Theologies of Ancient Greek Religion

Theologies of Ancient Greek Religion


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Studied for many years by scholars with Christianising assumptions, Greek religion has often been said to be quite unlike Christianity: a matter of particular actions (orthopraxy), rather than particular beliefs (orthodoxies). This volume dares to think that, both in and through religious practices and in and through religious thought and literature, the ancient Greeks engaged in a sustained conversation about the nature of the gods and how to represent and worship them. It excavates the attitudes towards the gods implicit in cult practice and analyses the beliefs about the gods embedded in such diverse texts and contexts as comedy, tragedy, rhetoric, philosophy, ancient Greek blood sacrifice, myth and other forms of storytelling. The result is a richer picture of the supernatural in ancient Greece, and a whole series of fresh questions about how views of and relations to the gods changed over time.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781316607503
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Publication date: 01/16/2020
Series: Cambridge Classical Studies Series
Pages: 441
Sales rank: 1,202,902
Product dimensions: 5.51(w) x 8.46(h) x 0.67(d)

About the Author

Esther Eidinow is Associate Professor of Ancient Greek History at the University of Nottingham. She has a particular interest in ancient Greek religion and magic. Her publications include Oracles, Curses, and Risk Among the Ancient Greeks (2007, revised edition 2013), Luck, Fate and Fortune: Antiquity and its Legacy (2011) and Envy, Poison and Death: Women on Trial in Ancient Athens (2015). She has co-edited (with Julia Kindt) The Oxford Handbook of Ancient Greek Religion (2015).

Julia Kindt is Associate Professor and Chair of the Department of Classics and Ancient History at the University of Sydney. Her publications include Rethinking Greek Religion (Cambridge, 2012) and Revisiting Delphi: Religion and Storytelling in Ancient Greece (Cambridge, 2016). She has also co-edited (with Esther Eidinow) The Oxford Handbook of Ancient Greek Religion (2015). She is a member of the editorial board of the Journal of Ancient History and a senior editor of the Oxford Research Encyclopaedia of Religion.

Robin Osborne is Professor of Ancient History at the University of Cambridge and a Fellow of King's College, Cambridge, and of the British Academy. His work ranges widely over Greek history, archaeology and art history. His most recent books are Athens and Athenian Democracy (Cambridge, 2010), The History Written on the Classical Greek Body (Cambridge, 2011) and Greek History: The Basics (2014).

Table of Contents

1. Introduction: what might we mean by the theologies of ancient Greek religion? Esther Eidinow, Julia Kindt, Robin Osborne and Shaul Tor; 2. The story of theology and the theology of the story Julia Kindt; 3. Theologies of the family in Homer and Hesiod Barbara Graziosi; 4. Who's afraid of Cypselos? Contested theologies and dynastic dedications Renaud Gagné; 5. Heraclitus on Apollo's language and his own: contemplating oracles and philosophical enquiry Shaul Tor; 6. The 'theology' of the Dionysia and Old Comedy Eric Csapo; 7. Polytheism and tragedy Simon Goldhill; 8. Gods and men in ancient Greek conceptions of lawgiving Hannah Willey; 9. Popular theology: the gift of divine envy Esther Eidinow; 10. Sacrificial theologies Robin Osborne; 11. Theologies of statues Milette Gaifman; 12. The gods in the Athenian Assembly Gunther Martin; 13. Plato and the secularisation of Greek theology Rick Benitez; 14. Philosophy as religion and the meaning of 'providence' in Middle Platonism George Boys-Stones; 15. Narratives of continuity and discontinuity Peter Van Nuffelen.

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