House and Society in the Ancient Greek World

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Cambridge University Press, May 10, 2001 - Architecture - 220 pages
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This 1999 book re-examines traditional assumptions about the nature of social relationships in Greek households during the Classical and Hellenistic periods. Through detailed exploration of archaeological evidence from individual houses, Lisa Nevett identifies a recognisable concept of the citizen household as a social unit, and suggests that this was present in numerous Greek cities. She argues that in such households relations between men and women, traditionally perceived as dominating the domestic environment, should be placed within the wider context of domestic activity. Although gender was an important cultural factor which helped to shape the organisation of the house, this was balanced against other influences, notably the relationship between household members and outsiders. At the same time the role of the household in relation to the wider social structures of the polis, or city state, changed rapidly through time, with the house itself coming to represent an important symbol of personal prestige.
 

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Contents

Introduction
1
Domestic space and ancient Greek society
4
Examining the oikos
10
Approaches to the material record
21
some basic assumptions
29
From pots to people towards a framework for interpreting the archaeological material
34
Approaching ancient Greek perceptions of domestic space
36
Searching for individuals in the archaeological record
39
an overview
123
Regional patterns in domestic organisation Greek houses from Sicily and southern Italy
127
Houses of fifthcentury date
129
Houses of fourthcentury date
135
Houses of thirdcentury date
144
Rural housing in the hinterland of western Greek settlements
151
an overview
152
House and society in the ancient Greek world
154

towards an analytical framework
50
The city of Olynthos a detailed casestudy in domestic organisation
53
archaeological considerations
57
Investigating the organisation of individual houses
61
Comparing different households
74
house and society in fourthcentury Olynthos
79
Olynthos in context houses in northern central and southern Greece and the Aegean islands
80
Houses of the later fifth to midfourth centuries
81
Houses of the later fourth to earlier third century
114
The applicability of the oikos concept among different social or economic groups
156
Origins and subsequent development of the Classical oikos
158
Regional differences in the oikos concept
167
Conclusions
173
Appendices
176
Notes
194
References
198
Index
216
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About the author (2001)

Lisa Nevett is a Lecturer in Classical Studies at The Open University.

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