[[ Ebook ]] ↜ The Class Struggle in the Ancient Greek World: From the Archaic Age to the Arab Conquests ↟ PDF eBook or Kindle ePUB free

Two parts first part is theoretical, working out the application of specific Marxist concepts to specific items of the ancient world Second section is historical presentation using the concepts as worked out in part I Historical argument gets into Eastern Empire a bit, but for the most part ends with the destruction of the Western Empire, attributed to the slave economy Text is pretty much the best example of rigor that I know, and it is difficult to overstate its value. [[ Ebook ]] ⇻ The Class Struggle in the Ancient Greek World: From the Archaic Age to the Arab Conquests ☠ Jerome Was To Medieval Biblical And Historical Scholarship What His Contemporary Augustine Was To Medieval Theology A Founding Father Whose Works Were Revered For Centuries His Knowledge Of Greek And Hebrew Equipped Him To Produce The Vulgate, The Latin Version That Was The Official Bible Of The Catholic Church Until Recent Decades Jerome S Biblical Commentaries Blended The Insights Of Earlier Writers With His Own Contributions His Translations And Expansions Of Some Of The Works Of Eusebius Put All Subsequent Church Historians In His Debt A Beautifully Written Book, Its Text Marked By Clarity Of Thought And Elegance Of Expression, Wide Ranging In Its Learning, Yet Delicately Worked And Immensely Readable ED Hunt, Journal Of Roman Studies A Superb Biography So Readable That It Is Easy To Forget That Practically Every Sentence Is The Fruit Of Research WHC Frend, New York Review Of Books A Masterpiece Of Scholarship Sunday Telegraph G.E.M De Ste Croix s magisterial historical materialist history of the Greco Roman world spans nearly fourteen hundred years of history beginning with the Archaic Age c 700 B.C and ending with the Arab conquests of the Greek Near East, Asia Minor and North Africa By seeking to understand how issues of class, exploitation and property relations functioned and perpetuated themselves De Ste Croix attempts to explain the vast social changes that occurred over the broad expanse of Classical history The book thus divides itself into two units of four chapters each, the first dealing with theoretical issues behind how classes and economic relationships functioned during the period under investigation, and the second providing achronological narrative of the major events and social changes that occurred over that span of time.Class, for De Ste Croix and for Marx and Engels, is a social relationship not only to the means of production but one between classes a relationship based on exploitation With the development of urban civilization certain members of society take on other roles besides that of economic i.e agricultural producers and these individuals administrators, soldiers, educators, artists and scientists must thus be maintained by the labor of the producers in order to fulfill their specialized functions Exploitation then is the extraction of this surplus labor from one class to the other Considering the limited surplus the technologically primitive nature of classical economic production was able to produce, Greco Roman civilization would have been impossible without this exploitation, which took place between the propertied primarily in land and non propertied classes Exploitation during this era is divided by the author into direct individual and indirect collective forms The former rendered from individual to individual touched upon slaves, serfs, debtors, tenants and wage laborers, while the latter exacted by the state from individuals or a whole community involved taxation, military conscription and compulsory services These class divisions also corresponded to a separation of society into the polis the urban city and its neighboring chora the agricultural areas and their corresponding villages , with the latter being exploited by the propertied members of the former While in ancient Greece, polis and chora shared the same culture, in the colonized East the cities were made up of the Greek elite and the indigenous but deeply Hellenized upper classes while the chora was made of poor native populations who did not share in Greek culture.One of the book s central arguments is that while the vast majority of production in the ancient Greek world was done by free producers small peasants, primarily, but also artisans and traders who formed the majority of the population until the great increase in state exploitation circa 300 A.D , the ruling class extracted most of its surplus from the exploitation of unfree labor in the forms of slavery, serfdom and debt bondage In the words of the author, the most significant distinguishing feature of each mode of production , is not so much how the bulk of the labour production is done, as how the dominant propertied classes, controlling the conditions of production ensure the extraction of the surplus which makes their own leisured existence possible There was no bourgeoisie or petit bourgeois then existing to any significant degree beyond the subsistence level Any merchant who managed to become financially successful would use his new found wealth to retire and buy land which was deemed necessary in order to achieve wealth, status and political power Wage laborers were rare and were thought of as little better than slaves.I suspect that for most readers the most fascinating chapters will be the historical analyses which make up the second half of the book rather than the earlier