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EL-336, Havelock. Chapter 9. The spsecial Theory of Greek Orality

"In the history of the Greek written word, the earliest Greek text composed throughout as a text may be that of Hesiod, and this despite the fact that his language is basically Homeric, retaining all the formulaic character of orally preserved verse." (Havelock. The Muse Learns to Write)
Hesiod wrote, but retained all the characteristics of oral verse. Persuaded by the Greek past of preserving the word by memory. Hesiod wrote what Homer spoke, not his words, but his style, he did this by describing the persons and functions. A story tells the actions of a character or event,it more or less shows, while the narrative explains the character(s) and event(s) by a series of describing, it tells. Greek orators were narrators, while writers, such as Hesiod told by writing their memory down.


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That's a good point. The narrator does not just read the poem; in fatc, he acts it. What is acting but speaking with emotion, emphasizng important parts of the speech? That makes Homer the playwright and Hesoid his ghostwriter. The Illiad/Odessey are scripts, to be read not with monotone, but with inflection.

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