The Greek Praise of Poverty: Origins of Ancient Cynicism

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9780268025823: The Greek Praise of Poverty: Origins of Ancient Cynicism

William Desmond, taking issue with typical assessments of the ancient Cynics, contends that figures such as Antisthenes and Diogenes were not cultural outcasts or marginal voices in the classical culture of the fifth and fourth centuries B.C. Rather, the Cynic movement had deep and significant roots in what Desmond calls "the Greek praise of poverty." Desmond demonstrates that classical attitudes toward wealth were complex and ambivalent, and allowed for an implicit praise of poverty and the virtues it could inspire. From an economic and political point of view, the poor majority at Athens and elsewhere were natural democrats who distrusted great concentrations of wealth as potentially oligarchical or tyrannical. Hence, the poor could be praised in contemporary literature for their industry, honesty, frugality, and temperance. The rich, on the other hand, were often criticized as idle, unjust, arrogant, and profligate. These perspectives were reinforced by typical Greek experiences of war, and the belief that poverty fostered the virtues of courage and endurance. Finally, from an early date, Greek philosophers associated wisdom with the transcendence of sense experience and of such worldly values as wealth and honor. The Cynics, Desmond asserts, assimilated all of these ideas in creating their distinctive and radical brand of asceticism. Theirs was a startling and paradoxical outlook, but it had broad appeal and would pe

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About the Author:

William D. Desmond is a lecturer in the Department of Classics at Trinity College, Dublin.

Review:

"According to Desmond, democratic populism, Greek heroism, and a philosophic yearning for absolute truth--forerunners of Cynic asceticism--all derive from the virtue of frugality. . . . Philological and philosophical, Desmond draws widely from the original Greek sources and argues persuasively for his provocative conclusions." —Choice

"The ancient Cynics have long been seen as exceptional and outside the margins of Greek culture. William Desmond makes a powerful argument against this perception, by searching for the origins of Cynic ideas and attitudes within mainstream Greek culture and society. He examines a wide number of different texts, ranging from Homer to Hesiod to the tragic poets, Thucydides, Herodotus, Xenophon and of course Plato and Aristotle. . . This is a very successful and interesting book that deserves to be read by a wide audience." —Bryn Mawr Classical Review

“In his thought-provoking The Greek Praise of Poverty: Origins of Ancient Cynicism, William D. Desmond proposes that the chief reason for this widespread appeal and longevity is that, for all its flamboyance, Cynicism in fact had deep roots in traditional Greek culture, and in particular in Greek suspicions of wealth, and praise of frugality and the simple life . . . erudite, scholarly and mostly well-written.” —Times Literary Supplement, March 23, 2007 

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Desmond, William D
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Descrizione libro University of Notre Dame Press, United States, 2006. Paperback. Condizione libro: New. Annotated edition. Language: English . This book usually ship within 10-15 business days and we will endeavor to dispatch orders quicker than this where possible. Brand New Book. William Desmond, taking issue with common popular and scholarly views of the ancient Greek Cynics, contends that early Cynics like Antisthenes and Diogenes were not cultural outcasts or marginal voices in classical culture; rather, the Cynic movement through the fourth century B.C. had deep and significant roots in what Desmond calls the Greek praise of poverty. Desmond demonstrates that classical views of wealth were complex and allowed for the admiration of poverty and the virtues it could inspire. He explains Cynicism s rise in popularity in the ancient world by exploring the set of attitudes that collectively formed the Greek praise of poverty. Desmond argues that in the fifth and fourth centuries B.C., economic, political, military, and philosophical thought contained explicit criticisms of wealth and praise of poverty. From an economic and political point of view, the poor majority at Athens and elsewhere were natural democrats who distrusted great concentrations of wealth as potentially oligarchical or tyrannical. In contemporary literature, the poor are those who do most of the necessary work and are honest, self-sufficient, and temperate.The rich, on the other hand, are idle, arrogant, and unjust. These perspectives were reinforced by the Greek experience of war and the belief that poverty fostered the virtues of courage, strength, and endurance. Finally, from an early date, Greek philosophers associated wisdom with the transcendence of sense experience and of conventional values such as wealth and honor. The Cynics, Desmond asserts, assimilated all of these ideas in creating their distinctive and radical brand of asceticism. Desmond s work is a compelling reevaluation of ancient Cynicism and its classical environment, one that makes an important contribution to scholarship of the classical and early Hellenistic periods. Codice libro della libreria TNP9780268025823

