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New PDF release: The Bad Citizen in Classical Athens

By Dr Matthew R. Christ

This e-book offers a clean standpoint on Athenian democracy by means of exploring undesirable citizenship, either as a truth and an concept, in classical Athens, from the overdue 6th century all the way down to 322. If referred to as upon, Athenian electorate have been anticipated to help their urban via army carrier and fiscal outlay. those duties have been primary to Athenian understandings of citizenship and it was once necessary to the city's health and wellbeing that voters satisfy them. the traditional assets, besides the fact that, are packed with allegations that folks have kept away from those tasks or played them deficiently. Claims of draft evasion, cowardice at the battlefield, and avoidance of liturgies and the warfare tax are universal. by way of reading the character and scope of undesirable citizenship in Athens and the city's responses-institutional and ideological-to the phenomenon, this examine goals to light up the connection among citizen and town below the Athenian democracy, and extra widely, the strain among deepest pursuits and public authority in human societies.

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15). , Pl. 907–19). His extended presence in this comedy’s center calls attention, as Aristophanes does elsewhere, to the obstinate resistance of self-interested individuals to group enterprises on and off the comic stage (cf. Ober 1998: 148–9). , evade his citizen obligations), while still enjoying the benefits of citizenship. 54 Even those who accepted the basic terms of this reciprocal relationship, however, might fall short in their citizenship if they believed that, relative to other citizens, they were being asked to “give” too much or “got” too little in return for their efforts.

2) insofar as these did not threaten others or the community at large. , Dem. 45; cf. 27 Democratic institutions helped ensure that these principles would be observed; the popular lawcourts, manned largely by average Athenians, allowed individuals to appeal on equal terms to the city’s laws to protest assaults upon themselves or their interests by magistrates or private persons. The democracy’s high regard for the individual and his interests set Athens apart from most other city-states and in particular from Sparta (Plu.

The manner in which Athenians mixed elements of compulsion and persuasion in this process reflected their shared democratic values. While later chapters will look closely at the interplay of these elements in connection with specific civic obligations, it is worth considering in advance how the democracy, through a combination of compulsion and persuasion, approached the general problem of eliciting good citizenship. Athenians recognized that civic duties, if they were to be carried out promptly and properly, had to be compulsory.

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