Tag: Greek

Jan 01 2015

Theogony / Works and Days / Shield by Hesiod

Hesiod’s poems, along with Homer’s epics, can be considered the bible of the ancient Greeks, but Hesiod’s works are far more religious in nature than Homer’s, both in theology and in moral doctrine. Theogony describes the origin of the gods and the world. I am not sure if Hesiod is simply recounting basic accepted beliefs …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2015/01/01/theogony-works-and-days-shield-by-hesiod/

Dec 28 2014

The Republic by Plato

Plato covers a range of subjects in this rambling work, but the chief one is the problem of what constitutes the best society. Naturally, Plato thinks that in any ideal society, the philosophers will be in charge. His Republic resembles Thomas More’s Utopia in that it would be a place where the citizens were incomparably …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2014/12/28/the-republic-by-plato/

Oct 25 2014

Early Socratic Dialogues by Plato

It seems to me there is something flawed in the Socratic question and answer approach to discerning truth. A person may know what something is and even be an expert on it even if he does not know how to precisely define it. An ophthalmologist, for instance, knows what sight is and is competent to …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2014/10/25/early-socratic-dialogues-by-plato/

Jul 12 2014

Politics by Aristotle

Aristotle’s politics strike me as rather conservative. He believes some democracy is good, but not too much. The lower classes should be kept firmly in their place, and the upper classes should not have their property rights disturbed. He emphatically does not believe that all men are equal. He believes that education should be a …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2014/07/12/politics-by-aristotle/

May 07 2014

The Nicomachean Ethics by Aristotle

I am by now used to Aristotle’s inimitable dullness, but this is actually one of his more readable and engaging works. What constitutes the good life? Aristotle believes that a happy life is necessarily a virtuous life, something I myself have grave doubts about. Unlike most Americans, he believes virtue is best exercised in the …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2014/05/07/the-nicomachean-ethics-by-aristotle/

Jun 17 2012

The Enneads by Plotinus

This work deserves more discussion than space allows, even though much of it was unintelligible to me. It represents Plotinus’ quest to know and understand God, which for him consists of a trinity: the One, the Intellectual-Principle, and the All-Soul. Part of his problem is that he is trying to describe in words something that …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2012/06/17/the-enneads-by-plotinus/

May 15 2011

Alexander to Actium by Peter Green

I can’t possibly do justice to this monumental work in the short space allowed for Facebook book reviews, but I would just like to say that in additional to being informative and educational, this book was delightfully entertaining and enoyable. I am currently taking a course on the Hellenistic Age, but this book, combined with …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2011/05/15/alexander-to-actium-by-peter-green/

Feb 22 2008

A History of Greece to 322 B.C. by N.G.L Hammond

This was a historian’s rather than a layman’s book, a bit more packed with details than I am used to, but it is a thorough one-volume treatment of a subject that has always fascinated me. I can’t do justice to it in 1000 characters, but one observation I would make is that the Spartans have …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2008/02/22/a-history-of-greece-to-322-b-c-by-n-g-l-hammond/

Feb 12 2008

Alexander the Great by Lewis Cummings

Many historians have fallen in love with Alexander, but Lewis Cummings remains cold-eyed and immune to his charm. Cummings sees him as a bloodthirsty tyrant, possessed of an impetuous and almost childish nature, whose military genius served only the evil purpose of conquest and imperialism. Yet not even the most hostile biographer can deny what …

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