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University of Toronto St. George
Dimitri Nakassis

“Hellenic Identity” “Persia gave the Greeks their identity or the means for recognizing it” Aeschylus (performing play 8 years after the defeat,, to the Greeks), The Persians “We prostrate ourselves, and must all address her with words of salutation”: either kiss on the mouth, the cheek or fall down and does obeisance  to Greeks this is weird behaviour, becomes weird when Alexander conquers the empire Atossa’s dream (176-99). Two women, one Persian, one Doric  one women struggled and the other didn’t , xerxes is trying to yoke the two empires together, Asia and Greece, Persia submissive and Greek women fights Atossa  if the son succeeds he gets admiration, if not he is not accountable to the community  foreign concept to the Greeks, all the leaders are accountable to the community, contrary to regular Greek way of thinking, in which honor is zero sum Xerxes at Salamis  not acting in an honorable way, runs away, acts like a woman in mourning, better to die standing like a man. Gender thing isn’t 100% here, but in other parts its clear that its not just Persians/Greeks, its also females/males The chorus on the effects  very athenina, greek idea that free speech is associated with greek way of life/political life (not entirely true, but in theory it is), extreme persian monarchy is associated with not speaking clearly, mentioned over and over again in Herodutus, if someone speaks to the king he is ignored/threatens death, stories probably not true but its how the Greeks think about it. The destruction of Persian power = free speech. A lot of this negativity is not directed at Perisans in general, but mostly at Xerxes. Xerxes thinks he’s at the rank of/better than the gods -> in Greek thought if you do this you are dead, the god smites you Herodutus on Greekness: “there is the matter of Greekness (Hellenikon): that is, our common blood, common tongue, common cult places and sacrifices and similar customs…” (blood, language, religious practice)  something that already exists before the Persian wars but becomes much more clear during them, sees the us versus them Egypt  everything is done backwards, distorted mirror for Greece Later Greek accuse Herodotus of being a philobarbaros, a barbarian lover, because he doesn’t say that everything they do everything wrong  example the Egyptian calendar.  you do get a cultural chauvinism, appreciation there too, some things they do better than us, Greeks are interested in what other cultures are doing. Thought put into the differences  they’re trying to explain how Greeks won the Persian wars. Maybe because Greek cities don’t have giant propaganda machines Hippocratic Airs, waters, Places : Asia differs very much from Europe because everything is more beautiful, differences have to do with climate Manly courage, endurance of suffereing, laborious enterprise and high sirit could not be produced in a state of things either among the native inhabitants  if you’re from a mild climate, you don’t need to labour, you don’t need to endure suffering. A fertile land produces poor characeritis, laziness, stupidity, indolence, Harrsh land produces good characteristics, strong, opinionated, fierce, smart The “Pentakontaetia” (479-432 BC) Sources: Herodotus, Thucydides (b. 460, d 390, strategos mid-420s), Aristotle: Constitution of the Athenians (interesting in understanding the growth of Athenian democracy) Main historical trend is how the Delian League transforms into the Athenian empire The siege of Sestos, 479 BC. Pelopenise go home, Athens + Ionians stay and take Sestos, becomes an important area for the Greek military history Athenian fortifications, 479-8 BC (Sparta is not fortified because they didn’t need it) Sparta was a little shocked at Athens’ courage, and urged Athens to give up. Athenians fortify anyways. Central wall built later, but protects Athenian access to the sea We are told that the Spartans showed no displeasure towa
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