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Book Title: Caesars kvinder|
The author of the book: Colleen McCullough
Edition: Chr. Erichsen
Date of issue: 1996
ISBN: No data
ISBN 13: No data
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 3.62 MB
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Reader ratings: 5.7
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In Caesar's Women, McCullough finally hits her storytelling stride. Caesar really comes to life, and what a life that is. McCullough is a sympathetic biographer who persuasively fills in the historical outline for Caesar's political career in the fourth novel in her Masters of Rome series, covering roughly ten years. The novel reflects the important women in his life, his mother Aurelia, his daughter Julia, and his mistress Servilia, with minor roles played by his last two wives Pomponia and Calpurnia. The title also alludes to Caesar's prolific female conquests, which McCullough imagines came about due to a marriage between Caesar's strong sexual appeal to women of all classes and his political need to take his rivals down a notch (as well as to prove that he wasn't gay, which was whispered by his envious rivals to a homophobic Roman society).
McCullough admits in her author's note that this novel has the richest historical source material, thereby being much covered by modern writers but also allowing her to detail the patrician Roman woman's life better. It's rather telling that McCullough has convinced this modern woman, who disdains powerful philanderers and suspects sexual psychopathy in individuals who hurt others through repeated casual use, that Caesar not only cared for the women in his life, but that they fully accepted who and what he was. Roman wives of the pre-Christian era expected their husbands to be incontinent; sex was a male bodily hunger that had little to do with marriage. Moreover, marriage was a legal relationship that didn't require fidelity on the man's part.
Besides showing Caesar's domestic relationships, which underpin his political life, McCullough weaves a story of his increasingly hostile interactions with the boni, a group of ultra-conservative Senators who oppose anything Caesar does out of personal animosity. Caesar intends to be the First Man in Rome, to enlarge his personal dignitas until it is synonymous with Rome's, but he wants to make Rome greater in doing so. The boni, however, are quite determined to prevent any man from being greater than his peers. They simultaneously acknowledge Caesar's greater ability while insisting that he can't be greater than they are. They fear that he will make himself a king.
For modern political junkies, reading the ever-increasing dysfunction of the Roman Republic's last days is quite eye-opening. Roman government grinds to a standstill as powerful Senators maneuver to block one another, or bribe electors and jurists, or interpret law to suit their exigencies, or manipulate legal calendars to take advantage of magistrates' short terms in office. Caesar, while a catalyst for some of the filibustering and gridlock, is also capable of cutting the Gordian knot and ruling with a firm, brilliant hand. Although it takes years, decades even, to bring Caesar to his breaking point, McCullough painstakingly lays the groundwork for his famous ride over the Rubicon and his eventual assassination by his implacable, envious enemies.
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Read information about the authorColleen Margaretta McCullough was an Australian author known for her novels, her most well-known being The Thorn Birds and Tim.
Raised by her mother in Wellington and then Sydney, McCullough began writing stories at age 5. She flourished at Catholic schools and earned a physiology degree from the University of New South Wales in 1963. Planning become a doctor, she found that she had a violent allergy to hospital soap and turned instead to neurophysiology – the study of the nervous system's functions. She found jobs first in London and then at Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut.
After her beloved younger brother Carl died in 1965 at age 25 while rescuing two drowning women in the waters off Crete, a shattered McCullough quit writing. She finally returned to her craft in 1974 with Tim, a critically acclaimed novel about the romance between a female executive and a younger, mentally disabled gardener. As always, the author proved her toughest critic: "Actually," she said, "it was an icky book, saccharine sweet."
A year later, while on a paltry $10,000 annual salary as a Yale researcher, McCullough – just "Col" to her friends – began work on the sprawling The Thorn Birds, about the lives and loves of three generations of an Australian family. Many of its details were drawn from her mother's family's experience as migrant workers, and one character, Dane, was based on brother Carl.
Though some reviews were scathing, millions of readers worldwide got caught up in her tales of doomed love and other natural calamities. The paperback rights sold for an astonishing $1.9 million.
In all, McCullough wrote 11 novels.
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