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The Bad Citizen in Classical Athens

The Bad Citizen in Classical Athens

Paperback

By (author) Matthew R. Christ

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  • Publisher: CAMBRIDGE UNIVERSITY PRESS
  • Format: Paperback | 262 pages
  • Dimensions: 152mm x 224mm x 14mm | 358g
  • Publication date: 1 May 2008
  • Publication City/Country: Cambridge
  • ISBN 10: 0521730341
  • ISBN 13: 9780521730341
  • Edition statement: Reprint
  • Sales rank: 779,329

Product description

This book provides a fresh perspective on Athenian democracy by exploring bad citizenship, both as a reality and an idea, in classical Athens, from the late sixth century down to 322. If called upon, Athenian citizens were expected to support their city through military service and financial outlay. These obligations were fundamental to Athenian understandings of citizenship and it was essential to the city's well-being that citizens fulfill them. The ancient sources, however, are full of allegations that individuals have avoided these duties or performed them deficiently. Claims of draft evasion, cowardice on the battlefield, and avoidance of liturgies and the war tax are common. By examining the nature and scope of bad citizenship in Athens and the city's responses - institutional and ideological - to the phenomenon, this study aims to illuminate the relationship between citizen and city under the Athenian democracy, and more broadly, the tension between private interests and public authority in human societies.

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Author information

Matthew R. Christ is Professor of Classical Studies at Indiana University. He is the author of The Litigious Athenian.

Review quote

'... this is an excellent book that goes a long way towards creating a realistic portrait of the ancient Athenians.' Bryn Mawr Classical Review 'This book is a noteworthy contribution, both substantively and methodologically, to the study of democratic Athens.' POLIS: The Journal for the Society of Greek Political Thought '... the book displays an admirable methodological unity, it is well written in clear and elegant prose, thoroughly researched, and a pleasure to read.' Journal of Hellenic Studies '... The Bad Citizen in Classical Athens is a worthwhile introduction for anyone interested in ancient legislation, taxation and the clashes between ideals and reality in the upper echelons of society.' Arctos

Table of contents

Introduction: The other Athenians; 1. The self-interested citizen; 2. The reluctant conscript; 3. The cowardly hoplite; 4. The artful tax dodger.