throne at a tender age of 17, she was forced to go into exile 3 years later. Languishing in exile in Arabia, she mustered all her resources in raising an army. The romantic side of her life has added to the allure of her legend. This includes her enchantment of Caesar (smuggling herself into the royal palace, according to Plutarch, in a rolled-up sack) and her legendary appearance, dressed as Aphrodite in a gilded boat, before Mark Antony. Even Shakespeares febrile description of the spectacle -- So perfumed that/The winds were love-sick -- is build on contemporary accounts. (Denny, 2001, p.40) But her relevance to the contemporary world is not something immutable, as demonstrated by recent developments surrounding her legacy. As historians utilize forensic and other advanced research techniques to revise diachro nic accounts, many unknown facts pertaining to iconic figures like Cleopatra have emerged. One such(prenominal) is the logical deduction by American scholar Martin Bernal (the most prominent of a long line of Afro-centrist classical historians). Bernal claims that most previous historians underestimated the culture of Egypt as they were unwilling to acknowledge that Greek, and by extension all European, civilization had its beginnings in Africa. But, give thanks to Bernal, this Afro-centrist view became more acceptable - indeed more fashionable to articulate. The clearest manifestation of this change in earthly cin one casern perception and acceptance of historical facts is witnessed in the British theatre scene. In the summer of 1991 two productions of Shakespeares Antony and Cleopatra were campaign in London. In each of themCleopatra was played by a black actress one of whom, Donna Croll of the Talawa Theatre Company, told a reporter the fable of the whiteCleopatra is just anot her way of bleaching out history... Just asCleopatra had previously been co-opted into playing a part in discussions about the ethics of suicide, the status of a wife and the comparative degree merits of aristocratic or autocratic goernment, so in the last years of the twentieth speed of light she found herself at the centre of a debate about race relations. (Hughes-Hallett, 2006, p.70) It should be remembered that Egypt and Rome of first century BCE were multi-racial societies. Being the centers trade and politics, the cities hosted tens of thousands of slaves. Cleopatras father was a Ptolemy, his stock being derived from descendants of one of horse parsleys generals. His roots could be traced to Macedonia, where natives tend to be fair of skin color. Theoretically he, and all his forebears for over two centuries, had been the offspring of incestuous brother-sister marriages, and were therefore purebred (as well as inbred) Greeks. In fact, it occurred more than once that the heir to the throne of Ptolemaic Egypt was the child of a royal concubine of unrecorded origin. Cleopatra was one such case. We do not know who her mother was. (Hughes-Hallett, 2006, p.70) It is highly likely that Cleopatra was thus inter-racial, thus adding to her exoticism. The fact

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