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Titel: Xenophon's Retreat. Greece, Persia, and the ...
Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, Cambridge (Mass.), 2006. 1st ed. XIII,248p. Original half cloth with dust wrps. Nice copy. 'This is a time to be reading and teaching Xenophon, and not simply because of a recent wave of scholarly interest. Xenophon and the rest of the Greeks in the pretender Cyrus's army formed their ranks for the Battle of Cunaxa somewhere near the present location of Baghdad International Airport. Early plans for the current administration's invasion of Iraq included a program of infiltration with the code name 'Anabasis'. (What on earth were they thinking?) As America and Europe go over old ground in our struggle to keep and clarify core values in conflict with the Islamic world, it is worth remembering that, as Robin Waterfield reminds us, 'Orientalism . . . is the child of panhellenism' (p. 198). The Anabasis is a good place to begin understanding the Greek and thus Western way of inventing the East and defining ourselves through contrast, and sometimes conflict, with it. Waterfield's book is a good place to begin understanding the Anabasis. On the armature of Xenophon's narrative Waterfield sculpts a readable, accurate recounting of the Greek march up-country and the retreat after Cunaxa. Digressions on hoplite warfare and chapters on 'Greeks and Persians' and 'Xenophon and His Times' supply background and context for Cyrus's expedition and the Greek campaign and accommodate Waterfield's intended reader, who has only a sketchy knowledge of Greek history. (Those with more specialized knowledge may disagree on points like Waterfield's presentation of the shield signal at Marathon (p. 34) or the Peace or Peaces of Kallias (pp.56-57), but at no point will the naive reader be seriously misled, and, if he or she is curious, Waterfield has provided sound notes and an annotated bibliography.) Waterfield knows that Xenophon wrote the Anabasis some thirty years after the events that it describes, and he reads Xenophon's work as a story of gradual disillusionment with youthful hopes and as a counter to the panhellenist, aggressive propaganda of fourth-century authors and politicians like Isocrates (pp.206-208). I wish I had known this book when I read the Anabasis with my students in the fall of 2006. When I read it again in 2007, my students will learn much from Waterfield's accessible introduction.' (LEE T. PEARCY in Bryn Mawr Classical Review 2007.07.41). Antiquarian. Buchnummer des Verkäufers 35342
In The Expedition of Cyrus, the Western world's first eyewitness account of a military campaign, Xenophon told how, in 401 B.C., a band of unruly Greek mercenaries traveled east to fight for the Persian prince Cyrus the Younger in his attempt to wrest the throne of the mighty Persian empire from his brother.
With this first masterpiece of Western military history forming the backbone of his book, Robin Waterfield explores what remains unsaid and assumed in Xenophon's account?much about the gruesome nature of ancient battle and logistics, the lives of Greek and Persian soldiers, and questions of historical, political, and personal context, motivation, and conflicting agendas. The result is a rounded version of the story of Cyrus's ill-fated march and the Greeks' perilous retreat--a nuanced and dramatic perspective on a critical moment in history that may tell us as much about our present-day adventures in the Middle East, site of Cyrus's debacle and the last act of the Golden Age, as it does about the great powers of antiquity in a volatile period of transition.
Just as Xenophon brought the thrilling, appalling expedition to life, Waterfield evokes Xenophon himself as a man of his times?reflecting for all time invaluable truths about warfare, overweaning ambition, the pitfalls of power, and the march of history.
Über den Autor:
Robin Waterfield has recently published a new translation of Xenophon's Anabasis. He is also the author of Athens: A History and has translated works by Euripides, Plutarch, Herodotus, Aristotle,Plato, and
other works by Xenophon.
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