Paul Chrystal has written the first full length study of women and warfare in the Graeco Roman world. Although the conduct of war was generally monopolized by men, there were plenty of exceptions with women directly involved in its direction and even as combatants, Artemisia, Olympias, Cleopatra and Agrippina the Elder being famous examples. And both Greeks and Romans encountered women among their barbarian enemies, such as Tomyris, Boudicca and Zenobia. More commonly, of course, women were directly affected by war as noncombatant victims, of rape and enslavement as spoils of war and this makes up an important strand of the authors discussion. The portrayal of female warriors and goddesses in classical mythology and literature, and the use of war to justify gender roles and hierarchies, are also considered. Overall it is a landmark survey of how war in the Classical world affected and was affected by women.
The martial virtues—courage, loyalty, cunning, and strength—were central to male identity in the ancient world, and antique literature is replete with depictions of men cultivating and exercising these virtues on the battlefield. In Women and War in Antiquity, sixteen scholars reexamine classical sources to uncover the complex but hitherto unexplored relationship between women and war in ancient Greece and Rome. They reveal that women played a much more active role in battle than previously assumed, embodying martial virtues in both real and mythological combat. The essays in the collection, taken from the first meeting of the European Research Network on Gender Studies in Antiquity, approach the topic from philological, historical, and material culture perspectives. The contributors examine discussions of women and war in works that span the ancient canon, from Homer’s epics and the major tragedies in Greece to Seneca’s stoic writings in first-century Rome. They consider a vast panorama of scenes in which women are portrayed as spectators, critics, victims, causes, and beneficiaries of war. This deft volume, which ultimately challenges the conventional scholarly opposition of standards of masculinity and femininity, will appeal to scholars and students of the classical world, European warfare, and gender studies. -- Kurt Raaflaub, Brown University, coeditor of Raymond Westbrook’
Information about women is scattered throughout the fragmented mosaic of ancient history: the vivid poetry of Sappho survived antiquity on remnants of damaged papyrus; the inscription on a beautiful fourth century B.C.E. grave praises the virtues of Mnesarete, an Athenian woman who died young; a great number of Roman wives were found guilty of poisoning their husbands, but was it accidental food poisoning, or disease, or something more sinister. Apart from the legends of Cleopatra, Dido and Lucretia, and images of graceful maidens dancing on urns, the evidence about the lives of women of the classical world--visual, archaeological, and written--has remained uncollected and uninterpreted. Now, the lavishly illustrated and meticulously researched Women in the Classical World lifts the curtain on the women of ancient Greece and Rome, exploring the lives of slaves and prostitutes, Athenian housewives, and Rome's imperial family. The first book on classical women to give equal weight to written texts and artistic representations, it brings together a great wealth of materials--poetry, vase painting, legislation, medical treatises, architecture, religious and funerary art, women's ornaments, historical epics, political speeches, even ancient coins--to present women in the historical and cultural context of their time. Written by leading experts in the fields of ancient history and art history, women's studies, and Greek and Roman literature, the book's chronological arrangement allows the changing roles of women to unfold over a thousand-year period, beginning in the eighth century B.C.E. Both the art and the literature highlight women's creativity, sexuality and coming of age, marriage and childrearing, religious and public roles, and other themes. Fascinating chapters report on the wild behavior of Spartan and Etruscan women and the mythical Amazons; the changing views of the female body presented in male-authored gynecological treatises; the "new woman" represented by the love poetry of the late Republic and Augustan Age; and the traces of upper- and lower-class life in Pompeii, miraculously preserved by the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 79 C.E. Provocative and surprising, Women in the Classical World is a masterly foray into the past, and a definitive statement on the lives of women in ancient Greece and Rome.
It has often been thought that participation in fertility rituals was women's most important religious activity in classical Greece. Matthew Dillon's wide-ranging study makes it clear that women engaged in numerous other rites and cults, and that their role in Greek religion was actually more important than that of men. Women invoked the gods' help in becoming pregnant, venerated the god of wine, worshipped new and exotic deities, used magic for both erotic and pain-relieving purposes, and far more besides. Clear and comprehensive, this volume challenges many stereotypes of Greek women and offers unexpected insights into their experience of religion. With more than fifty illustrations, and translated extracts from contemporary texts, this is an essential resource for the study of women and religion in classical Greece.
Beginning with the earliest recorded evidence and spanning the world, an illustrated study explores the varied roles women haved played in wartime, from nurse to warrior to soldier's mother, and investigates women's participation in warfare. UP.
War suffused Roman life to a degree unparalleled in other ancient societies. Through a combination of obsessive discipline and frenzied (though carefully orchestrated) brutality, Rome's armies conquered most of the lands stretching from Scotland to Syria, and the Black Sea to Gibraltar. The place of war in Roman culture has been studied in historical terms, but this is the first book to examine the ways in which Romans represented war, in both visual imagery and in literary accounts. Audience reception and the reconstruction of display contexts are recurrent themes here, as is the language of images: a language that is sometimes explicit and at other times allusive in its representation of war. The chapters encompass a wide variety of art media (architecture, painting, sculpture, building, relief, coin), and they focus on the towering period of Roman power and international influence: the 3rd century B.C. to the 2nd century A.D.
This textbook is endorsed by OCR and supports the specification for GCSE Classical Civilisation (first teaching September 2017). It covers the Thematic Study Component 12 and all three Literature and Culture options (Components 21–23): Thematic Study: Women in the Ancient World by Robert Hancock-Jones Literature and Culture 1: The Homeric World by Dan Menashe Literature and Culture 2: Roman City Life by James Renshaw Literature and Culture 3: War and Warfare by James Renshaw How much can we know about the lives of women in the ancient world? Why is the hero Odysseus such an interesting character? What was it like to watch a gladiatorial fight? Why was the Roman army so successful? This book guides GCSE students to a greater understanding of such issues. The opening chapter examines the lives of women in Greece and Rome, and also focuses on women in myth and legend. The following three chapters invite readers to explore the culture of the Mycenaeans, city life in the Roman world, and ancient Greek and Roman warfare, focusing both on aspects of ancient society and on related literature. The ideal preparation for the final examinations, all content is presented by experts and experienced teachers in a clear and accessible narrative. Ancient literary and visual sources are described and analysed, with supporting images and examples of non-prescribed sources. Helpful student features include study questions, activities, further reading, and boxes focusing in on key people, events and terms. Practice questions and exam guidance prepare students for assessment. A Companion Website is available at www.bloomsbury.com/class-civ-gcse.