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In: The Impact of Classical Greece on European and National Identities
In: Brill's Companion to Herodotus
In: Brill's Companion to Herodotus
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Abstract

Present-day parliamentary democracies face severe criticism. Beside grievances due to social and economic changes, many critics contend that the elected government does not truly represent the citizens or their interests. One possible remedy for the perceived democratic shortcomings of elected representation is the institution of citizen bodies selected by lot. For its growing number of advocates, this idea is inspired by the allotment of political offices in democratic classical Athens. This article investigates how sortition for political office from all citizens was introduced and finally anchored in Athens. Understanding the necessary conditions for sortition may be helpful for current initiatives in our modern democracies. Initially, this method was not a success, and it remained the object of criticism, especially when it was broadly applied. Nonetheless, most of the citizens embraced the system and it worked rather well for Athenian democratic self-governance. I argue that sortition in the domain of politics relies on trust in the justice of the lot as instrument, and on a profound sense of the political equality of all citizens, including a clear and accepted idea of who is to share in the procedure. And last but not least, citizens need to be willing to take an active part in self-governance.

In: Politeia and Koinōnia
Modern and Ancient Perspectives on a Persistent Myth
Author:
The Early Amazons offers a new understanding of the ancient Amazon myth, situating mythical representations in the realm of cultural history.
The first section examines how the Amazons have presented a challenge to views on history, myth and gender in classical mythology from the late eighteenth century up to the impact of structuralism. Topics included are nineteenth-century historiography and the interest in linguistics.
The second section sheds new light on the culture of archaic Greece, offering a coherent assessment of literary and visual representations. Taking mythical narrative as a form of oral storytelling, it shows the emergence of the Amazon motif and its meaning in the world of epic. Iconographical analysis reveals how the visual arts have made a contribution of their own to the imaginary presence of the Amazons.
In: The Early Amazons
In: The Early Amazons
In: The Early Amazons
In: The Early Amazons