LISTENER

Joshua

ASBURY, NJ, United States
  • 16
  • reviews
  • 178
  • helpful votes
  • 127
  • ratings
  • The Greek Myths

  • By: Robert Graves
  • Narrated by: Matt Bates
  • Length: 19 hrs and 55 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 65
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 59
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 61

Including many of the greatest stories ever told - the labours of Hercules, the voyage of the Argonauts, Theseus and the minotaur, Midas and his golden touch, the Trojan War and Odysseus's journey home - Robert Graves's superb and comprehensive retelling of the Greek myths for a modern audience has been regarded for over fifty years as the definitive version. With a novelist's skill and a poet's eye, Graves draws on the entire canon of ancient literature, bringing together all the elements of every myth into one epic and unforgettable story.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A Definitive Collection of Myth (in all variants)

  • By Joshua on 02-04-14

A Definitive Collection of Myth (in all variants)

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 02-04-14

When reading greek myths it is important to remember that there were no orthodoxies in the ancient Greek religious system. The worship and stories of Gods and Heroes varied from place to place throughout the Hellenic world. What is so fabulous about Robert Graves is he does not just recount the most excepted version of the myth but rather depicts them all. He also points out if he feels a version of a myth was created or altered by a tragedian or poet. However, Graves collection of the greek myths are not for the beginner; a general working knowledge of the gods, heroes, the timeline and family lineage is a must. I truly recommend this book to any lover of the greeks and their mythology.

16 of 16 people found this review helpful

  • Classical Mythology

  • By: Elizabeth Vandiver, The Great Courses
  • Narrated by: Elizabeth Vandiver
  • Length: 12 hrs and 25 mins
  • Original Recording
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,624
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,440
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,429

These 24 lectures are a vibrant introduction to the primary characters and most important stories of classical Greek and Roman mythology. Among those you'll investigate are the accounts of the creation of the world in Hesiod's Theogony and Ovid's Metamorphoses; the gods Zeus, Apollo, Demeter, Persephone, Hermes, Dionysos, and Aphrodite; the Greek heroes, Theseus and Heracles (Hercules in the Roman version); and the most famous of all classical myths, the Trojan War.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • the Facts behind the Myth

  • By Joshua on 11-05-13

the Facts behind the Myth

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 11-05-13

This is my third Great Course and second by Professor Elizabeth Vandiver. Vandiver is simply wonderful; her lectures are not only full of information and insight but also ingeniously organized to increase understanding. I wish she had been one of my professors in college because she is THAT compelling. If you are familiar with myth but are looking for more about the history and context of the myths then this course is perfect for you. I also highly recommend that if you enjoy these lectures that you listen to Professor Vandiver's lectures on Greek Tragedy as well.

43 of 43 people found this review helpful

  • The Terror of History: Mystics, Heretics, and Witches in the Western Tradition

  • By: Teofilo F. Ruiz, The Great Courses
  • Narrated by: Teofilo F. Ruiz
  • Length: 12 hrs and 24 mins
  • Original Recording
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 275
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 250
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 244

Western civilization is closely associated with reason and science, and with exceptional accomplishments in art, architecture, music, and literature.Yet it has also been characterized by widespread belief in the supernatural and the irrational - with mystics who have visions of the divine and entire movements of people who wait in fervent anticipation of the apocalypse.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • For those who wonder why

  • By Christina on 10-07-13

Listener Beware

Overall
3 out of 5 stars
Performance
3 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 11-05-13

These lectures are excellent source of knowledge about the nature religion and how religion can become hysteria. However, while Professor Ruiz is wonderfully knowledgeable he can at times be difficult to understand because of his accent. It took me a little bit time to get used to his pronunciation and speech pattern. But once I was accustom it was smooth sailing.

