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Ethnic Identity in Greek Antiquity [Paperback]

Jonathan M. Hall

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Book Description

26 Jun 2000
In this book Jonathan Hall seeks to demonstrate that the ethnic groups of ancient Greece, like many ethnic groups throughout the world today, were not ultimately racial, linguistic, religious or cultural groups, but social groups whose 'origins' in extraneous territories were just as often imagined as they were real. Adopting an explicitly anthropological point of view, he examines the evidence of literature, archaeology and linguistics to elucidate the nature of ethnic identity in ancient Greece. Rather than treating Greek ethnic groups as 'natural' or 'essential' - let alone 'racial' - entities, he emphasises the active, constructive and dynamic role of ethnography, genealogy, material culture and language in shaping ethnic consciousness. An introductory chapter outlines the history of the study of ethnicity in Greek antiquity.

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Review

'This is an important book. It is not the first study of ancient Greek ethnicity in recent years, but it is by far the most thorough and systematic … It is a major contribution to Classical studies, and a major challenge to the archaeology of prehistoric ethnicity.' Ian Morris, Cambridge Archaeological Journal

' … a book which [is] a quite extraordinary combination of theoretical sophistication and historical erudition.' Roger Just, Cambridge Archaeological Journal

'Jonathan Hall's book is an event in classical scholarship.' David Konstan, Diaspora

Book Description

The author demonstrates that the ethnic groups of ancient Greece, like many ethnic groups throughout the world today, were not ultimately racial, linguistic, religious or cultural, but social groups whose 'origins' in extraneous territories were just as often imagined as they were real.

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We live in a world surrounded by ethnic conflict. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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