The Greek city-state or polis is the earliest advanced form of social organization in the western world; it was the dominant political structure in the Mediterranean area from the eighth until the late fourth century BC, when it was transformed into a basis for world civilization by the conquests of Alexander the Great. The experience of the polis is the starting-point for western political thought. Fourteen new essays by leading scholars from Britain, Denmark, France, Italy, and North America present leading aspects of this phenomenon. The Greek city is placed in the general context of Mediterranean history and its impact on the urbanization of Italy is assessed. Other chapters consider the geography of the polis and the relationship between city and countryside, its political and religious institutions, and the distinction between public and private spheres. The first essay seeks to define then uniqueness of the phenomenon of the polis, and the last assesses the reasons for its decline. The book is written for the general reader and the student of social sciences as much as for professional historians of the ancient world.
It presents a variety of contemporary approaches to the phenomenon of the polis.
`There is ... much to enjoy in these articles ... a wealth of approaches to the ancient city ... worth reading.'
Mnemosyne, Vol XLVI, Fasc 3 (1993)
` the reader, whilst not necessarily agreeing with the ideas expressed in the individual papers, will find the contributons controversial and stimulating.'
E.J.Owens, The Classical Review.
`an excellent sample of the ways in which people are studying the Greek world.'
Greece and Rome
`The reader, whilst not necessarily agreeing with the ideas expressed in the individual papers, will find the contributions controversial and stimulating'.
E.J. Owens, The Classical Review, vol XLI, no 2, 1991.
Series: Clarendon Paperbacks
Number Of Pages: 400
Published: 3rd October 1991
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 21.57 x 13.97
Weight (kg): 0.55