8 of 15 people found this review helpful

  • Greek Tragedy

  • By: Elizabeth Vandiver, The Great Courses
  • Narrated by: Elizabeth Vandiver
  • Length: 12 hrs and 30 mins
  • Original Recording
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 196
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 175
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 174

Greek tragedy was a dramatic form that flourished for less than a full century. And yet it remains vibrant, alive, and productive today. And the form's masterpieces help us-as perhaps they helped their original audiences-grasp a fuller sense of the terror and wonder of life. Professor Vandiver has designed these 24 rich and rewarding lectures to give you a full overview of Greek tragedy, both in its original setting and as a lasting contribution to the artistic exploration of the human condition.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Theatre History Done Right!

  • By Joshua on 10-19-13

Theatre History Done Right!

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 10-19-13

Professor Elizabeth Vandiver provides a clear and succinct portrayal of Greek Tragedy. The lectures discuss how tragedy was developed, the three extant tragic playwrights, as well as the ways in which Greek Tragedy was staged. For as a professional theatre artist myself, I think many people look at Greek Tragedy as simply literature but in truth it was meant to be preformed. Professor Vandiver's facts are well researched and when she does give her own scholarly opinion she informs the listener. She also is very clear that the evidence on which our knowledge of this period are based is very scant, therefore the listeners should also be cautious of taking opinions as fact. However, I would warn a listeners that if you do not have a basic knowledge of Greek Mythology and/or Greek Theatre you may have a hard time following parts of the lecture. This course does assume that you come to the table with some knowledge.

16 of 16 people found this review helpful

  • Cleopatra

  • A Life
  • By: Stacy Schiff
  • Narrated by: Robin Miles
  • Length: 14 hrs and 16 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 1,084
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 652
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 667

Her palace shimmered with onyx, garnets, and gold, but was richer still in political and sexual intrigue. Above all else, Cleopatra was a shrewd strategist and an ingenious negotiator. Though her life spanned fewer than 40 years, it reshaped the contours of the ancient world. Cleopatra appears to have had sex with only two men. They happen, however, to have been Julius Caesar and Mark Antony.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A pretty good listen.

  • By Shaun on 04-21-11

Not "just" a Biography!

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 10-16-13

This book is no mere biography of Cleopatra's life. The author paints a vivid portrait of the end of the Hellenistic Period. For to understand Cleopatra's life you need to understand the places she went, the people she knew, and the times she inhabited; Cleopatra was as much a product of her times as the times were a product of her life. Stacy Shift interweaves fact with narrative flawlessly and engages the reader with such rich language that at moments I forgot I was reading non-fiction. Robin Miles narration is both relaxing yet filled with passion. This was my second time listening to the book and I will most likely be listening a third time in the near future! It is simply that fabulous!

9 of 9 people found this review helpful

  • Great American Music: Broadway Musicals

  • By: Bill Messenger, The Great Courses
  • Narrated by: Bill Messenger
  • Length: 11 hrs and 57 mins
  • Original Recording
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 412
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 376
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 370

Rodgers and Hart. George and Ira Gershwin. Cole Porter. Lerner and Loewe. For most people who've grown up with and shared America's musical heritage, great songs open the floodgates to memories and feelings. Perhaps nowhere is this more profound than in the world of Broadway musicals, with their iconic melodies and memorable lyrics.Revisit the standards, originally written for the stage, that have both delighted and helped mend the broken hearts of Americans for decades.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • More than just a lesson on Musical Theatre!!!

  • By Joshua on 10-13-13

More than just a lesson on Musical Theatre!!!

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 10-13-13

This fabulous course gives an excellent history of the American musical with the focus placed firmly where it should be... on the music. Professor Messenger's voice is relaxing and knowledge is impressive. He paints the picture of history with both facts and narrative but also gives the audience a taste of the music he is describing through his on piano renditions, recordings from the period, and reconstructed recordings where no original recording exists. As a theatre artist and musical theatre professional, I found this course to be both edifying and enjoyable, which are the two things that any great piece of theatre should be. For this course is more then just a lesson on musical theatre it is a piece of theatre itself.

