Ritualised Friendship and the Greek City

Ritualised Friendship and the Greek City

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In this book, Gabriel Herman offers a new interpretation of Greek xenia, a term traditionally rendered as 'guest-friendship'. Drawing on contemporary literary sources and inscriptions as well as anthropology, sociology, and comparative evidence from other times, he shows that xenia was a bond of fictitious kinship akin to godparenthood, rather than a tie of hospitality or ordinary 'friendship'. Starting off from this proposition, he develops a dynamic model of the formation of elite relationships and values. He explores the concepts of obligation and loyalty, gift and bribe, treason and patriotism, and places the Greek city within a new context of power relations. This book, which assumes no knowledge of Greek, will be of interest to students and teachers of ancient history and classics. It will also appeal to social and political scientists.show more

Product details

  • Paperback | 228 pages
  • 148 x 228 x 12mm | 340.19g
  • Cambridge, United Kingdom
  • English
  • Revised ed.
  • 0521522102
  • 9780521522106
  • 1,946,213

Table of contents

List of tables; List of figures; Preface; Abbreviations; 1. Introduction; 2. Ritualised friendship; 3. Encounter and initiation; 4. The circulation of resources; 5. Obligations: heroic and civic; Conclusion; Appendixes; Bibliography; Indexes.show more