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Samuel Anderson
Samuel Anderson

Women In Ancient Greece: A Sourcebook


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_OC_InitNavbar("child_node":["title":"My library","url":" =114584440181414684107\u0026source=gbs_lp_bookshelf_list","id":"my_library","collapsed":true,"title":"My History","url":"","id":"my_history","collapsed":true,"title":"Books on Google Play","url":" ","id":"ebookstore","collapsed":true],"highlighted_node_id":"");Women in Ancient Greece: A SourcebookBonnie MacLachlanA&C Black, May 31, 2012 - History - 232 pages 0 ReviewsReviews aren't verified, but Google checks for and removes fake content when it's identifiedThe study of women in the ancient Mediterranean world is a topic of growing interest among classicists and ancient historians, and also students of history, sociology and women's studies. This volume is an essential resource supplying a compilation of source material in translation, with suggestions for further reading, a general bibliography, and an index of ancient authors and works. Texts come from literary, rhetorical, philosophical and legal sources, as well as papyri and inscriptions, and each text will be placed into the cultural mosaic to which it belongs. Ranging geographically from the Greek mainland and the communities along the eastern shores of the Mediterranean, to Egypt and the Greek West (modern day southern Italy and Sicily), the volume follows a clear chronological structure. Beginning in the eighth century BCE the coverage continues through Archaic and Classical Athens concluding with the Hellenistic era.




Women in Ancient Greece: A Sourcebook



The study of women in the ancient Mediterranean world is a topic of growing interest among classicists and ancient historians, and also students of history, sociology and women's studies. This volume is an essential resource supplying a compilation of source material in translation, with suggestions for further reading, a general bibliography, and an index of ancient authors and works. Texts come from literary, rhetorical, philosophical and legal sources, as well as papyri and inscriptions, and each text will be placed into the cultural mosaic to which it belongs. Ranging geographically from the Greek mainland and the communities along the eastern shores of the Mediterranean, to Egypt and the Greek West (modern day southern Italy and Sicily), the volume follows a clear chronological structure. Beginning in the eighth century BCE the coverage continues through Archaic and Classical Athens concluding with the Hellenistic era.


Women in the ancient Greek world had few rights in comparison to male citizens. Unable to vote, own land, or inherit, a woman's place was in the home and her purpose in life was the rearing of children. That is a general description and when considering Greek women one should remember our sources are incomplete and not always unbiased.


As in other ancient male-dominated literature, women are often cast as troublemakers, from jealous Hera to Aphrodite employing her charms to make men lose their wits. Myths and literature abound with female characters trying their best to derail the plans of male heroes, from the supreme witch Medea to the deadly, if lovely, Sirens. They can also be represented as ruled only by wild passion and ecstatic emotion such as the Maenads. In contrast, the ideal chaste woman loyal to her absent husband is epitomised by Penelope in Homer's Odyssey. The Muses are another positive representation, celebrated not only for their physical beauty but also their wide-ranging skills in the arts. Whether these fictional characters had any bearing on the role of women in real life is an open question, as is the more intriguing one of what did Greek women themselves think of such male-created role-models? Perhaps we will never know.


Course goals: In this course we shall read and discuss ancient sources on religion, philosophy, medicine and law along with modern scholarly analyses of ancient society to explore the roles of women in ancient Greek and Roman society. Readings are chosen and discussions are structured with the aim of developing three types of awareness:


This sourcebook includes a rich and accessible selection of Roman original sources in translation ranging from the Regal Period through Republican and Imperial Rome to the late Empire and the coming of Christianity. From Roman goddesses to mortal women, imperial women to slaves and prostitutes, the volume brings new perspectives to the study of Roman women's lives.


The Peplos Korē portrays a girl measuring about 117 cm high, is made of white marble and is one of the most well known examples of women in ancient Greece. The statue was excavated at the Athenian Acropolis. The statue now resides at the Acropolis Museum in Athens, Greece. Although it is now white marble, at the time of its production, it was most likely painted in vibrant colors.


