Ancient Greece: A Political, Social, and Cultural History

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9780195097436: Ancient Greece: A Political, Social, and Cultural History
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Written by four leading authorities on the classical world, Ancient Greece: A Political, Social, and Cultural History introduces students to the history and civilization of ancient Greece in all its complexity and variety. The most comprehensive and balanced history of ancient Greece that covers the entire period from the Bronze Age through the Hellenistic Era, it integrates the most recent research in archaeology, comparative anthropology, and social history with a traditional yet lively narrative of political, military, and diplomatic history. The authors show how the early Greeks borrowed from their neighbors but eventually developed a distinctive culture all their own, one that was marked by astonishing creativity, versatility, and resilience. The book goes on to trace the complex and surprising evolution of Greek civilization to its eventual dissolution as it merged with a variety of other cultures. Using physical evidence from archaeology, the written testimony of literary texts and inscriptions, and anthropological models based on comparative studies, the authors provide an account of the Greek world that is thoughtful and sophisticated yet accessible to students and general readers with little or no knowledge of Greece.
Featuring 19 maps, more than 80 photographs, and numerous selections that highlight a variety of primary source material, Ancient Greece is an indispensable text for courses in ancient Greek history.

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About the Author:

Sarah B. Pomeroy is at City University of New York Graduate Center. Stanley M. Burstein is at California State University.

From Kirkus Reviews:

From Pomeroy (Classics/Hunter Coll.), Stanley M. Burstein (History/Calif. State U niv., Los Angeles), Walter Donlan (Classics/Univ. of Calif., Irvine), and Jennifer Tolbert Roberts (Classics/City Coll. of New York), a comprehensive narrative history that emphasizes the ``astonishing creativity, versatility, and resilience'' of the culture shaped by the ancient Greeks. A poor, backward people occupying barely cultivable land on the periphery of the Mediterranean world, the Bronze Age Hellenes or Greeks (c. 30001150 b.c.) seem in retrospect an unlikely bet to become the progenitors of a great world civilization. While Bronze Age Greece eventually developed a distinctive culture and power base at Mycenae (c. 16001100 b.c. ), it derived most of its industrial skills from its more highly developed neighbors around the Mediterranean basin. And beginning around 1150 b.c., the authors speculate, a mysterious wave of invaders from the north wiped out the brilliant Mycenaean civilization, reducing Greek society to a culturally primitive ``dark age'' until around 750 b.c. The authors' account treats aspects of Greek life for which primary sources are sparsethe role of women, for instancebut it doesnt neglect the amazing political, artistic, architectural, philosophical, and literary achievements of classical Athens and other cities. The authors detail the development of Athens and Sparta, the creative tensions between them that helped defend Greece from Persian invasion, the ruinous wars that vitiated the Greek polis or city-state, and the extensive colonization (by the city-states) and conquest (by Alexander the Great) that spread Greek civilization from modem France to what is now Pakistan. While the Hellenistic kingdoms that resulted from the Alexandrian conquest were brutally absorbed into the Roman super-state, the cultural legacy of Greece remained pervasively influential in the Roman world and exerted a profound effect on the rise of Christianity. An accessible and well-balanced introduction to the culture and history of ancient Greece, useful for both student and general reader. -- Copyright ©1998, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.

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Other Popular Editions of the Same Title

9780195097429: Ancient Greece: A Political, Social, and Cultural History

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ISBN 10:  0195097424 ISBN 13:  9780195097429
Publisher: Oxford University Press, 1998
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9780195308006: Ancient Greece: A Political, Social and Cultural History, 2nd Edition

Oxford..., 2007
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