theoretical ones Part Two takes us through the Archaic Age displacement of the king and his hereditary aristocracy by the tyrant most likely propped up by a city s hoplites as Wealth overtook Nobility as the new true source of power the pursuant overthrow of the tyrant by the poorer commoners the glorious birth of Greek democracy, lead by Athens, which allowed all male citizens to rule directly, empowering peasants and artisans to defend themselves against previous levels of exploitation, and the tragic defeat of Greek democracy by the Greek propertied class in alliance with Macedonia and then Rome Whileconcerned with the Greek East than with the Latin West the author also analyzes the journey that lead Rome to become mistress of much of the known world The conflict between patrician and plebeian within the context of a system of patronage clientship and territorial expansion the impoverishment of the citizens, growth of slave estates and the decline of the peasantry and the development of a split among the Roman ruling class which lead to the rise of the reformist populares, the conservative optimates and a series of catastrophic civil wars which lead to the rise of Augustus Caesar one of the ablest political figures known to human history and the Principate In other of the book s segments, De Ste Croix fruitfully compares Aristotles political sociology to that of Marx, investigates the role of propaganda in the class struggle, and later studies the impact of Christianity on the Greco Roman world.The most famous argument in this book in undoubtedly De Ste Croix s Marxist interpretation of the decline and fall of the Roman Empire As Rome s massive territorial expansion began necessarily to slow down a marked decrease in the number of wars bringing in large slave hauls followed The propertied class in turn turned to slave breeding but this was found to be financially prohibitive as it required a great increase in the purchase of female slaves, many of whom could be expected to die in childbirth Since the surplus labor extracted by the propertied classes derived ultimately from unfree labor, the decline in the availability of slaves lead to a significant crisis The Roman Empire responded by intensifying exploitation of the free population, legally turning free peasants into serfs people enslaved to the land , vastly increasing taxation on all but the very wealthy, expanding the two tiered justice system for the upper and lower classes and introducing legal torture and flogging to larger segments of the population, with not even the lower levels of the propertied classes immune from increased subjection The results were a number of peasant revolts the Bacaudae mentioned by various ancient sources and a series of popular defections and instances of co operation with the barbarian invaders who were thus allowed to eventually conquer most of the Roman Empire Among the defectors and collaborators could sometimes be found Christian minority sects seeking to flee the chastisement of the orthodox Catholic Church As the author summarizes his conclusion, It was, I suggest, the combination of unlimited economic power and political power in the hands of the propertied class, their emperor and his administration which ultimately brought about the disintegration of the Roman empire Athoughtful, comprehensive and illuminating study of a civilization could not be asked for. The most comprehensive and best book on the Ancient World from a Marxist scholar St Croix s book takes into account the political struggles between sections of the ruling class, struggles of slaves against thier condition and struggles of other oppressed groups like women and small farmers Unlike historians from the history from below school of thought he gives complete view of Greek and Roman societies while still shedding light on the little known struggles of ordinary people The beginning of the book has a discussion on class that is essential St Croix shows the primacy of the relations of production in determining the type of society in question He brings this up in a debate with ancient scholars who say that Marx s idea that these societies were slave societies is gravely mistaken St Croix arguments on this score are essential for understanding Greek and Roman societies in particular and for understanding the Marxist concept of class society in general. You don t know shit about the Classical Greco Roman World until you ve read this book Forget the rest. This brilliant book was my first and the last for now suggestion for Turkish translation ten years ago I am really proud of that one of my friends, a da S mer did it perfectly But the biggest applause is for Ste Croix In this book, he investigates the Classical, Hellenistic and Greco Roman era with a Marxist class struggle approach and deep literary knowledge As he often mentions in the book, whether slavery paid labor is the primarily production style or not for the mentioned historical period, the main determinant and discussion topic is which style provides the most surplus for its beneficiaries.By the way, before this book, you really should read Plato, Aristotle and Cicero at least for some information about the Classical era political atmosphere. Brilliant analysis with many direct applications to modern world, e.g the preference of the 1% for allowing the state and their society s social structure to decay rather than pay taxes themselves. Compelling perspective, dry read. Quite interesting Way ahead of his time in terms of historical research