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Sport in the Ancient World from A to Z 0th Edition

1 customer review
ISBN-13: 978-0415248815
ISBN-10: 0415248817
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Editorial Reviews


'A good read ... due, at least in part, to G's writing style, which keeps the pages turning ... [a] wonderful addition to our resources.' - The Classical Review

About the Author

Mark Golden is Professor of Classics at the University of Winnipeg. His previous books include Sport and Society in Ancient Greece (1998) and Children and Childhood in Classical Athens (1990).


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Product Details

  • Series: The Ancient World from A to Z
  • Hardcover: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Routledge (November 12, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0415248817
  • ISBN-13: 978-0415248815
  • Product Dimensions: 0.8 x 6.2 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,311,697 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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For the sake of transparency, I must disclose that the picture of a gladiator on the book's cover turned me off. The book is about sports in the ancient world. I have argued on several occasions that gladiator shows should not be classified as sport.
I can only guess that it was not the author but the publisher who due to the ineffable draw and mystic of gladiators selected the cover picture.
The book's cover is the first thing that one sees. After purchasing the book, I read the introduction. Do not skip it; the intro contains several enlightening points. A question in the introduction left me speechless, so to speak. The author asks if gladiatorial combats can be, and I quote "considered sport at all".
That question was a pleasant surprise. I have yet to find anyone critically examining the context of gladiatorial shows. They are blindly placed under the heading of sport by publications about entertainment and life in ancient Rome. No other book about sport in the antiquity - that I have read, mind you - deals with the issue or offers any reflections, analysis or thought, you name it, on the topic. Nikephoros, the highly touted journal for sports and culture in antiquity, has never raised the issue.

The author goes on by explaining that he chose to include gladiatorial combats in the book because a) they were a real competition with unpredictable results, b) the combatants followed conventions and rules, c) the winners received significant rewards and, finally, d) in the ....
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