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HIST301: Greece, the Roman Republic, and the Roman Empire

Unit 5: The Rise of Macedon and the Hellenistic Period (c. 350–31 BCE)   In the mid-4th century BCE, the kingdom of Macedonia emerged as the most powerful state in the Eastern Mediterranean. Under the leadership of Philip II, Macedonian forces conquered numerous city-states in northern mainland Greece and established Macedon as the hegemonic power in Greece. Following Philip’s assassination in 336 BCE, his young son Alexander assumed the Macedonian throne and reasserted Macedonian control over mainland Greece. Once Alexander had secured control of the Greek city-states through political and military coercion, he turned his attention to the Persian Empire. In a series of decisive battles, Alexander’s forces defeated the Persians and extended Macedonian rule to central Asia and modern day Pakistan. By the time of his death in 323 BCE, Alexander the Great had created the largest empire in human history. Following Alexander’s death, his military commanders waged war against one another over control of his empire. Alexander’s successors eventually broke up this empire into smaller kingdoms, which were each ruled by dynasties descended from some of Alexander’s commanders – Antigonus (Macedon and Greece), Ptolemy (Egypt), and Seleucus (Western and Central Asia). These successor states continued to exert Greek influence over Western Asia and the Eastern Mediterranean through the end of the 1st century BCE. Egypt was the last of these kingdoms to fall under Roman rule in 31 BCE. In this unit, you will learn how Philip and Alexander expanded Macedonian rule and seized control over a vast empire, examine the successor kingdoms that emerged following Alexander’s death, and evaluate the interaction and cross fertilization of Greek culture and the ancient civilizations of Egypt and Western Asia in the Hellenistic period.

Unit 5 Time Advisory
Completing this unit should take you approximately 22.75hours.
 
Subunit 5.1: 3.5 hours
Subunit 5.2: 10 hours
Introduction: 1 hour
Subunit 5.2.1: 0.5 hours
Subunit 5.2.2: 1.5 hours
Subunit 5.2.3: 1 hour
Subunit 5.2.4: 1 hour
Subunit 5.2.5: 1 hour
Subunit 5.2.6: 1 hour
Subunit 5.2.7: 3 hours
Subunit 5.3: 5.25 hours
Subunit 5.4: 4 hours

Unit5 Learning Outcomes
Upon successful completion of this unit, you will be able to:
   - identify the events that led to Macedonia’s emergence as an empire that came to dominate the entire Hellenic world; - explain the conquest of Greece by Macedonia and the spread of Hellenistic culture by Alexander the Great; - assess the political, social, and cultural legacies of Alexander the Great’s military conquests in the Mediterranean basin and Western Asia; - compare and contrast the political and social structure of the Hellenistic successor states; and - analyze and interpret primary source documents from the period of classical antiquity using historical research methods.

5.1 Philip II and the Rise of Macedonia   - Reading: Oxford University Press: Dr. Sarah B. Pomeroy, et al.’s A Brief History of Ancient Greece: Politics, Society, and Culture: “Chapter 10: Philip II and the Rise of Macedon” Link: Oxford University Press: Dr. Sarah B. Pomeroy, et al. ’s A Brief History of Ancient Greece: Politics, Society, and Culture: ** “Chapter 10: Philip II and the Rise of Macedon” (HTML)
 
Instructions: Read the text for an account of how Philip II of Macedonia restored internal peace to his country, came to dominate Greece through military and diplomatic means, and laid the foundations for further expansion.
 
Reading this material and taking notes should take approximately 30 minutes. 
 
Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

  • Reading: Jona Lendering’s Livius.org: “Philip II of Macedonia”

    Link: Jona Lendering’s Livius.org: “Philip II of Macedonia” (HTML)
     
    Instructions: Read this text, proceeding through the links at the bottom of the page to parts 2, 3, and 4. Pay special attention to Philip’s military skills and his expansionist vision of Macedonian greatness. This reading depicts the diplomatic and military challenges faced by Philip. Focus especially on parts 3 and 4 of the reading, which provide important details of the strategy followed by Philip to create an army capable of achieving domination over Greece. 

    Reading this material and taking notes should take approximately 1 hour and 30 minutes. 

    Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

  • Lecture: YouTube: Yale University: Professor Donald Kagan’s CLCV 205: Introduction to Ancient Greek History: “Lecture 24: Twilight of the Polis (cont.)”

