"Reading" Greek death: to the end of the classical period
This book offers a series of in-depth studies of some aspects of the beliefs, attitudes, and rituals surrounding death in ancient Greece from the Minoan and Mycenean period to the end of the classical age. Drawing on every kind of available evidence - from literary texts to burial customs, inscriptions, and images in art - the author sheds new light on many key, still essentially problematic, aspects of Greek life, myth, and literature: including the world of the dead in Homer; the perceptions associated with grave monuments and articulated in their images and epigrams; the myths of Charon, Hermes, and the journey of death; and the shifting attitudes towards death in a changing society. The book is also a sophisticated critique of the methodologies appropriate for interpreting the various kinds of evidence for ancient beliefs, and there is discussion of these in the light of insights from anthropology and other disciplines that can help us reconstruct the ancient Greek discourse of death, while minimizing the intrusion of our own culturally determined assumptions which reflect modern thinking rather than ancient realities.
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Death and the World of the Dead in Homer
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Achilles afterlife Alcestis appear archaic epitaphs archaic grave monuments archaic period argument articulated associated assumptions Athens attitudes belief bibliog century chairete Charon context cult culturally determined dead death death-ritual deceased deceased's social persona discussed divine elements Elysion enter Hades epics erected eschatology Euripides expression fact ferryman fifth-century formulation function funerary epigrams grave inscriptions grave monument grave statues Greek Hades Hansen Herakles Hermes Homeric hypothesis Ibid iconographical ideology Iliad images important inscribed grave monument interaction interpretation intertextual frame involved Jeffery korai kore kouros later lekythoi living male meanings memory metonymic Minoan modality Mycenaean Nekyia nexus notion Odyssey Odyssey 11 oimoi parameters Patroklos perceived perception pertaining Pfohl polis praise psychopompos reading reference relationship religious representation represented Richter Ridgway ritual role scenes schema sema semata shades significant Skiadas Sourvinou-Inwood 1986a stelai stele suggests symbolic Teiresias Teithronion epigram Thanatos theme tomb tymbos upper world young