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A Companion to Archaic Greece by Kurt A. Raaflaub, Hans van Wees

By Kurt A. Raaflaub, Hans van Wees

A scientific survey of archaic Greek society and tradition which introduces the reader to quite a lot of new techniques to the period.

  • The first finished and available survey of advancements within the examine of archaic Greece
  • Places Greek society of c.750-480 BCE in its chronological and geographical context
  • Gives equivalent emphasis to proven issues comparable to tyranny and political reform and more moderen topics like gender and ethnicity
  • Combines bills of historic advancements with local surveys of archaeological facts and in-depth remedies of chosen themes
  • Explores the impression of jap and different non-Greek cultures within the improvement of Greece
  • Uses archaeological and literary proof to reconstruct vast styles of social and cultural development

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E. post-480) Greece allows its history to be presented thus, for at a minimum Sparta, Athens, Thebes, Syracuse, Asia Minor, and Macedonia each need focused attention. Pre-Classical Greece is even more polycentric: each island, each micro-state, each sanctuary presents a certain number of pieces of information – but they turn out to be pieces from a huge number of different jigsaws. Either, then, the historian presents a set of simultaneous micro-narratives, at the cost of obscuring links and similarities, or s/he groups them in various ways, at the cost of occluding differences, or s/he identifies recurrent themes and patterns of behavior, at the cost of losing the thread of processes which unfold and intersect through time.

Qxd 25/02/2009 4 02:26PM Page 4 John K. Davies identifying and testing the criteria which underlie it. 3 The traps set by terminology do not end there. 4 “Archaeology” in the sense of “ancient history” is much older, the first citation being of 1607, but the semantic shift towards its present-day meaning was also an early nineteenth-century affair (the two relevant pages of the OED are most instructive for intellectual history). But in fact Greece, like all Mediterranean countries, has a long and intricate human “pre-history,” which stretches back at least to ca.

2 The comparison, amounting to an interpretative analysis worked out in detail, was made in different ways a century ago by Meyer and Beloch, and was explicit in Ure 1922. Cf. also Burn 1965: 35 ff. 3 Heuss 1946; 1981; I. Morris 1997c. 4 Further detail in Most 1989. 5 See instead Snodgrass 1971 (22000), Desborough 1972, Musti et al. 1991, and Mazarakis Ainian 1997. 6 Earlier surveys include von Pöhlmann 1902; Lenschau 1905; Bengtson 1950: 1–16; Christ 1972; Starr 1987: 1–17; Gehrke 1995b (on ancient history in general); Ampolo 1996; Ampolo 1997; Raaflaub 1997a; Davies 2000a; Davies 2002.

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