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Lecture 1.doc

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University of Toronto St. George
Victoria Wohl

Lecture 1 Jan 9th 2011 Lecture 1 - Introduction, History and background -greek culture and society -> HUGE topic but we are going to focus on Athens because it was the most powerful also because it produced the most literature -self (greeks) and ‘other’ (everyone who wasn’t greek) -Right and wrong way to drink -> mix with water (so dont get too drunk); do NOT drink fermented grain -alterity -> the relationship b/w self and other; very complex dynamic; can be dangerous -> gives a simplistic view of the other, gives people an egotistic view (xenophobic and masoinitic) -off because their political structure, alphabet and some other stuff was adapted from those who they defined as “other” -through their tragedies learned that woman can be strong (let them see themselves through the eyes of the other) Geo and Topography -in the Aegean seas which is apart of the Mediterranean sea -Even though thought its’ surrounding neighbours were barbarians they were involved in extensive exchange with them (grain from Egypt and etc; also imported some cultural aspects) -Greece is VERY dependent on the sea for salt and fish (staples of their diet) but also for POWER -if control the sea => controlled the whole show; so the people with the best navy (Athens) had the power (in Athens those who controlled the navy (the rowers) had the power, so Athenian democracy was kind of based on this) -Very mountainous terrain has implications for greece life -20-30% of greece was arable (useable for agriculture); so dont have a lot of cows (which need grass to eat) but would have barley, fish products, goats, olives, olive oil and grapes -land would support the people but would have to work VERY hard -communication b/w different parts of Greece was really hard because of the mountains -> affected the development of Greek culture. Greece didnt become a united country until the 19th century -built cities in the valleys Lecture 1 Jan 9th 2011 -Barley cakes with cheese, grilled fish, thrushes (bird), sheep honey cakes and figs = FEAST History of Greece -inhabited since the stone age but the first major culture was the Mycenaean culture BUT there was the Minoan culture that came first (but on Crete; did NOT have a lasting impact on greek culture, also the Minoan language has not yet been dephicered). My- cenaean culture -> lots of impact because time of the Oediycuss -Mycenaean culture -> wealthy powerful kings (hierarchical culture), very militaristic (found lots of armour); has a written language (called Linear B which was very hard to master). -Translated tax documents -> tell you what people were doing/spending money
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