The Divided City
On Memory and Forgetting in Ancient Athens
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Divided City by Nicole Loraux
Book DescriptionAthens, 403 B.C.E. The bloody oligarchic dictatorship of the Thirty is over, and the democrats have returned to the city victorious. Renouncing vengeance, in an act of willful amnesia, citizens call for -- -if not invent -- -amnesty. They agree to forget the unforgettable, the "past misfortunes," of civil strife or stasis. More precisely, what they agree to deny is that stasis -- -simultaneously partisanship, faction, and sedition -- -is at the heart of their politics.Continuing a criticism of Athenian ideology begun in her pathbreaking study The Invention of Athens, Nicole Loraux argues that this crucial moment of Athenian political history must be interpreted as constitutive of politics and political life and not as a threat to it. Divided from within, the city is formed by that which it refuses. Conflict, the calamity of civil war, is the other, dark side of the beautiful unitary city of Athens. In a brilliant analysis of the Greek word for voting, diaphora, Loraux underscores the conflictual and dynamic motion of democratic life. Voting appears as the process of dividing up, of disagreement -- -in short, of agreeing to divide and choose. Not only does Loraux reconceptualize the definition of ancient Greek democracy, she also allows the contemporary reader to rethink the functioning of modern democracy in its critical moments of internal stasis.
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Book DetailsISBN: 9781890951092
(229mm x 152mm x 25mm)
Imprint: Zone Books
Publisher: Zone Books
Publish Date: 25-Apr-2006
Country of Publication: United States
Books By Author Nicole Loraux
Invention of Athens, Paperback (March 2006)
A revised edition of a groundbreaking work tracing the rhetoric, politics, and ideology of funeral orations in ancient Greece, arguing that they served to celebrate the city of Athens and the Athenian citizen.
Mourning Voice, Hardback (April 2002)
Loraux presents a radical challenge to what has become the dominant view of tragedy in recent years: that tragedy is primarily a civic phenomenon.
Mothers in Mourning, Paperback (January 1998)» View all books by Nicole Loraux
"Nicole Loraux brilliantly elucidates how Athenian politics were 'gendered' in the Classical period. She investigates the Athenian state's interdiction of ritualized mourning by women, in a city where public mourning constituted a vital act of civic...
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Author Biography - Nicole Loraux
Nicole Loraux (1943-2003) was the author of The Divided City, The Children of Athena, The Experiences of Tiresias, Tragic Ways of Killing a Woman, and Mothers in Mourning, among other titles.
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