Poet and Hero in the Persian Book of Kings
Olga M. Davidson, Ph.D. 1983
A milestone in Persian Classical literature, Ferdowsi’s Book of Kings evokes a long span of Iranian history and myths following a chronicle of its kings from the creation of the world to the conquest of Iran by the armies of the Moslem Arabs in the latter half of the seventh century. Drawing on comprehensive research in oral poetics and epic traditions, as well as on her own thoughtful reading of other monumental works of world literature which have been so influential in shaping our present day notions of national and cultural identity, Professor Davidson enhances our understanding of the relationship between myth and epic and orality and literary history. The theoretically radical rethinking of long held assumptions are buttressed by meticulous references to the text itself, providing the readers with ample opportunity to assess the evidence for the searching questions provided by the book in the closely connected fields of comparative literature and religion, and literary theory and history.