Cui bono? Cicero's reasons for publication

Coetzee, Chris Rudolf (2017-12)

Thesis (MA)--Stellenbosch University, 2017.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: This study investigates the question whether Cicero published to serve his own glory, or whether he published to serve the commonwealth, in other words, to whose benefit (cui bono) was publication? After exploring the context in which Cicero published, the study considers eight reasons for publication, namely publication to add to his personal glory, to elicit literary favours, to promote his own works, to reply to his critics, to promote a political agenda, to educate society, to promote Latin literature, and to pay compliments. While the study considered all surviving works, I argue that the conference at Luca in 56 BCE and Cicero’s subsequent retirement from politics constituted a watershed, after which his publication habits changed. Therefore, the study focused primarily on the works concerning oratory and philosophy. Important additional information concerning the circumstances of composition and publication were sought in the letters. After considering these various reasons for publication, I come to the conclusion that Cicero's decision to publish was motivated by his quest for personal glory, mostly as a form of rehabilitation after his exile from 58 to 57 BCE. Publishing to serve the commonwealth in the end seems only of secondary concern.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Hierdie studie ondersoek Cicero se redes vir publikasie en probeer vasstel of hy publiseer tot voordeel van sy eie roem of tot voordeel van die gemeenskap, met ander woorde, tot wie se voordeel (cui bono) was publikasie? Na ’n oorsig van die omstandighede en omgewing waarin Cicero publiseer, identifiseer hierdie studie agt redes vir publikasie, naamlik publikasie ter uitbreiding van sy eie roem, tot ontlokking van literêre gunste, ter bevordering van sy eie werke, tot weerlegging van kritici, tot bevordering van politieke doelwitte, tot opvoeding van die gemeenskap, tot bevordering van die Latynse letterkunde, en om te komplimenteer. Alhoewel hierdie studie alle oorblywende werke oorweeg het, argumenteer die studie dat die konferensie by Luca in 56 v.C. en Cicero se daaropvolgende politieke aftrede ’n merkwaardige verandering in sy publikasiegewoontes tot gevolg gehad het. Hierdie studie fokus dus hoofsaaklik op Cicero se retoriese en filosofiese werke. Die briewe is ook ondersoek om belangrike addisionele informasie aan die lig te bring aangaande die omstandighede waaronder hy geskryf en gepubliseer het. Na oorweging van verskeie redes vir publikasie, kom die studie tot die gevolgtrekking dat Cicero se besluit om te publiseer gemotiveer is deur sy behoefte aan persoonlike roem, meestal om die eer wat geskend was tydens sy ballingskap van 58 tot 57 v.C te herstel. Publikasie tot voordeel van die gemeenskap blyk telkens ’n sekondêre motivering te wees.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/102682
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