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Philosophy and Power in the Graeco-Roman World: Essays in Honour of Miriam Griffin 1st Edition

5 out of 5 stars 1 customer review
ISBN-13: 978-0198299905
ISBN-10: 0198299907
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Editorial Reviews


"Welcome indexes of ancient and modern names and a general index conclude the volume."--Religious Studies Review

"The reader will learn from every one of [the essays] and take comfort from the assurance that ancient philosophy and history still invite us to wrestle with the eternal questions of politics and ethics. The editors deserve our praise."--New England Classical Journal

About the Author

Gillian Clark is Professor of Ancient History, University of Bristol Tessa Rajak is Reader in Classics, University of Reading

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 366 pages
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press; 1 edition (October 3, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0198299907
  • ISBN-13: 978-0198299905
  • Product Dimensions: 8.6 x 1 x 5.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,600,874 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Format: Hardcover
Scholarly, but can be read by anyone with an interest in the ancient world. These essays cover a broad range of topics, from whether Socrates agreed to obey the laws in Athens, to the creation of orthodoxy in Neoplatonism.

Perhaps the most interesting is Beagon's essay on Sergius Silvus, whose life is only known to us through Pliny. Pliny recounts the disasters that befell him. He lost his hand in one campaign, was twice held captive by Hannibal, and was wounded in subsequent battles so that he was crippled in both hands and feet. Still he continued to fight.

Pliny viewed him as a hero. He overcame Fortune, which was "a hostile force, an enemy" (p 122) in his life. Yet "the war wounded were not necessarily accorded much sympathy in Greek and Roman society...where a tendency to equate beauty and virtue was ingrained the popular consciousness" (p 123). Character was believed to be revealed by many aspects of a person's face and figure. Beagon concludes that Pliny's praise of Sergius was therefore unique.

Levick investigates the connection between women and philosophy, and finds most philosophers emphasized the connnection between "turning women into first-rate housekeepers" (p 149). Her conclusion is that "ancient philosophy and philosophers failed women. With the exception of Cynicism, it challenged little about ancient society but rather rationialized and justified existing stratifications (p 151). Philosophy had no ethics, and little metaphics. This changed with Christinaity.

Bowersock emphasizes the "emergence of certain phlosophers as performance artists" (p 163). Wardle studies the genesis of Roman terminology for deified emperors.
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