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The World of Prometheus
Author: Danielle S. Allen

ISBN: 9780691094892
Format: Paperback
Number Of Pages: 464
Published: 10 November 2002
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 22.9 x 15.2 x 2.3
Description:


For Danielle Allen, punishment is more a window onto democratic Athens' fundamental values than simply a set of official practices. From imprisonment to stoning to refusal of burial, instances of punishment in ancient Athens fueled conversations among ordinary citizens and political and literary figures about the nature of justice. Re-creating in vivid detail the cultural context of this conversation, Allen shows that punishment gave the community an opportunity to establish a shining myth of harmony and cleanliness: that the city could be purified of anger and social struggle, and perfect order achieved. Each member of the city--including notably women and slaves--had a specific role to play in restoring equilibrium among punisher, punished, and society. The common view is that democratic legal processes moved away from the "emotional and personal" to the "rational and civic," but Allen shows that anger, honor, reciprocity, spectacle, and social memory constantly prevailed in Athenian law and politics.

Allen draws upon oratory, tragedy, and philosophy to present the lively intellectual climate in which punishment was incurred, ...

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