Project descriptionThe women of ancient Greece were seen as second-class citizens and a hindrance to the democracy. The women of ancient Greece were regarded mostly as property and a way to bring legitimate heirs to their country and were given few rights. Women were often forced into seclusion and had no rights of their own. A woman was always under the guardianship of on of her male relatives passing from her father to husband, to son and so on. They were forced into seclusion and hidden from view, lest they be a distraction and a cause of tension between males. Women were seen as little more than something that would produce legitimate male citizens for Athens. By producing citizens, women were therefore upholding the democracy. Women had little, if any rights, were never considered citizens and were kept hidden away in the household to keep them from causing any drama between two men. The vast majority of women in ancient Greek society were treated as second-class citizens and were forced to be subservient for the entirety of their lives.


"I wouldn't have liked living in ancient times-I couldn't have done the things I have done," says classical scholar Mary Lefkowitz. "But I think ancient women did more things than we imagine they did. They were appreciated when they did things well."


Lefkowitz has written three books on the role of women in ancient societies: Heroines and Hysterics, Women in Greek Myth, and Women's Life in Greece and Rome, which she coedited with Maureen B. Fant and which is considered the standard sourcebook in the field.


Wounded Amazon In ancient Greece, some have argued, women were generally regarded as irrational, sex-obsessed and prone to hysteria. Women had very few rights; they often were not allowed to leave the house and, inside their houses, they were relegated to rooms in the back of the house near the slave quarters. One classics professor told National Geographic: "The Greek polis was something of a men's club. Women tended to stay at home and do the household chores. They went out chiefly for ceremonies, festivals, and such duties as drawing waters. In myth, trysts often took place at wells. Going there was one way a woman got out of the house."


Some argue that the view of women in ancient Greece as being demure and housebound is not correct. There were some places where women were held in higher respect. "There was a strong tradition of matriarchy in Lokroi," one scholar told National Geographic. "The aristocrats, for instance, descended from the mother's side. Also, the cults of two Goddesses, Persephone and Aphrodite, were powerful here."


According to the Canadian Museum of History: In comparison with other civilizations in the ancient world, Greek women in general did not enjoy high status, rank and privilege. Even so enlightened a man as Pericles suggested in a major public speech that the more inconspicuous women were, the better it was for everyone. Sparta, which history clearly ranks as the cultural inferior of Athens on almost every scale, seems to have had a superior record in its treatment of women. And it wasn't outstanding. [Source: Canadian Museum of History historymuseum.ca ]


The veiling of women was common practice among women in ancient Greece, Rome and Byzantium. The Muslim custom of veiling and segregating women is believed to have its origins in customs that were common place in ancient Greece.


However, since the 1970s, historians have been unpacking evidence about the lives of real ancient women. After all, women living in patriarchal societies have always found ways to exercise power. Wealthy women spent money on the tools that outwardly reinforced their upper-class status: jewelry, makeup, and expensive clothing. Natural beauty transcended rank and could help women to attract rich suitors, buy gifts, or wield influence over male lovers. Furthermore, upper-class women often had powerful male relatives they could potentially manipulate to their advantage.


When we examine why inequality existed and how frequently it occurred, we must also explain it in relation to ancient historical and social contexts, rather than our own present-day assumptions.* That said, there is little doubt that Greek and Roman women were born into societies that heavily privileged males over females, and the resulting imbalance has led to a dearth of significant non-academic writing about the women of the time.


The central source problems, and the strategies developed to overcome them, underpin the large amount of work on ancient women produced since the 1980s. First, every type of evidence has had to be reexamined in order to discover what it can contribute. This has led many scholars to concentrate on very small areas of specialism, leaving the work of synthesis to the reader of the collections of essays in which much recent work has been published. Second, the indirect nature of much of the evidence has made necessary a theoretically sophisticated approach, open to methods developed in cognate disciplines.


An interdisciplinary resource for anyone interested in patterns of gender around the ancient Mediterranean and as a forum for collaboration among instructors who teach courses about women and gender in the ancient world. Includes course materials, the beginnings of a systematic and searchable bibliography, and links to many on-line resources, including articles, book reviews, databases, and images. 041b061a72


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