Wounded Heroes: Vulnerability as a Virtue in Ancient Greek Literature and Philosophy

2014.09.09 : View this Review Online | View Recent NDPR Reviews Marina Berzins McCoy, Wounded Heroes: Vulnerability as a Virtue in Ancient Greek Literature and Philosophy, Oxford University
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2014.09.09 : View this Review Online | View Recent NDPR Reviews Marina Berzins McCoy, Wounded Heroes: Vulnerability as a Virtue in Ancient Greek Literature and Philosophy, Oxford University Press, 2013, 228pp., $99.00 (hbk), ISBN 9780199672783. Reviewed by Håkan Tell, Dartmouth College Marina Berzins McCoy sets out to explore philosophically the concept of human vulnerability in Greek thought. Vulnerability is defined not only as the ability to be subject to wounds, but also, and more importantly, as the "self-awareness and acceptance of being subject to harm" (205). The starting point of the argument is that human vulnerability in Greek culture should not be thought of as synonymous with weakness and lack of virtue -- a position that McCoy thinks has prevailed for too long in modern scholarship. Ancient Greek culture is less interested in valorizing self-sufficiency and strength (physical and moral) as qualities for emulation than has been hitherto recognized. When. . .

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