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Athenian Democracy

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The 5th century BC witnessed not only the emergence of one of the first democracies but also the Persian and the Peloponnesian Wars. John Thorley provides a concise analysis of the development and operation of Athenian democracy against this backdrop. Taking into account both primary source material and the work of modern historians, Athenian Democracy examines: - The Prelu The 5th century BC witnessed not only the emergence of one of the first democracies but also the Persian and the Peloponnesian Wars. John Thorley provides a concise analysis of the development and operation of Athenian democracy against this backdrop. Taking into account both primary source material and the work of modern historians, Athenian Democracy examines: - The Prelude to democracy - How the democatic system emerged - How this system worked in practice - The efficiency of this system of government - The success of Athenian democracy Including a useful Chronology and Bibliography, this second edition has been updated to take into account recent research.


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The 5th century BC witnessed not only the emergence of one of the first democracies but also the Persian and the Peloponnesian Wars. John Thorley provides a concise analysis of the development and operation of Athenian democracy against this backdrop. Taking into account both primary source material and the work of modern historians, Athenian Democracy examines: - The Prelu The 5th century BC witnessed not only the emergence of one of the first democracies but also the Persian and the Peloponnesian Wars. John Thorley provides a concise analysis of the development and operation of Athenian democracy against this backdrop. Taking into account both primary source material and the work of modern historians, Athenian Democracy examines: - The Prelude to democracy - How the democatic system emerged - How this system worked in practice - The efficiency of this system of government - The success of Athenian democracy Including a useful Chronology and Bibliography, this second edition has been updated to take into account recent research.

34 review for Athenian Democracy

  1. 5 out of 5

    Joshua

    I'm not sure how I always wind up stumbling upon books few people have bothered to review, but it just adds to the fun, and in the case of this book I was more than satisfied. Athenian Demo racy is a collection of previously published essays and lectures that were compiled into this book for posterity, and scholars and history enthusiasts of the Classical period are fortunate for such a decision. Jones's book attempts to explore the facets and character of the Athenian democratic system and to un I'm not sure how I always wind up stumbling upon books few people have bothered to review, but it just adds to the fun, and in the case of this book I was more than satisfied. Athenian Demo racy is a collection of previously published essays and lectures that were compiled into this book for posterity, and scholars and history enthusiasts of the Classical period are fortunate for such a decision. Jones's book attempts to explore the facets and character of the Athenian democratic system and to understand how this system actually operated for, as he observes, often it was truly an oligarchy rather than a functioning republic. Looking at the economics, military structure, governmental bodies, and class differences the reader observe a side of Athens that is not always so elaborated upon by popular and even academic scholars. This is not always an easily approachable book, for Jones's prose can be rather dense, and when he digs into the minutiae of economic figures it becomes a bit of a slog. Yet despite this Jones's book is still worth the reader's time because it offers an examination that is critical without being condemnatory. Jones gives his reader a real glimpse into the realities of the Athenian state pointing towards the inconsistencies and faults without dissolving into condemnation. This book is still relevant and important to the discourse even after close to half a century. The image of Athens as a bastion of liberty, freedom, and democracy is underscored by the economic realities of oligarchical establishment and the proliferation of slaves within the city. It's the skill of Jones as a writer and historian that the reader is, by the end, not forgiving of these faults but at least a little understanding.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Dan

    In this study, Jones attempts to trace the outlines of Athenian society along modern historiographic lines. The book presents five essays, which include economic and demographic analyses of Athens during the classical period. He also attempts to answer the question, which can only be addressed conjecutrally, of the extent to which the Athenian economy was based on slave labor. In general, Jones provides the most reasonable hypotheses that I have seen about the total population, the distribution In this study, Jones attempts to trace the outlines of Athenian society along modern historiographic lines. The book presents five essays, which include economic and demographic analyses of Athens during the classical period. He also attempts to answer the question, which can only be addressed conjecutrally, of the extent to which the Athenian economy was based on slave labor. In general, Jones provides the most reasonable hypotheses that I have seen about the total population, the distribution of wealth, the class structure and other vital statistics of classical Athens. In some cases, as in his discussion of trade balance at the end of the fourth chapter, he moves in the direction of conclusions that the evidence might not really warrant, but these instances are limited and do not affect the overall reliability of the book. Most useful is his third chapter, entitled "The Critics." It is a commonplace that the Athenians practiced democracy without theorizing about it. Those philosophers whose writings survive to us almost exclusively represent the oligarchic perspective. Jones provides a plausible reconstruction of how the large majority of citizens and politicians who believed in, worked and bled for Athenian democracy would have answered the intellectual elites who invented political philosophy, had those citizens thought it worth their while to do so.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Evan Procknow

  4. 5 out of 5

    Zishan Khan

  5. 5 out of 5

    Adam Chan

  6. 5 out of 5

    Rob Marshall

  7. 5 out of 5

    Virgil Walker

  8. 4 out of 5

    Lisa Lanning

  9. 5 out of 5

    Cliodhna Ni Ghadhra

  10. 4 out of 5

    Hannah Newsham

  11. 5 out of 5

    Jesse

  12. 4 out of 5

    Frederik Vandelannoote

  13. 5 out of 5

    Michael

  14. 4 out of 5

    Kevin

  15. 5 out of 5

    Daniel Taylor

  16. 4 out of 5

    Yashaswini Sauda

  17. 5 out of 5

    Johnny

  18. 5 out of 5

    Thomas

  19. 4 out of 5

    xhxhx

  20. 4 out of 5

    Adrienne

  21. 4 out of 5

    Debra Hamel

  22. 4 out of 5

    Rodolfo Lazo de la Vega

  23. 5 out of 5

    LPenting

  24. 5 out of 5

    Jannis Alexakis

  25. 4 out of 5

    Jeremy

  26. 4 out of 5

    Janie Groth

  27. 5 out of 5

    Koekebakkerr

  28. 5 out of 5

    Abdullah Karabey

  29. 4 out of 5

    William

  30. 5 out of 5

    Aim0o

  31. 5 out of 5

    Jason Chambers

  32. 4 out of 5

    Leif Hammer

  33. 5 out of 5

    James

  34. 4 out of 5

    Marco Battisti

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