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The Western Time of Ancient History

The Western Time of Ancient History
Historiographical Encounters with the Greek and Roman Pasts


Alexandra Lianeri, François Hartog, Peter Burke, Giuseppe Cambiano, Howard Caygill, Stefan Rebenich, Giovanna Ceserani, Kostas Vlassopoulos, Ulrich Muhlack, Neville Morley, Rosalind Thomas, Jonas Grethlein, Ellen O'Gorman, Michael Williams, Oswyn Murray, John Dunn
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  • Date Published: March 2011
  • availability: Available
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9780521883139

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About the Authors
  • This book examines the conceptual and temporal frames through which modern Western historiography has linked itself to classical antiquity. In doing so, it articulates a genealogical problematic of what history is and a more strictly focused reappraisal of Greek and Roman historical thought. Ancient ideas of history have played a key role in modern debates about history writing, from Kant through Hegel to Nietzsche and Heidegger, and from Friedrich Creuzer through George Grote and Theodor Mommsen to Momigliano and Moses Finley; yet scholarship has paid little attention to the theoretical implications of the reception of these ideas. The essays in this collection cover a wide range of relevant topics and approaches and boast distinguished authors from across Europe in the fields of classics, ancient and modern history and the theory of historiography.

    • Provides new perspectives for examining the concept of ancient history in Western historical thought
    • Advances a dialogue between contemporary historians of antiquity and those of modern times, involving leading scholars in both fields
    • Revisits some key questions in the history and theory of historiography and proposes new categories for criticising the 'classical' foundations of Western historical thought
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    Reviews & endorsements

    'This book of essays, uniformly learned, perspicuous, and philosophically sophisticated, constitutes a genuine revision of traditional notions of the relation between Greek and Roman ideas about temporality and historicity and their modern counterparts. The essays question the presumed genealogical affiliation between the Greek 'founders' of a historical idea of time and their modern avatars. Not only is history shown to have taken on many different forms and modes in antiquity, but the mainstream tradition begun by Herodotus and Thucydides is shown to have been quite alien to much of what is taken to be the orthodoxy of modern, post-Rankean historiography. The 'past' of the classical age will never look quite the same again.' Hayden White, University Professor of the History of Consciousness, Emeritus, University of California

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    Product details

    • Date Published: March 2011
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9780521883139
    • length: 372 pages
    • dimensions: 235 x 159 x 24 mm
    • weight: 0.73kg
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    Introduction. Unfounding times: the idea and ideal of ancient history in Western historical thought Alexandra Lianeri
    Part I. Theorising Western Time: Concepts and Models:
    1. Time's authority François Hartog
    2. Exemplarity and anti-exemplarity in Early Modern Europe Peter Burke
    3. Greek philosophy and Western history: a philosophy-centred temporality Giuseppe Cambiano
    4. Historiography and political theology: Momigliano and the end of history Howard Caygill
    Part II. Ancient History and Modern Temporalities:
    5. The making of a bourgeois antiquity. Wilhelm von Humboldt and Greek history Stefan Rebenich
    6. Modern histories of Ancient Greece: genealogies, contexts and eighteenth-century narrative historiography Giovanna Ceserani
    7. Acquiring (a) historicity: Greek history, temporalities and eurocentrism in the Sattelzeit Kostas Vlassopoulos
    8. Herodotus and Thucydides in the view of nineteenth-century German historians Ulrich Muhlack
    9. Monumentality and the meaning of the past in ancient and modern historiography Neville Morley
    Part III. Unfounding Time In and Through Ancient Historical Thought:
    10. Thucydides and social change: between akribeia and universality Rosalind Thomas
    11. Historia magistra vitae in Herodotus and Thucydides? The exemplary use of the past, and ancient and modern temporalities Jonas Grethlein
    12. Repetition and exemplarity in historical thought: ancient Rome and the ghosts of modernity Ellen O'Gorman
    13. Time and authority in the chronicle of Sulpicius Severus Michael Williams
    Part IV. Afterword:
    14. Ancient history in the eighteenth century Oswyn Murray
    15. Seeing in and through time John Dunn.

  • Editor

    Alexandra Lianeri, University of Thessaloniki, Greece
    Alexandra Lianeri is Assistant Professor of Greek and Translation Theory at the University of Thessaloniki. She has written in the fields of the reception and translation of antiquity, the theory and history of historiography, translation theory and the history of political thought. In addition to articles in these fields, she has co-edited the volume Translation and the Classic (2008) and is currently completing a monograph on the modern history of ancient democracy as well as co-editing a volume on the history of ancient philosophy.


    Alexandra Lianeri, François Hartog, Peter Burke, Giuseppe Cambiano, Howard Caygill, Stefan Rebenich, Giovanna Ceserani, Kostas Vlassopoulos, Ulrich Muhlack, Neville Morley, Rosalind Thomas, Jonas Grethlein, Ellen O'Gorman, Michael Williams, Oswyn Murray, John Dunn

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