24 of 25 people found this review helpful

  • Coming Out Under Fire

  • The History of Gay Men and Women in World War ll
  • By: Allan Berube
  • Narrated by: Victor Bevine
  • Length: 12 hrs and 39 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 58
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 54
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 54

During World War II, as the United States called on its citizens to serve in unprecedented numbers, the presence of gay Americans in the armed forces increasingly conflicted with the expanding anti-homosexual policies and procedures of the military. In Coming Out Under Fire, Allan Berube examines in depth and detail these social and political confrontations - not as a story of how the military victimized homosexuals, but as a story of how a dynamic power relationship developed.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Bringing the Armed Services Out of the Closet

  • By Susie on 12-06-12

More then just History

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 09-28-13

This book was so much more then just a history of gay men and women during WWII. It was a testament to where LGBT rights have been and where they are going. I was fascinated to discover that the roots of so much LGBT culture developed from the strange liberation that war time afforded some gays and lesbians. And the narrator read the book as if it were a narrative; never once did I feel like facts where just being thrown at me. I always felt engaged. If you are looking for a great new history book to read I highly recommend this one!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Antigone

  • By: Jean Anouilh
  • Narrated by: Elizabeth Marvel, Full Cast
  • Length: 1 hr and 47 mins
  • Original Recording
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 99
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 75
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 75

The body of Polynices, Antigone's brother, has been ordered to remain unburied by Creon, the new king of Thebes. Antigone defies the law, sealing her fate. Originally produced in Paris during the Nazi occupation, Anouilh's Antigone was seen by the French as theatre resistance and by Germans as an affirmation of authority.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A classic is given a fabulous update!

  • By Joshua on 09-28-13

A classic is given a fabulous update!

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 09-28-13

I picked up this play because I am currently directing Antigone by Jean Anouilh (but a different translation). I wanted to get an idea of how this story was changed from the original by Sophocles. And I was so delighted to find the adaptation fresh, new and alive. The LA Theatre Works' actors do such a stellar job that while I was listening to the play I found myself closing my eyes to imagine the how the actors where moving on stage. If you are a lover of myths, classics, and/or theatre then you MUST listen to this play.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • A Dangerous Inheritance

  • By: Alison Weir
  • Narrated by: Maggie Mash
  • Length: 25 hrs and 46 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 178
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 160
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 163

Historian and New York Times best-selling author Alison Weir is acclaimed for her absorbing works about the infamous House of York and House of Tudor lines. In A Dangerous Inheritance, Weir uses her wealth of knowledge to craft a compelling novel about two women, living 70 years apart, who are linked through the mysterious disappearance of King Richard III's nephews, Edward V and Richard of Shrewsbury - also known as the Princes in the Tower.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Not Weir's Best

  • By Joshua on 01-08-13

Not Weir's Best

Overall
3 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 01-08-13

While the story is interesting, the novel is not quite as well crafted as Weir's three other fiction novels (which are amazing and are must reads). My biggest issue with the book is that I don't know how the two characters and two stories fit together. I feel that the stories would work much better as two separate novels. I feel that the tale of the princes in the tower is a weak through line to connect these two women. It is not that this book is "bad" but when you compare it to Weir's other books it does fall a little flat.

18 of 18 people found this review helpful

  • The Swimming Pool Library

  • By: Alan Hollinghurst
  • Narrated by: Samuel West
  • Length: 12 hrs and 22 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 202
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 141
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 141

This novel centres on the friendship of William Beckwith, a young gay aristocrat who leads a life of privilege and promiscuity, and the elderly Lord Nantwich, who is searching for someone to write his biography.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Offers Insight

  • By Here-and-faraway on 07-06-13

Was there even a story!!!???

Overall
2 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
1 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 11-15-12

While the book was beautifully written with vivid language and distinct characters where the hell was the plot???? There was no plot and by the end there was no resolution for any of the characters. However Samuel West did an amazing job as the narrator. He is the only reason i finished the book!

2 of 5 people found this review helpful