Review by: Jeanne Neumann O'Neil, The Classical Outlook - July 11, 2001
William Anderson's Why Horace? addresses the Advanced Placement Latin student who may have voiced the complaint of the title "Why do I (or we) have to read Horace of all people?" (v). The book's focus is Horace the lyric poet; with the exception of Anderson's essay on Satire 1.9, the various articles treat poems from Odes 1-3 exclusively, in keeping with the book's AP audience. Why Horace? comprises 21 articles: 11 on Odes 1, four articles each on Odes 2 and 3, one on Odes 4.7 and one on Satire 1.9. Each article is preceded by the editor's introductory note; sometimes he adds a note of disagreement with the article.
Anderson authored four of the articles, including the only one first appearing in this volume. The remaining articles, written by well-known Horatian scholars, range in publication dates from the 1950s (one), 60s (four), 70s (five), and 80s (ten), none from the past decade. Although some of the articles may be tough going for high-school students, Anderson's compilation will be a useful addition to the AP class. The book provides a good introduction to scholarly discussions on Horace's work an a point of departure for class discussion.