    Link: YouTube: Yale University: Professor Donald Kagan’s CLCV 205: Introduction to Ancient Greek History: “Lecture 24: Twilight of the Polis (cont.)” (YouTube)
     
    Also available in:
    Quicktime/mp3
    iTunes U
     
    Instructions: Watch this lecture in which Professor Kagan tells the story of the rise of Philip and identifies his early accomplishments: unifying Macedon; defeating barbarian armies; and creating a professional, national army. Pay special attention to Professor Kagan’s evaluation of Demosthenes’s actions, especially with regards to his defense of Athens.

    Watching the lecture and pausing to take notes should take approximately 1 hour and 30 minutes.

    Terms of Use: This resource is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License. It is attributed to Donald Kagan and Yale University, and the original version can be found here.

     

5.2 Alexander the Great   - Reading: Oxford University Press: Dr. Sarah B. Pomeroy, et al.’s A Brief History of Ancient Greece: Politics, Society, and Culture: “Chapter 11: Alexander the Great” Link: Oxford University Press: Dr. Sarah B. Pomeroy, et al.’s A Brief History of Ancient Greece: Politics, Society, and Culture: ** “Chapter 11: Alexander the Great” (HTML)
 
Instructions: Read this text for a description of the life of Alexander the Great, who overthrew the Persian Empire and carried Macedonian armies to India, laying the foundations for the Hellenistic world of territorial kingdoms. This reading also covers subunits 5.2.1–5.2.3.
 
Reading this material and taking notes should take approximately 30 minutes.
 
Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

  • Reading: Jona Lendering’s Livius.org: “Alexander the Great, Part 1: Youth” Link: Jona Lendering’s Livius.org: “Alexander the Great, Part 1: Youth” (HTML)
     
    Instructions: Read this text and all embedded links for an account of the early years of the man who would become a legendary hero.
     
    Reading this material and taking notes should take approximately 30 minutes.
     
    Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

5.2.1 Consolidating Power   - Reading: Jona Lendering’s Livius.org: “Alexander the Great, Part 2: Restoring Order in Greece” Link: Jona Lendering’s Livius.org: “Alexander the Great, Part 2: Restoring Order in Greece” (HTML)
 
Instructions: Read this text and all embedded links. This reading focuses on Alexander the Great’s most challenging tasks: to be recognized as his father’s true successor and to put down the rebellion of Greece after Athenian orator Demosthenes wrongly proclaimed Alexander’s death following the Illyrian campaign. Pay special attention to how these two challenges shaped Alexander’s political and military career.
 
Reading this material and taking notes should take approximately 30 minutes.
 
Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

5.2.2 The Conquest of the Eastern Mediterranean   - Reading: Jona Lendering’s Livius.org: “Alexander the Great, Part 3: Beginning of the Persian Campaign”, “Alexander the Great, Part 4: From Caria to Pamphylia”, “Alexander the Great, Part 5: The Anatolian Highland”, “Alexander the Great, Part 6: Issus”, “Alexander the Great, Part 7: The Conquest of the Levant”, and “Alexander the Great, Part 8: Son of Ammon” (HTML) Link: Jona Lendering’s Livius.org:
 
“Alexander the Great, Part 3: Beginning of the Persian Campaign” (HTML)
“Alexander the Great, Part 4: From Caria to Pamphylia” (HTML)
“Alexander the Great, Part 5: The Anatolian Highland” (HTML)
“Alexander the Great, Part 6: Issus” (HTML)
“Alexander the Great, Part 7: The Conquest of the Levant” (HTML)
“Alexander the Great, Part 8: Son of Ammon” (HTML)
 
Instructions: Read these texts and all embedded links. Trade in the old Greek world centered upon the Aegean and Eastern Mediterranean Seas. Alexander’s conquest of the Eastern Mediterranean was the first step towards a virtual world economy, which he would achieve a few years later with the conquest of the Persian Empire, thereby establishing trade links as far east as India and China.
 
Reading this material and taking notes should take approximately 1 hour and 30 minutes.
 
Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpages above.

