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The Garb of BeingEmbodiment and the Pursuit of Holiness in Late Ancient Christianity$
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Georgia Frank, Susan Holman, and Andrew Jacobs

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9780823287024

Published to Fordham Scholarship Online: May 2020

DOI: 10.5422/fordham/9780823287024.001.0001

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Crowds and Collective Affect in Romanos’s Biblical Retellings

Crowds and Collective Affect in Romanos’s Biblical Retellings

(p.169) Crowds and Collective Affect in Romanos’s Biblical Retellings
The Garb of Being

Georgia Frank

Fordham University Press

This chapter examines the role of internal groupings within the biblical episodes retold in Romanos the Melodist’s (ca. 555) hymns (or, kontakia). Performed for liturgical festivals, these sung sermons allowed congregations to sing along with various biblical groups, whether the three youths in the furnace, the magi, Herod’s army, the Ninevites, or Jesus’s disciples. Shaped by recent work on the collective voices in Greek tragedy, this essay considers how groups allowed congregations to share in the emotional world of the biblical characters, sing for those silenced by ignorance or cowardice, and sing to repent with sinners and repudiate villains.

Keywords:   crowd, emotions, Holy Week, hymnography, laity, Lent, Romanos the Melodist

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