A Local History of Greek Polytheism

Gods, People and the Land of Aigina, 800-400 BCE 


This book provides the first comprehensive and detailed study of the deities and cults of the important Greek island-state of Aigina from the Geometric to Classical periods (800-400 BCE). It rests on a thorough first-hand reconsideration of the archaeological, epigraphic and literary evidence. The development of the local cults is reconstructed, along with their interrelationships and how they responded to the social needs of the Aiginetans. Revising other recent models of interpretation, the author proposes a distinctive approach, informed by anthropology and social theory, to the study of the religious life of the ancient Greeks. On this basis, she uses the case of Aigina to explore fundamental issues such as the nature and variety of local religious worlds and their relationship to the panhellenic concepts and practices of Greek religion.

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Irene Polinskaya, Ph.D. (2001) in Classics, Stanford University, is Lecturer in Greek History at King's College London. She has published articles on approaches to the study of Greek religion, as well as on the history and epigraphy of ancient Aigina.
'Die langjährige Beschäftigung der Autorin mit diesem Thema und die profunde Kenntnis der literarischen, epigraphischen und archäologischen Quellen haben zu einem informativen Gesamtwerk geführt, das von einem interdisziplinären Zugang geprägt ist'

Jörg Weilhartner, Vienna, Gymnasium 123, März 2016
The book will be of interest to students of ancient Greek religion and ancient history, as well as classical philologists, archaeologists, and art historians with a particular interest in Aigina.
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