The Ancient Greeks: An Introduction

The Ancient Greeks: An Introduction

Book rating: 01 Paperback

By (author) Stephanie Lynn Budin

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  • Publisher: Oxford University Press Inc
  • Format: Paperback | 496 pages
  • Dimensions: 152mm x 231mm x 25mm | 658g
  • Publication date: 26 March 2009
  • Publication City/Country: New York
  • ISBN 10: 0195379845
  • ISBN 13: 9780195379846
  • Illustrations note: numerous halftone and line illustrations
  • Sales rank: 1,104,272

Product description

This accessible introduction surveys the land and peoples who gave us the Labyrinth, the Acropolis, the Iliad and Odyssey, Herodotus and Thucydides, Sappho and Sophocles, Aphrodite and Aristotle, and so much more. Using the full range of resources of art history, archaeology, and philology, this book details the familiar-mythic heroes and heroines, famous philosophers and poets, as well as classical art and architecture-and introduces the less-well-known aspects of ancient Greece, notably the civilizations of the Bronze and Dark Ages and even the earliest form of written Greek-Linear B. In addition, Stephanie Lynn Budin offers a full history of how the study of classical Greece has evolved from ancient times through the Middle Ages and the Renaissance to the present day. She covers ongoing questions and new directions in Greek studies, including Minoan religion, the role of women in early Greek cultures, the historical accuracy of Homer and Herodotus, and the role of Greece amongst its non-Greek neighbors. The Ancient Greeks includes a rich collection of illustrations, drawings, maps, and photographs, including detailed renderings of Knossos, the evolution of Greek sculpture and pottery, and even a section on ancient weaponry. The result is a superb companion for both newcomers and long-time Hellenophiles, revealing not only what we know about ancient Greece but how we know it and how these cultures continue to influence us.

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Author information

Stephanie Lynn Budin, Ph.D., is a professional writer specializing in ancient History, Ancient Greece, and the Near East. She is the author of The Myth of Sacred Prostitution in Antiquity and The Origin of Aphrodite.

Customer reviews

By GRavity 08 Nov 2009 1

The Ancient Greeks: New Perspectives by Stephanie Lynn Budin.

I borrowed (thank God I didn't pay for it!) and read a copy of this book.
I didn't know the expression "New Perspectives" was a code for "Vardaskan Propaganda".

This letter is addressed to the author of this deplorable book.

I was very disappointed by your work. You seem to be extremely ignorant of the Ancient Greek culture and history. I would even go as far as to call you the "Alan Dershowitz" of Greek history. It's sad that people like you and Dershowitz can "write" and publish books. Neither of you has the knowledge to teach or write books; to educate and/or inform people.

I present here two examples of your ignorance and utter impotence to discuss Ancient Greek history.

I. You mention in your book that :
The Greeks had always thought of the Macedonians as northern barbarians
(as opposed to the Persians, who were eastern barbarians). Actually, to the Athenians, the Macedonians were worse than barbarians if we are to believe Demosthenes, who claimed that Philip was “Not only not a Greek nor related to the Greeks, but not even a barbarian from a land worth mentioning. No! He is a pestilence from Macedonia, a region where you cannot even buy a slave worth his salt!” (Orations 9.31).
...
To begin with, you fail to specify the meaning of the word "barbarian". I must assume you are not aware that the word did not always have an ethnic/racial meaning. Do some -serious- research and you will find out that Athenians called Spartans and Corinthians "barbarians" as well. To call someone barbarian was more an insult than a derogatory label with an ethnic/racial connotation.
Next, you fail to place Demosthenes' speech into the actual historical context it occurred. When did the speech take place, where, and why? Obviously you do not have a clue. You offer no insight or detail in regards to Demosthenes' speech.
Finally, Greece as a distinct and unified nation (Ethnos) did not exist before 1832 A.D. Ancient Greece was divided into city-states that had their own army and government; so even if some Athenians called the Macedonians barbarians that did not mean that other city-sates shared the same view. So, to say that all Greeks called Macedonians barbarians is simply a gross generalization.

II. To make things worse you state that :
Although Alexander himself was not Greek, and his father
had conquered Greece by force, Macedonians liked to think of themselves
as Greek—hence Alexander’s concern with how Greece had been treated by
others.
...
Sparta conquered Athens by force, with the help of the Persian Empire! Does that prove that Spartans were not Greeks? Your "logic" is fundamentally flawed.
Once again your ignorance is obvious. It is well known that Macedonians and Spartans were both descendants of Dorians.
Are the names Alexander and Phillip Greek or not? Do you know of a lot of kings that had foreign names? How many Persian Kings had Greek names? How come there is not even one document where the Macedonians express/state their disappointment or hate for Greece (Greece being, according to you, a hostile country that despised them so much)?
Macedonians spoke Greek, their mythology, religion, philosophy, and culture were Greek and they were blood brothers with the Spartans, yet you somehow decided that they were not Greek. Why? Obviously because Demosthenes spoke against Philip!

Please stop writing your tripe and focus on something you can actually do - maybe gardening or cooking. You are a disgrace to all scholars that have studied and written about Ancient Greece and especially the one and only Greek Macedonia.

www.greece.org/Themis/Macedonia/index.htm

www.historyofmacedonia.wordpress.com

Table of contents

Series Editor's Preface ; Preface and Acknowledgments ; PART 1: INTRODUCTION ; 1. Introduction ; What Did the Greeks Contribute to Modern Society? ; PART 2: GREEK CIVILIZATION ; 2. Location of Greek Civilization and Environmental Setting ; The Greek Mainland ; Crete ; Cyclades ; Asia Minor's West Coast ; Cyprus ; 3. Historical and Chronological Setting ; The History of Greek Studies ; Sources for the Study of Greek History ; Chronology ; 4. Origins, Growth, and Decline of Greek Civilization ; Crete ; The Mainland ; The Dark Age ; The Eighth-Century Renaissance and the Archaic Age ; The Classical Period-From the Persian Invasions to the Death of Alexander ; The Rise and Fall of the ; 5. Hellenistic Kingdoms: 323-30 B.C.E. ; Palace Economics of the Aegean Bronze Age ; Trade in the Late Bronze Age ; The Dark Age ; The Early Emporia ; Archaic and Classical Greece ; 6. Social Organization and Social Structure ; Divisions ; Unions ; Groups ; 7. Politics ; Minoan Crete: Kings? Queens? Priestesses? Priests? ; The Dark Age and "Epic" Kingship ; The Archaic Age: Synoecism, Aristocracy, and Tyranny ; Forms of Rule in the Classical Period: Oligarchy and Democracy ; Politics beyond the Polis ; Alexander and the Hellenistic ; Monarchies ; Ancient Greek Law ; 8. Religion and Ideology ; Minoan Religion ; Mycenaean Religion ; Greek Religion in the Historical Periods ; 9. Material Culture ; Architecture ; Sculpture ; Pottery ; Clothing ; Arms and Armor ; The Art of Death ; 10. Intellectual Accomplishments ; Literature ; Science ; Philosophy ; PART 3: CURRENT ASSESSMENTS ; 11. Major Controversies and Future Directions in the Study of Greek Civilization ; Excavation ; Linear A ; Minoan Deities ; The Dark Age ; Non-Athenian Culture ; Foreign Relations ; Women in Ancient Greece ; Glossary ; Chronology ; Resources for Further Study ; Index ; About the Author