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Title: Astenia del mito e dinamismo della gnome
Subtitle: La crisi dell'Hellenikon in due discorsi de La guerra del Peloponneso
Author(s): CASERTA, Cristiana
Journal: Ancient Society
Volume: 35    Date: 2005   
Pages: 79-100
DOI: 10.2143/AS.35.0.2003842

Abstract :
Just as the Jewish past was historicised by the message of the gospel, so in the Athens of Perikles the past of Greece is reduced to a preliminary stage preparing the greatness and power of the city in the present. It is not criticised or condemned, but has lost its meaning for contemporaries. Though not completely obliterated, it is remembered as distant and foreign. Historical memory can indeed bring some events to the fore and relegate others to the background. The present as it is constructed in Thucydides’ history (i.e. the events of the Peloponnesian War) clearly shows that the past is no longer normative. This renunciation brings along with it a crisis of Hellenic self-consciousness, which could no longer be defined, as in Herodotus, in terms of a geopolitical partition of the world legitimised by myth.

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