Greeks and Barbarians
By (author) Thomas Harrison
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Greeks and Barbarians by Thomas Harrison
Book DescriptionHow did the Greeks view foreign peoples? This book considers what the Greeks thought of foreigners and their religions, cultures and politics, and what these beliefs and opinions reveal about the Greeks. The Greeks were occasionally intrigued by the customs and religions of the many different peoples with whom they came into contact; more often they were disdainful or dismissive, tending to regard non-Greeks as at best inferior, and at worst as candidates for conquest and enslavement. Facing up to this less attractive aspect of the classical tradition is vital, Thomas Harrison argues, to seeing both what the ancient world was really like and the full nature of its legacy in the modern. In this book he brings together outstanding European and American scholarship to show the difference and complexity of Greek representations of foreign peoples -- or barbarians, as the Greeks called them -- and how these representations changed over time. The book looks first at the main sources: the Histories of Herodotus, Greek tragedy, and Athenian art. Part II examines how the Greeks distinguished themselves from barbarians through myth, language and religion. Part III considers Greek representations of two different barbarian peoples -- the allegedly decadent and effeminate Persians, and the Egyptians, proverbial for their religious wisdom. In part IV three chapters trace the development of the Greek--barbarian antithesis in later history: in nineteenth-century scholarship, in Byzantine and modern Greece, and in western intellectual history. Of the twelve chapters six are published in English for the first time. The editor has provided an extensive general introduction, as well as introductions to the parts. The book contains two maps, a guide to further reading and an intellectual chronology. All passages of ancient languages are translated, and difficult terms are explained.
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Book DetailsISBN: 9780748612703
(234mm x 156mm x 24mm)
Imprint: Edinburgh University Press
Publisher: Edinburgh University Press
Publish Date: 25-Oct-2001
Country of Publication: United Kingdom
Books By Author Thomas Harrison
Polybius and His World, Hardback (March 2013)
Polybius and his World honours F. W. Walbank's achievement by bringing together a number of leading scholars in the fields of Hellenistic historiography and history.
Greek Religion, Paperback (February 2011)
Provides an introduction to Ancient Greek religion, looking at their beliefs: in divine retribution, for example, divination, the afterlife and predestination. This book examines not only what the Greeks believed but also how they believed it. It addresses a number of ideas central to the modern understanding of Greek religion.
Leisured Resistance, Paperback (February 2011)
Examines the varied ways in which cultured Roman aristocrats, of very different periods, used their country estates as retreats in which to compose literature and to escape from politics, while others adapted that same tradition of otium ('cultured leisure') to present radical and competing visions of society and literature alike.
Writing Ancient Persia, Paperback (January 2011)» View all books by Thomas Harrison
This essay is a critique of this new Achaemenid historiography, concentrating on the difficulties of using Greek sources for the writing of Persian history.
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Author Biography - Thomas Harrison
Thomas Harrison is Professor of Classics and Ancient History at the University of Liverpool.
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