Herodotus: The Greek Struggle for Freedom

Date created: 
2014-12-12
Identifier: 
etd8749
Keywords: 
Herodotus
Freedom
Autonomy
Autocracy
Political systems
Stability
Abstract: 

The narrative that Herodotus offers in the Histories relates how and why Persia and Greece clashed in mighty conflicts over power. Throughout his narrative, Herodotus includes descriptions of clashes over freedom in societies in the ancient known world. Herodotus approaches the conflicts between political systems in autonomy and autocracy with a measured and objective tone. He illustrates how geography, climate, and culture affect the various political systems. The present analysis is based on M.H. Hansen’s nine principles of freedom in the classical Greek world and shows how Herodotus weaves the motif of freedom into his narrative in writing the Histories. Herodotus states that he makes a “display” of his “history” (research) to show the deeds of both Greeks and non-Greeks and to explain how they gain, maintain, and lose freedom, and why they wage war. The reason they clash turns out largely to do with their different approaches to freedom.

Document type: 
Thesis
Rights: 
Copyright remains with the author. The author granted permission for the file to be printed and for the text to be copied and pasted.
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
David Mirhady
Paul Dutton
Department: 
Arts and Social Sciences:
Thesis type: 
(Thesis) Master of Arts
Statistics: