Courage in the Democratic Polis: Ideology and Critique in Classical Athens

2015.03.21 : View this Review Online | View Recent NDPR Reviews Ryan K. Balot, Courage in the Democratic Polis: Ideology and Critique in Classical Athens, Oxford University Press, 2014, 408pp.,
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2015.03.21 : View this Review Online | View Recent NDPR Reviews Ryan K. Balot, Courage in the Democratic Polis: Ideology and Critique in Classical Athens, Oxford University Press, 2014, 408pp., $65.00 (hbk), ISBN 9780199982158. Reviewed by Chloe Balla, University of Crete This book is an excellent discussion of early theoretical reflections on andreia (a term derived from the Greek word for man, ἀνήρ, and translated mostly as 'courage' but, depending on the context, also as 'manliness'). Through a thoughtful analysis of the sources, Ryan Balot allows us to understand the role of this cardinal virtue in the construction of competing values that shaped the antithesis between Athenian democracy and its non-democratic rivals. The starting point of his narrative is a statement from Pericles' Funeral Oration, which shows the Athenians' distinctive understanding of courage: "for we differ in this: that we ourselves, the same men, both dare [τολμᾶν] the most and calculate about. . .

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