5.2.3 The Conquest of the Persian Empire   - Reading: Jona Lendering’s Livius.org: “Alexander the Great, Part 9: Assyria and Babylonia” and “Alexander the Great, Part 10: The End of Persia” Link: Jona Lendering’s Livius.org: “Alexander the Great, Part 9: Assyria and Babylonia” (HTML) and “Alexander the Great, Part 10: The End of Persia” (HTML)
 
Instructions: Read these texts and all embedded links. Alexander had his first encounter with Persia while he was still a child, when he received the ambassadors of Persia in his father’s absence. Less than two decades later, Alexander would become the absolute monarch of the Persian Empire.
 
Reading this material and taking notes should take approximately 1 hour.
 
Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpages above.

5.2.4 The Conquest of Central Asia   - Reading: Jona Lendering’s Livius.org: “Alexander the Great, Part 11: King of Asia” Link: Jona Lendering’s Livius.org: “Alexander the Great, Part 11: King of Asia” (HTML)
 
Instructions: Read this text and all embedded links. Remember that Alexander’s campaign into Central Asia was the first major step in opening the Silk Road between the East and the West.
 
Reading this material and taking notes should take approximately 1 hour.
 
Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

5.2.5 The Indian Expedition   - Reading: Jona Lendering’s Livius.org: “Alexander the Great, Part 12: The Way to Dusty Death” and “Alexander the Great, Part 13: The Punjab” Link: Jona Lendering’s Livius.org: “Alexander the Great, Part 12: The Way to Dusty Death” (HTML) and “Alexander the Great, Part 13: The Punjab” (HTML)
 
Instructions: Read these texts and all embedded links. Remember that in Alexander’s time, India meant “the land of the Indus,” not exactly the area where the modern country of India stands. At this time, India referred to an area in western Pakistan – more specifically, the Punjab and Sind territories.
 
Reading this material and taking notes should take approximately 1 hour.
 
Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpages above.
 

5.2.6 The Return to the West   - Reading: Jona Lendering’s Livius.org: “Alexander the Great, Part 14: The Return” and “Alexander the Great, Part 15: Lord of All” Link: Jona Lendering’s Livius.org: “Alexander the Great, Part 14: The Return” (HTML) and “Alexander the Great, Part 15: Lord of All” (HTML)
 
Instructions: Read these texts and all embedded links. In the Persian Empire, Alexander was an absolute monarch; in Egypt he was worshiped as a god; and to the Greeks, he was a commander-in-chief. Pay special attention to Alexander’s attempts to unite his empire and to the description of how he modeled his entire government after Persian absolutism.
 
Reading this material and taking notes should take approximately 1 hour.
 
Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpages above.

5.2.7 The Death of Alexander   - Reading: Jona Lendering’s Livius.org: “Alexander the Great, Part 16: Death in Babylon” Link: Jona Lendering’s Livius.org: “Alexander the Great, Part 16: Death in Babylon” (HTML)
 
Instructions: Read this text and all embedded links. Although the political entity created by Alexander the Great failed to survive him, Alexander succeeded in creating a uniform Graeco-Oriental economic and cultural world that stretched from Gibraltar in the south of the Iberian Peninsula to the Indus River.
 
Reading this material and taking notes should take approximately 30 minutes.
 
Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

  • Reading: Massachusetts Institute of Technology: Daniel C. Stevenson’s Internet Classics Archive: John Dryden’s translation of Plutarch’s “Alexander” Link: Massachusetts Institute of Technology: Daniel C. Stevenson’s Internet Classics Archive: John Dryden’s translation of Plutarch’s Alexander (HTML)
     
    Also available in:
    PDF
     
    Instructions: Read this text. In this short biography, the Greek philosopher Plutarch (c. 100 CE) focuses on the life of Alexander the Great of Macedon. Plutarch discusses Alexander’s ancestry, his youth, and his preparations for his military conquests in Asia. He concludes with Alexander’s stunning victory over the Persians, in which he overthrew the vast Persian Empire. As a moralist, Plutarch was more interested in examining Alexander’s character than in providing a comprehensive historical account of Alexander’s reign. What, according to Plutarch, were Alexander’s virtues and vices?
     
    Reading this material and taking notes should take approximately 2 hours and 30 minutes.
     
    Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

5.3 Succession Struggles and Civil War in the Hellenistic World (325–150 BCE)   - Reading: Oxford University Press: Dr. Sarah B. Pomeroy, et al.’s A Brief History of Ancient Greece: Politics, Society, and Culture: “Chapter 12: The New World of the Hellenistic Period” Link: Oxford University Press: Dr. Sarah B. Pomeroy, et al.’s A Brief History of Ancient Greece: Politics, Society, and Culture: ** “Chapter 12: The New World of the Hellenistic Period” (HTML)
 
Instructions: Read this text and all embedded links for an overview of the Hellenistic world after the death of Alexander the Great, from a devastating series of succession wars to the emergence of new experimental Hellenistic art.
 
Reading this material and taking notes should take approximately 30 minutes.
 
Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

  • Reading: Jona Lendering’s Livius.org: “Alexander the Great, Part 17: Civil War”

    Link: Jona Lendering’s Livius.org: “Alexander the Great, Part 17: Civil War” (HTML)
     
    Instructions: Read this text and all embedded links. In 322 BCE, less than a year after Alexander the Great’s death, a civil war broke out between the Macedonians. This reading discusses the causes, main events, and consequences of this Civil War. Note that the title on the webpage reads “The Purple Testament of Bleeding War.”

    Reading this material and taking notes should take approximately 1 hour.

    Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

5.3.1 The Ptolemaic Kingdom in Egypt   - Reading: Jona Lendering’s Livius.org: “Ptolemy I Soter, Part 1: Early Career”, “Ptolemy I Soter, Part 2: Rise to Power”, “Ptolemy I Soter, Part 3: King of Egypt” and “Ptolemy I Soter, Part 4: Historian”

<span
style="font-family:&quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;">Link:
Jona Lendering’s Livius.org: </span>

[<span
style="font-family:&quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;">“Ptolemy
I Soter, Part 1: Early
Career”</span>](http://www.livius.org/ps-pz/ptolemies/ptolemy_i_soter.htm)<span
style="font-family:&quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;">
(HTML)</span>

[<span
style="font-family:&quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;">“Ptolemy
I Soter, Part 2: Rise to
Power”</span>](http://www.livius.org/ps-pz/ptolemies/ptolemy_i_soter2.html)<span
style="font-family:&quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;">
(HTML)</span>

[<span
style="font-family:&quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;">“Ptolemy
I Soter, Part 3: King of
Egypt”</span>](http://www.livius.org/ps-pz/ptolemies/ptolemy_i_soter3.html)<span
style="font-family:&quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;">
(HTML)</span>

[<span
style="font-family:&quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;">“Ptolemy
I Soter, Part 4:
Historian”</span>](http://www.livius.org/ps-pz/ptolemies/ptolemy_i_soter4.html)<span
style="font-family:&quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;">
(HTML)</span>

<span style="font-family: Arial, sans-serif;">Instructions: Read
these texts and all embedded links. The succession struggles and
civil wars described earlier precipitated the break-up of
Alexander’s empire. Beginning with Egypt, the present reading and
those which follow describe the political consequences of these
upheavals in various parts of the world. After the death of
Alexander III in 323 BCE, Palestine and vast areas of Syria and
Phoenicia fell to Ptolemy I (Soter), who established himself as
satrap in Egypt. The Ptolemaic Dynasty ruled Egypt for 300
years.</span>

<span style="font-family: Arial, sans-serif;">Reading this material
and taking notes should take approximately 1 hour and 30
minutes.</span>

<span
style="font-family:&quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;">Terms
of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on
the webpages above.</span>

5.3.2 The Seleucid Dynasty in Western Asia   - Reading: Jona Lendering’s Livius.org: “Alexander’s Successors: Lysimachus and Seleucus”, “Alexander’s Successors: Stabilization” and “The Seleucid Empire (Syria)”

<span
style="font-family:&quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;">Link:
Jona Lendering’s Livius.org:</span>

[<span
style="font-family:&quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;">“Alexander’s
Successors: Lysimachus and Seleucus, Part
1”</span>](http://www.livius.org/di-dn/diadochi/war10.html)<span
style="font-family:&quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;">
(HTML)</span>

[<span
style="font-family:&quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;">“Alexander’s
Successors:
Stabilization”</span>](http://www.livius.org/di-dn/diadochi/war11.html)<span
style="font-family:&quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;">
(HTML)</span>

