Cambridge University Press (2004)

How were the Greeks of the sixth century BC able to invent philosophy and tragedy? In this book Richard Seaford argues that a large part of the answer can be found in another momentous development, the invention and rapid spread of coinage which produced the first ever thoroughly monetised society. By transforming social relations, monetisation contributed to the ideas of the universe as an impersonal system and of the individual alienated from his own kin and from the gods. Seaford argues that an important precondition for this monetisation was the Greek practice of animal sacrifice, as represented in Homeric Epic, which describes a premonetary world on the point of producing money. This book combines social history, economic anthropology, numismatics and the close reading of literary, inscriptional, and philosophical texts. Questioning the origins and shaping force of Greek philosophy, this is a major book with wide appeal.
Keywords Greek literature History and criticism  Money in literature  Greek drama (Tragedy History and criticism  Epic poetry, Greek History and criticism  Economics and literature  Economics in literature  Philosophy, Ancient  Money
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Reprint years 2006, 2009
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Call number PA3015.M64.S43 2004
ISBN(s) 9780511483080   9780521539920   0521539927   0521832284
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Monetisation and the Genesis of the Western Subject.Richard Seaford - 2012 - Historical Materialism 20 (1):78-102.

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