Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Courage in the Democratic PolisIdeology and Critique in Classical Athens$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Ryan K. Balot

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780199982158

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199982158.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.oxfordscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2020. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 26 May 2020

The Courageous Passions of Democratic Athens

The Courageous Passions of Democratic Athens

Chapter:
(p.218) Chapter 10 The Courageous Passions of Democratic Athens
Source:
Courage in the Democratic Polis
Author(s):

Ryan K. Balot

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199982158.003.0010

Through examining four different types of public speech, this chapter shows that Pericles’ rationalistic model of courage coexisted in classical Athens with other, more traditional paradigms. The co-existence of these different paradigms leads us to appreciate certain ambiguities and instabilities in the Athenian experience of courage during the fifth and fourth centuries BC. Court cases, in particular, showed prosecutors and defendants striving to display conformity with the judgments of the demos, rather than praising the independent thinking of individual citizens. Equally, speakers in the courtroom openly referred to shame, humiliation, and fear of punishment as the central and most appropriate motivations for courage. In other types of speech, however, such as the funeral orations of the fourth century, courage was still presented as both informed by practical reasoning about the city’s good and by normatively appropriate emotional responses to danger or foreign attack—in particular, rationally informed anger. There is thus a fundamental ambiguity in the Athenian experience of courage. The democratic Athenians displayed remarkably innovative and rationalistic tendencies, on the one hand, and a certain inclination to withdraw into traditional ideas and attitudes, on the other.

Keywords:   emotion, shame, fear, ideological tension

Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us .