[<span
style="font-family:&quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;">“The
Seleucid Empire
(Syria)”</span>](http://www.livius.org/se-sg/seleucids/seleucids.html)<span
style="font-family:&quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;">
(HTML)</span>

<span style="font-family: Arial, sans-serif;">Instructions: Read
this text and all embedded links. At its greatest, the Seleucid
Empire stretched from Thrace in Europe to the border of
India.</span>

<span style="font-family: Arial, sans-serif;">Reading this material
and taking notes should take approximately 1 hour.</span>

<span
style="font-family:&quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;">Terms
of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on
the webpages above.</span>

5.3.3 The Antigonid Dynasty in Macedonia   - Reading: The Saylor Foundation: “Antigonid Macedonia”, “Antigonas II Gonatas”, “Demetrius II and Antigonas III Doson” and “Philip V and Perseus: The Twilight of Antigonid Macedonia” Link: The Saylor Foundation:

 [“Antigonid
Macedonia”](http://www.saylor.org/site/wp-content/uploads/2013/02/HIST301-3.3.3-Antigonids-FINAL.pdf) (PDF)  
 [“Antigonas II
Gonatas”](http://www.saylor.org/site/wp-content/uploads/2013/02/HIST301-3.3.3-AntigonasGonatas-FINAL.pdf) (PDF)  
 [“Demetrius II and Antigonas III
Doson”](http://www.saylor.org/site/wp-content/uploads/2013/02/HIST301-3.3.3-DemtriusIIandAntigonasDoson-FINAL.pdf) (PDF)  
 [“Philip V and Perseus: The Twilight of Antigonid
Macedonia”](http://www.saylor.org/site/wp-content/uploads/2013/02/HIST301-3.3.3-PhilipVandPerseus-FINAL.pdf) (PDF)  
    
 Instructions: Read these articles. The descendants of Antigonus I
(one of Alexander the Great’s generals) formed the Antigonid
Dynasty. These articles describe later Macedonian conflicts with
neighboring states and its disastrous wars with Rome.  
    
 Reading this materials and taking notes should take approximately
30 minutes.  

 Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use
displayed on the webpages above.

5.3.4 The Achaean League versus the Aetolian League in Greece   - Reading: University of Chicago: Bill Thayer’s version of the Encyclopaedia Britannica’s “Achaean League” Link: University of Chicago: Bill Thayer’s version of the Encyclopaedia Britannica’s “Achaean League” (HTML)

 Instructions: Read this text and all embedded links. This reading
compares the Achaean League, a 3<sup>rd</sup>-century BCE
confederation of the towns of Achaea in ancient Greece, to the
Aetolian League, a federal state in ancient Greece that became one
of the leading military powers in Greece by c. 340 BCE. As in the
case of the preceding resource, this text ends with a description of
conflicts between the member states of the Achaean League and the
growing power of Rome.  
    
 Reading this material and taking notes should take approximately 30
minutes.  
    
 Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use
displayed on the webpage above.

5.3.5 Early Conflicts between Greeks and Romans   - Reading: University of Arizona: N. Lewis and M. Reinhold’s Roman Civilization Sourcebook I: The Republic: “The War with Pyrrhus, 280–279 B.C.”

<span
style="font-family:&quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;">Link:
University of Arizona: N. Lewis and M. Reinhold’s *Roman
Civilization Sourcebook I: The Republic<span
style="font-style: normal;">:</span> *</span>[<span
style="font-family:&quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;">“The
War with Pyrrhus , 280–279
B.C.”</span>](http://www.u.arizona.edu/~afutrell/survey/web%20readings/L%20&%20R%20I%2018.htm)<span
style="font-family:&quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;">
(HTML)  

 Instructions: The preceding resources have touched upon the growing
role Rome began to play by the 3<sup>rd</sup> century BCE in
mainland Greece affairs. However, the power of Rome was first felt
by the Greek cities of southern Italy, a region otherwise known as
Magna Graecia. Read this text, which describes one of the more
famous episodes from this conflict </span>– <span
style="font-family: Arial, sans-serif;">the expedition of the Greek
king Pyrrhus of Epirus to Italy in 280-79 BCE </span>– <span
style="font-family: Arial, sans-serif;">from the point of view of
two Roman historians. You will return to the subject of Magna
Graecia and the expansion of Rome in the next unit.</span>  

