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Homeric VoicesDiscourse, Memory, Gender$
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Elizabeth Minchin

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780199280124

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199280124.001.0001

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Questions in the Odyssey: Rhythm and Regularity

Questions in the Odyssey: Rhythm and Regularity

(p.74) 3 Questions in the Odyssey: Rhythm and Regularity
Homeric Voices

Elizabeth Minchin (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

This chapter begins a study of the question forms in Homer. It represents an attempt to identify some of the habits that a poet within an oral tradition had to develop, and some of the techniques on which he came to rely, in order to generate works on a monumental scale. The chapter offers an account of the observable regularities in question forms in Homer's Odyssey: exemplary adjacency pairs, careful use of explanatory material, a predictable range of options for the presentation of question-strings, whether double or multiple questions, and the answers they attract. Stylized rhythmical and structural patterns based on everyday talk have been developed by the tradition to facilitate and sustain poetic composition in an oral context.

Keywords:   question form, adjacency pair, double questions, multiple questions, question-string, stylization, everyday talk

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