Sources for the Study of Greek Religion: Corrected Edition

Society of Biblical Lit
Free sample

Since its initial publication in 1979, Sources for the Study of Greek Religion has become an essential classroom resource in the field of classical studies. The Society of Biblical Literature is pleased to present a corrected edition—in a new, attractive, and electronic-friendly format—with hopes that it will inspire a new generation of classicists and religious historians.
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Publisher
Society of Biblical Lit
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Published on
Dec 31, 1979
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Pages
277
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ISBN
9780891303473
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Language
English
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Genres
History / Ancient / Greece
Religion / Biblical Studies / General
Religion / History
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This content is DRM protected.
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"There is something of a paradox about our access to ancient Greek religion. We know too much, and too little. The materials that bear on it far outreach an individual's capacity to assimilate: so many casual allusions in so many literary texts over more than a millennium, so many direct or indirect references in so many inscriptions from so many places in the Greek world, such an overwhelming abundance of physical remains. But genuinely revealing evidence does not often cluster coherently enough to create a vivid sense of the religious realities of a particular time and place. Amid a vast archipelago of scattered islets of information, only a few are of a size to be habitable."—from the Preface

In On Greek Religion, Robert Parker offers a provocative and wide-ranging entrée into the world of ancient Greek religion, focusing especially on the interpretive challenge of studying a religious system that in many ways remains desperately alien from the vantage point of the twenty-first century. One of the world's leading authorities on ancient Greek religion, Parker raises fundamental methodological questions about the study of this vast subject. Given the abundance of evidence we now have about the nature and practice of religion among the ancient Greeks—including literary, historical, and archaeological sources—how can we best exploit that evidence and agree on the central underlying issues? Is it possible to develop a larger, "unified" theoretical framework that allows for coherent discussions among archaeologists, anthropologists, literary scholars, and historians?

In seven thematic chapters, Parker focuses on key themes in Greek religion: the epistemological basis of Greek religion; the relation of ritual to belief; theories of sacrifice; the nature of gods and heroes; the meaning of rituals, festivals, and feasts; and the absence of religious authority. Ranging across the archaic, classical, and Hellenistic periods, he draws on multiple disciplines both within and outside classical studies. He also remains sensitive to varieties of Greek religious experience. Also included are five appendixes in which Parker applies his innovative methodological approach to particular cases, such as the acceptance of new gods and the consultation of oracles. On Greek Religion will stir debate for its bold questioning of disciplinary norms and for offering scholars and students new points of departure for future research.

An introductory guide to the Archaic period in ancient Greece—the people, their society, and their culture. Excerpts from literary and other texts give voice to the interests, concerns, and emotions of the Archaic Greeks themselves.

This book provides a brief but comprehensive introduction to the society and culture of the Archaic period in the Greek world from c. 750 to c. 480 BCE. It focuses on the persistent and often-conflicting themes, topics, and controversies of the Archaic Age (e.g., elite and non-elite, religion and science, tradition and humanism). It seeks to lead the reader to a broader and deeper understanding of the period by placing themes and topics in a mutually supportive contextual network that will underscore their significance.

Archaic Greece: The Age of New Reckonings begins with a chapter on how sources for the period are evaluated and deployed, and goes on to offer a concise yet thorough historical overview of the Archaic period. Subsequent chapters cover polis and politics; war and violence; religion; science; philosophy; art; literature; festivals and games; social forces, values, and behaviors; and gender and sex.

The book:

Offers a novel approach to a very significant period that foregrounds literary evidence and the words voiced by Archaic Greeks, combining scholarship with readability; Conceptualizes Archaic Greek culture and society by focusing substantially on topics that supplement the history of the period; Combines diverse elements of society and culture, including religion, art, literature, games and festivals, gender, sexuality, and politics in order to develop a unique picture of Greece during the Archaic period; Includes a summarizing essay that draws chapters together, emphasizing the implications of their topics and themes.

Archaic Greece: The Age of New Reckonings should appeal to college-level instructors as a book to assign to students enrolled in courses involving Archaic Greece and to others interested in this intriguing and pivotal period in ancient Greece.

In the first authoritative biography of Alexander the Great written for a general audience in a generation, classicist and historian Philip Freeman tells the remarkable life of the great conqueror.

The celebrated Macedonian king has been one of the most enduring figures in history. He was a general of such skill and renown that for two thousand years other great leaders studied his strategy and tactics, from Hannibal to Napoleon, with countless more in between. He flashed across the sky of history like a comet, glowing brightly and burning out quickly: crowned at age nineteen, dead by thirty-two. He established the greatest empire of the ancient world; Greek coins and statues are found as far east as Afghanistan. Our interest in him has never faded.

Alexander was born into the royal family of Macedonia, the kingdom that would soon rule over Greece. Tutored as a boy by Aristotle, Alexander had an inquisitive mind that would serve him well when he faced formidable obstacles during his military campaigns. Shortly after taking command of the army, he launched an invasion of the Persian empire, and continued his conquests as far south as the deserts of Egypt and as far east as the mountains of present-day Pakistan and the plains of India. Alexander spent nearly all his adult life away from his homeland, and he and his men helped spread the Greek language throughout western Asia, where it would become the lingua franca of the ancient world. Within a short time after Alexander’s death in Baghdad, his empire began to fracture. Best known among his successors are the Ptolemies of Egypt, whose empire lasted until Cleopatra.

In his lively and authoritative biography of Alexander, classical scholar and historian Philip Freeman describes Alexander’s astonishing achievements and provides insight into the mercurial character of the great conqueror. Alexander could be petty and magnanimous, cruel and merciful, impulsive and farsighted. Above all, he was ferociously, intensely competitive and could not tolerate losing—which he rarely did. As Freeman explains, without Alexander, the influence of Greece on the ancient world would surely not have been as great as it was, even if his motivation was not to spread Greek culture for beneficial purposes but instead to unify his empire. Only a handful of people have influenced history as Alexander did, which is why he continues to fascinate us.
Thucydides called his account of two decades of war between Athens and Sparta “a possssion for all time,” and indeed it is the first and still most famous work in the Western historical tradition. Considered essential reading for generals, statesmen, and liberally educated citizens for more than 2,000 years, The Peloponnesian War is a mine of military, moral, political, and philosophical wisdom.

Thucydides called his account of two decades of war between Athens and Sparta “a possssion for all time,” and indeed it is the first and still most famous work in the Western historical tradition. Considered essential reading for generals, statesmen, and liberally educated citizens for more than 2,000 years, The Peloponnesian War is a mine of military, moral, political, and philosophical wisdom.

However, this classic book has long presented obstacles to the uninitiated reader. Robert Strassler's new edition removes these obstacles by providing a new coherence to the narrative overall, and by effectively reconstructing the lost cultural context that Thucydides shared with his original audience. Based on the venerable Richard Crawley translation, updated and revised for modern readers. The Landmark Thucydides includes a vast array of superbly designed and presented maps, brief informative appendices by outstanding classical scholars on subjects of special relevance to the text, explanatory marginal notes on each page, an index of unprecedented subtlety, and numerous other useful features.

In any list of the Great Books of Western Civilization, The Peloponnesian War stands near the top. This authoritative new edition will ensure that its greatness is appreciated by future generations.
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