ABOUT THIS BOOK
One of the best books ever written on one of humanity’s greatest epics, W. R. Johnson’s classic study of Vergil’s Aeneid challenges centuries of received wisdom. Johnson rejects the political and historical reading of the epic as a record of the glorious prehistory of Rome and instead foregrounds Vergil’s enigmatic style and questioning of the heroic myths.
With an approach to the text that is both grounded in scholarship and intensely personal, and in a style both rhetorically elegant and passionate, Johnson offers readings of specific passages that are nuanced and suggestive as he focuses on the “somber and nourishing fictions” in Vergil’s poem. A timeless work of scholarship, Darkness Visible will enthrall classicists as well as students and scholars of the history of criticism—specifically the way in which politics influence modern readings of the classics—and of poetry and literature.