Download e-book for kindle: Ancient Persia in Western history : Hellenism and the by Sasan Samiei

By Sasan Samiei

ISBN-10: 0857724142

ISBN-13: 9780857724144

ISBN-10: 085773606X

ISBN-13: 9780857736062

ISBN-10: 1780764804

ISBN-13: 9781780764801

The Achaemenid Empire, based via Cyrus the nice within the sixth century, was once at its peak the most important empire the realm had but noticeable, stretching throughout Asia, the center East and North Africa. simply because this primary Persian Empire fought a sequence of wars opposed to the traditional Greek city-states, it has usually been forged towards the Hellenistic cultures of the interval. historic Persia in Western historical past is a measured rejoinder to the dominant narrative that considers the Graeco-Persian Wars to be simply the 1st around of an oft-repeated conflict among the despotic 'East' and the commonly enlightened 'West'. Sasan Samiei analyses the historiography which has skewed our knowing of this important period - contrasting the paintings of Edward Gibbon and Goethe, which commemorated Classicism and Hellenistic historical past, with later writers comparable to John Linton Myres. ultimately, Samiei explores the cross-cultural encounters which constituted the Achaemenid interval itself, and repositions it as necessary to the historical past of Europe, Asia and the center East.

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Get Ancient Persia in Western history : Hellenism and the PDF

The Achaemenid Empire, based by way of Cyrus the good within the sixth century, used to be at its peak the biggest empire the area had but obvious, stretching throughout Asia, the center East and North Africa. simply because this primary Persian Empire fought a chain of wars opposed to the traditional Greek city-states, it has frequently been solid towards the Hellenistic cultures of the interval.

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63 This healthy youthfulness was supplemented by lauding the uniqueness of the Greek form of aestheticism. ’65 Many of these qualities, in Winckelmann’s view, are to be found in Greek sculptures. Here is his ‘perfect law of art’: The universal, dominant characteristic of Greek masterpieces [. ] is noble simplicity and serene greatness in the pose as well as in the expression. ’68 It is precisely this type of analytical approach that directed Winckelmann to infer that the Greeks did not merely copy nature, but added something to it; they added ideal beauty.

In addition, this viewpoint was complemented with an undisguised hostility towards the democratization of the electioneering process for parliament (where Mitford sat as a Tory MP). Mitford argued that by handing ‘every free Athenian [. ] his equal right to vote and speak’, Solon (638– 558 BC ) had put ‘unlimited power in the hands of those least capable of properly exercising any power’. 51 The temptation for England to adopt this Athenian model, in Mitford’s view, should be resisted forcefully.

This is precisely what had happened in the nineteenth century. It is worth underscoring the point that the intellectual climate of this period was particularly propitious for an overarching supra-structure to assert itself. Many new and revolutionary ideas were aired in this period: Hegel’s theories of state, Darwin’s theory of evolution, Marx’s dialectic materialism, Comte’s sociology, Lyell’s geology, Mu¨ller’s linguistics and J. S. Mill’s eclectic output were clamouring for some form of academic-cum-institutional order.

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Ancient Persia in Western history : Hellenism and the representation of the Achaemenid Empire by Sasan Samiei


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