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Theory and Practice in Ancient Egyptian Literature

Theory and Practice in Ancient Egyptian Literature

(p.1) 1 Theory and Practice in Ancient Egyptian Literature
Ancient Egyptian Literature
Verena M. LepperRoland Enmarch
British Academy

This introductory chapter discusses briefly the history of the study of Egyptian literature, highlighting how broader developments in the theory of literature have come to be applied within Egyptology, and outlining the significant interpretative issues that still remain. This is particularly acute when studying a civilisation such as Ancient Egypt, with an only fragmentarily preserved literate culture, and no continuous tradition of reception to condition modern engagement with the ancient texts. The chapter reviews the approaches taken by contributors to the volume, and evaluates how they relate to recent developments in the application of theoretically informed approaches to Egyptian texts. The range of topics covered demonstrates the vitality and diversity of current Egyptological engagement with Ancient Egyptian texts.

Keywords:   Egyptian literature, literary theory, Egyptology, textual transmission, text reception

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