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Ancient Greece Declassified

The podcast that transports you to the ancient world and back, with some good conversation along the way. It's not just about ancient Greece. It's about a huge chunk of human history that the Greek texts give us access to: from Egypt and Babylon, to ancient Persia, to Carthage and Rome, we'll sail the wine-dark sea of history with some expert guides at the helm. Topics include archaeology, literature, and philosophy. New episode every month.
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Now displaying: 2019
Apr 13, 2019

The oldest Roman epics we have were produced during the Roman Empire. But before becoming an empire, Rome was a powerful republic for hundreds of years. What happened to the Roman epics from the republican period?

In this episode, we examine the evidence from this fascinating yet elusive early period, when Rome was a powerful Republic, but there were still other powerful states around, all competing for cultural prestige. Our guest on the show is someone who has spent years studying the early fragments as well as the later complete epics of the empire.

Rhiannon Evans lectures in Classics and Ancient History at La Trobe University in Melbourne, Australia. She is also a veteran podcaster, being one of the lead voices on the Emperors of Rome podcast, and has published several of her lecture series as free podcasts as well.

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The intro to this episode was provided by Brandon Huebner of the Maritime History Podcast, a show exploring the major naval powers of history and how their destinies were shaped by the sea. Check out the Maritime History Podcast on your podcast app of click here.

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Mar 22, 2019

Hesiod's didactic epic Works and Days is probably most famous for containing the stories of Prometheus and Pandora. But these tales are part of a greater mission of explaining how one can live justly and succeed in a harsh world.

Our guest today is widely recognized as having produced the best translation of the Works and Days into English. Alicia Stallings is an acclaimed poet, author, McArthur fellow, and translator of Hesiod and of Lucretius. If you would like to read the Works and Days, get yourself a copy of her translation.

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The intro to this episode was provided by Derek of The Hellenistic Age Podcast, a show exploring the vast arena of cultures impacted by the conquests of Alexander the Great. Check out The Hellenistic Age Podcast on your podcast app or click here.

Feb 22, 2019

Hundreds of city-states in the ancient world experimented with democracy. Most of them experienced some kind of civil strife at some point. What caused these breakdowns of social order, and are we headed towards a similar fate?

In this episode we explore the phenomenon of political polarization (stasis in Greek), its causes, and the solutions that ancient thinkers offered to prevent it from happing. Our guest is Melissa Lane, Professor of Politics and associated faculty of Philosophy and Classics at Princeton University, where she is also the director of the University Center for Human Values. Her most recent book is The Birth of Politics: Eight Greek and Roman Political Ideas and Why they Matter.

BOOK GIVEAWAY: To win a copy of The Birth of Politics, autographed by Melissa Lane, go to our Facebook page and share our latest post announcing this episode. Then, from our page, send us a message with the word "shared." On March 10 we will randomly select a winner.

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The intro to this episode was provided by Nitin Sil of the Flash Point History podcast, a show that has done epic series on Attila the Hun and the Punic Wars. Check out Flash Point History on your podcast app or click here.

Jan 3, 2019

At a time when kings and emperors ruled the world, the Founding Fathers of the US were striving to resurrect a millennia-old dream: that of a free republic. Drawing inspiration from ancient Athens, the Roman Republic, and Carthage, they helped craft a society that was at once radically new and rooted in antiquity.

Joining us to explore the influence of classical models on early American history is Caroline Winterer, professor of American History and of Classics at Stanford University and director of Stanford's Center for Humanities. Winterer is the author of American Enlightenments: Pursuing Happiness in the Age of Reason and of The Mirror of Antiquity: American Women and the Classical Tradition, 1750–1900 among many other books and articles exploring the connections between antiquity and the early American experience.

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The intro to this episode was provided by hosts Bry and Fry of the Pontifacts podcast, offering a humorous history of the papacy from Peter to Pope Francis. Check out their show here!

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