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Thucydides' Funeral Oration

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University of Toronto St. George
Victoria Wohl

Reading Notes Thucydides Pericles Funeral Oration 1a. What purpose(s) is Pericles trying to achieve with this speech? What I want to do is, in the first place, to discuss the spirit in which we faced our trials and also our constitution and the way of life which has made us great. 1b. Who is in his audience? The people of Athens 2a. What are the ideal qualities of the Athenian citizen, as Pericles describes him? We give obedience to those whom we put in positions of authority, and we obey the laws themselves, especially those which are for the protection of the oppressed, and those unwritten laws which it is an acknowledged shame to break. 2b. How does he display those qualities? 3. What (or whom) does this speech ignore or brush to one side? Athens Autochthony: Foundational myth for the Athenians Lots of consequences for how they thought of themselves and how they thought of others Erichthonios Athens hadnt always been a democracy In the Archaic period, Athens was run by a tight oligarchic aristocracy This resulted in the tyranny of Pisistratus who, along with his sons, governed Athens under a tyranny in the 6 century
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