 <span style="font-family: Arial, sans-serif;">Reading this material
and taking notes should take approximately 15 minutes.</span>

<span
style="font-family:&quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;">Terms
of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on
the webpage above.</span>

5.4 Hellenistic Culture   5.4.1 Hellenistic Art and Architecture   - Reading: The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History: Collette Hemingway and Seán Hemingway’s “Art of the Hellenistic Age and the Hellenistic Tradition”

<span
style="font-family:&quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;">Link:
The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History:
Collette Hemingway and Seán Hemingway’s </span>[<span
style="font-family:&quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;">“Art of
the Hellenistic Age and the Hellenistic
Tradition”</span>](http://www.metmuseum.org/toah/hd/haht/hd_haht.htm)<span
style="font-family:&quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;">
(HTML)  
    
 Instructions: Read this text and the embedded links for an
introduction to Hellenistic art. After reading the text, click on
“View Slideshow” to see images of Hellenistic art. As noted by the
author, artists and architects of the Hellenistic era “copied and
adapted earlier styles,” but “also made great innovations.” What are
in fact some of the innovations the authors refer to in this
passage? Please review and compare also the images of the artworks
found here with the examples of classical era Greek art in subunit
2.1.4. Are there any particular differences in theme or style
between these two traditions that stand out in your mind? </span>

<span style="font-family: Arial, sans-serif;">Reading this material
and taking notes should take approximately 30 minutes.</span>  

 <span style="font-family: Arial, sans-serif;">Terms of Use: Please
respect the copyright and terms of use on the webpage displayed
above.</span>

5.4.2 Hellenistic Philosophical Schools: The Epicureans and Stoics   - Lecture: King’s College London: History of Philosophy without Any Gaps: Professor Peter Adamson’s “Am I Bothered?: Epicurean Ethics” Link: King's College London: History of Philosophy without Any Gaps: Professor Peter Adamson’s “Am I Bothered?: Epicurean Ethics” (HTML)
 
Instructions: Listen to this lecture, which provides an introduction to the thought of the Hellenistic age. As indicated above, this term is used by scholars to distinguish the political and cultural developments of this period from the classical world which came before. In this lecture, Professor Adamson provides a valuable overview of the ideas and principles espoused by the Epicurean philosophers, a school of Hellenistic thought that exerted a great influence on contemporary and succeeding generations of Greeks and Romans. As you listen to this podcast, give particular thought to what Epicurus had in common with his philosophical predecessors as well as the ways in which he departed from them. What, for example, does Professor Adamson consider to be some of the most novel features of Epicurean philosophy?
 
Watching the lecture and pausing to take notes should take approximately 30 minutes.
 
Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use on the webpage displayed above.

  • Reading: Ben R. Schneider, Jr.’s The Stoic Legacy to the Renaissance: John W. Basore’s translation of Lucius Annasus Seneca’s Moral Essays: “On Anger” Link: Ben R. Schneider, Jr.’sThe Stoic Legacy to the Renaissance: John W. Basore’s translation of Lucius Annasus Seneca’s Moral Essays: ** “On Anger” (HTML)

    Instructions: Read “To Novatus On Anger” Books I, II, and III (i.e., read all of Seneca’s discourse on anger). Moral Essays was composed by the Roman philosopher Seneca (1-65 CE). As indicated above, the philosophy of the Hellenistic age had a heavy influence on Roman culture. This was particularly true in the case of Stoic thought, a school of philosophy that developed alongside the Epicurean. Stoic philosophy enjoyed a great following among Roman elites and found a particularly famous acolyte in the figure of the emperor Marcus Aurelius. In this text from Seneca, you will encounter some famous attitudes of the Stoics toward emotion and especially anger (described by the author as perhaps the greatest of all human vices). Do you detect any similarities between the ideas represented here and those found in the survey of Epicurean thought above?
     
    Reading this material and taking notes should take approximately 2 hours.
     
    Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use on the webpage displayed above. 

  • Assessment: The Saylor Foundation’s “Units 4–5 Assessment” Link: The Saylor Foundation’s “Units 4–5 Assessment” (PDF)
     
    Instructions: Follow the instructions in the document linked above to complete this written assessment. When you are finished, check your work against the Saylor Foundation’s “Guide to Responding” (PDF).
     
    Completing this assessment should take approximately 1 hour.