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Descrizione libro University of Notre Dame Press, United States, 2006. Paperback. Condizione libro: New. Annotated edition. Language: English . Brand New Book ***** Print on Demand *****. William Desmond, taking issue with common popular and scholarly views of the ancient Greek Cynics, contends that early Cynics like Antisthenes and Diogenes were not cultural outcasts or marginal voices in classical culture; rather, the Cynic movement through the fourth century B.C. had deep and significant roots in what Desmond calls the Greek praise of poverty. Desmond demonstrates that classical views of wealth were complex and allowed for the admiration of poverty and the virtues it could inspire. He explains Cynicism s rise in popularity in the ancient world by exploring the set of attitudes that collectively formed the Greek praise of poverty. Desmond argues that in the fifth and fourth centuries B.C., economic, political, military, and philosophical thought contained explicit criticisms of wealth and praise of poverty. From an economic and political point of view, the poor majority at Athens and elsewhere were natural democrats who distrusted great concentrations of wealth as potentially oligarchical or tyrannical. In contemporary literature, the poor are those who do most of the necessary work and are honest, self-sufficient, and temperate.The rich, on the other hand, are idle, arrogant, and unjust. These perspectives were reinforced by the Greek experience of war and the belief that poverty fostered the virtues of courage, strength, and endurance. Finally, from an early date, Greek philosophers associated wisdom with the transcendence of sense experience and of conventional values such as wealth and honor. The Cynics, Desmond asserts, assimilated all of these ideas in creating their distinctive and radical brand of asceticism. Desmond s work is a compelling reevaluation of ancient Cynicism and its classical environment, one that makes an important contribution to scholarship of the classical and early Hellenistic periods. Codice libro della libreria AAV9780268025823

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Professor William Desmond
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Descrizione libro University of Notre Dame Press, United States, 2006. Paperback. Condizione libro: New. Annotated edition. Language: English . Brand New Book ***** Print on Demand *****.William Desmond, taking issue with common popular and scholarly views of the ancient Greek Cynics, contends that early Cynics like Antisthenes and Diogenes were not cultural outcasts or marginal voices in classical culture; rather, the Cynic movement through the fourth century B.C. had deep and significant roots in what Desmond calls the Greek praise of poverty. Desmond demonstrates that classical views of wealth were complex and allowed for the admiration of poverty and the virtues it could inspire. He explains Cynicism s rise in popularity in the ancient world by exploring the set of attitudes that collectively formed the Greek praise of poverty. Desmond argues that in the fifth and fourth centuries B.C., economic, political, military, and philosophical thought contained explicit criticisms of wealth and praise of poverty. From an economic and political point of view, the poor majority at Athens and elsewhere were natural democrats who distrusted great concentrations of wealth as potentially oligarchical or tyrannical. In contemporary literature, the poor are those who do most of the necessary work and are honest, self-sufficient, and temperate.The rich, on the other hand, are idle, arrogant, and unjust. These perspectives were reinforced by the Greek experience of war and the belief that poverty fostered the virtues of courage, strength, and endurance. Finally, from an early date, Greek philosophers associated wisdom with the transcendence of sense experience and of conventional values such as wealth and honor. The Cynics, Desmond asserts, assimilated all of these ideas in creating their distinctive and radical brand of asceticism. Desmond s work is a compelling reevaluation of ancient Cynicism and its classical environment, one that makes an important contribution to scholarship of the classical and early Hellenistic periods. Codice libro della libreria AAV9780268025823

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Descrizione libro University of Notre Dame Press. Paperback. Condizione libro: New. Paperback. 256 pages. Dimensions: 9.0in. x 5.9in. x 0.8in.William Desmond, taking issue with common popular and scholarly views of the ancient Greek Cynics, contends that early Cynics like Antisthenes and Diogenes were not cultural outcasts or marginal voices in classical culture; rather, the Cynic movement through the fourth century B. C. had deep and significant roots in what Desmond calls the Greek praise of poverty. Desmond demonstrates that classical views of wealth were complex and allowed for the admiration of poverty and the virtues it could inspire. He explains Cynicisms rise in popularity in the ancient world by exploring the set of attitudes that collectively formed the Greek praise of poverty. Desmond argues that in the fifth and fourth centuries B. C. , economic, political, military, and philosophical thought contained explicit criticisms of wealth and praise of poverty. From an economic and political point of view, the poor majority at Athens and elsewhere were natural democrats who distrusted great concentrations of wealth as potentially oligarchical or tyrannical. In contemporary literature, the poor are those who do most of the necessary work and are honest, self-sufficient, and temperate. The rich, on the other hand, are idle, arrogant, and unjust. These perspectives were reinforced by the Greek experience of war and the belief that poverty fostered the virtues of courage, strength, and endurance. Finally, from an early date, Greek philosophers associated wisdom with the transcendence of sense experience and of conventional values such as wealth and honor. The Cynics, Desmond asserts, assimilated all of these ideas in creating their distinctive and radical brand of asceticism. Desmonds work is a compelling reevaluation of ancient Cynicism and its classical environment, one that makes an important contribution to scholarship of the classical and early Hellenistic periods. This item ships from multiple locations. Your book may arrive from Roseburg,OR, La Vergne,TN. Paperback. Codice libro della libreria 9780268025823

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Descrizione libro University of Notre Dame Press, 2017. Paperback. Condizione libro: New. This item is printed on demand. Codice libro della libreria 0268025827

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