About This Chapter
Hellenism and the Athenian Achievement
The Athenian democracy was a vastly different system than what we think of democracies today. Political representatives were really limited in their job duties because the people had all the say in making choices for whatever the government did. Then entered Hellenism and there was an abrupt change for the people of Athens to a new Greek system. As you will learn through the video lessons, the change from the Athenian democracy to Hellenism was quite drastic. Some of the topics covered in this chapter include:
- Athenian democracy
- Greek theatre
- Platonic idealism
|Athenian Democracy: Solon and Cleisthenes||Review the key political and social reforms of Solon and Cleisthenes.|
|Pericles, the Delian League, and the Athenian Golden Age||Learn about the traits of Periklean Athens.|
|Greek Theatre: Tragedy and Comedy||Take a look at the different styles of Greek theatre during this time.|
|Peloponnesian War and Thucydides||Review the history and aftermath of the Peloponnesian War.|
|Socrates: Life, Death and Philosophy||Explore the life and lasting impact of this famous philosopher.|
|Platonic Idealism: Plato and His Influence||Learn about the concepts central to Plato's philosophy.|
|Aristotelian Logic: Aristotle's Central Concepts and Influence||Dig into the core facets of Aristotle's philosophy.|
|Alexander the Great and the Birth of Hellenism||Explore the achievements and legacy of Alexander the Great.|
|The Library of Alexandria & The Benefits of Hellenization||Learn about the headquarters of the world's scholarship.|
1. Athenian Democracy: Solon and Cleisthenes
Although Athens is remembered for creating the first democracy, it took many years and multiple leaders to develop the system we think of today. Learn about who took control, what reforms they made and how the people revolted against the old system.
2. Pericles, the Delian League, and the Athenian Golden Age
This lecture covers the formation of the Delian League, its development into the Athenian Empire and the peculiar place of Pericles in the midst of it all, turning the city of Athens into the seat of an empire.
3. Greek Theatre: Tragedy and Comedy
This lecture examines the function of theatre in Greek culture and religion, with special focus on the Athenians. It then explores the three different sorts of Greek theatre: satyr plays, comedy and tragedy, citing specific examples. Finally, we study the impact of theatre on Western civilization.
4. Peloponnesian War and Thucydides
This lecture covers the Peloponnesian War. First we enumerate the causes of the war. Then we examine Pericles' plan to win it. We see how Pericles' plan eventually fell apart and how the Athenians struggled without leadership until their eventual destruction at the hands of the Spartans.
5. Socrates: Life, Death and Philosophy
This lecture is a whirlwind tour through the life of Socrates. It begins with an explanation of the Socratic problem, followed by an examination of his philosophy. The lecture ends with a summary of Socrates' legacy.
6. Platonic Idealism: Plato and His Influence
This lecture examines the philosophy and legacy of Plato. It covers the Allegory of the Cave, the Realm of Forms and Plato's views on politics and the soul. Finally, it shows Plato's enduring legacy in modern science.
7. Aristotelian Logic: Aristotle's Central Concepts and Influence
This lesson will explore the life of the famous philosopher Aristotle. It will highlight his life in Northern Greece and Athens, as well as his interactions with Alexander the Great. It will also explain the main tenants of Aristotelian logic.
8. Alexander the Great and the Birth of Hellenism
This lesson describes Alexander the Great's mighty empire. Beginning with a brief account of his father Philip, the lecture then turns to an enumeration of Alexander's conquests. Next, Alexander's methods are explored. Finally, we will discuss Alexander's legacy of Hellenization.
9. The Library of Alexandria & The Benefits of Hellenization
This lecture begins by examining the spread of the Greek language and alphabet during the Hellenistic period and noting the implications of a universal language. Next we look at four factors that combined to make Alexandria the heart of Hellenistic scholarship: common language, a convenient alphabet, papyrus and climate.
10. Schools of Philosophy in Antiquity: Cynics, Epicureans & Stoics
In this lesson, we will study three schools of philosophy in antiquity: the Cynics, the Epicureans, and the Stoics. We will discuss the founder of each school, as well as its major characteristics.
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Other chapters within the History 101: Western Civilization I course
- History of Ancient Greece
- The Rise of the Roman Republic
- The Fall of the Roman Empire
- The Dark Ages
- The Early Middle Ages
- The Medieval Warm Period
- The High Middle Ages
- The Late Middle Ages
- The Renaissance
- The Age of Exploration
- The Reformation
- The Elizabethan Era
- Studying for History 101