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The dark side of 'democracy's birthplace' - revisiting Ancient Athens


6 June 2011

We like to imagine the Athenians as devoted to freedom and the spirit of reason. Certainly there is much to praise about Athens, but the city could also be violent, irrational, xenophobic, misogynist, and brutally imperialist.

On Tuesday 7 June in a Sydney Ideas talk, Dr Alastair Blanshard from the Department of Classics and Ancient History at the University of Sydney will explore the myths we tell ourselves about ancient Athens.

Dr Blanshard explains that a starting point for his talk is the reflection of the fifth-century BC Greek historian Thucydides. He tried to imagine a world where all memory of Athens had faded and only the ruins of its civilisation remained.

To read the full article, click here.