Coins, Bodies, Games, and Gold: The Politics of Meaning in Archaic Greece

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Overview

"Leslie Kurke's readings are always interesting, often simply brilliant. She does a superb job of presenting Herodotus as a locus for the preservation of the archaic debate. Highly innovative and well-documented, this book will be a model for future work in the broader field of historically grounded poetics."--Josiah Ober, Princeton University

"Leslie Kurke has written an original and exciting work that will refine our understanding and pique our interest in ancient metals and money. This book raises gripping questions about important ancient practices and ideologies and offers a powerful argument for using both positivistic and theoretical approaches to ancient material. Coins, Bodies, Games, and Gold will give classicists much to ponder and argue about; cultural historians and comparatists in other fields, too, should read this book."--Deborah Boedecker, Center for Hellenic Studies and Brown University

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Editorial Reviews

Journal of Economic Issues - L. Randall Wray
Eminently engaging . . . This is an important, fascinating book that should not be ignored by any monetary theorist.
American Historical Review - Sue Blundell
Kurke's book is lucidly and coherently written. . . . Even if we cannot unreservedly sign up to Kurke's thesis, we still feel that we have learned a great deal in following its progress.
From the Publisher

"An excellent monograph on several aspects of the varied culture of ancient Greece. Scholars and graduate students will applaud her study. . . ."--Choice

"Eminently engaging . . . This is an important, fascinating book that should not be ignored by any monetary theorist."--L. Randall Wray, Journal of Economic Issues

"Kurke's book is lucidly and coherently written. . . . Even if we cannot unreservedly sign up to Kurke's thesis, we still feel that we have learned a great deal in following its progress."--Sue Blundell, American Historical Review

Choice
An excellent monograph on several aspects of the varied culture of ancient Greece. Scholars and graduate students will applaud her study. . . .
Journal of Economic Issues
Eminently engaging . . . This is an important, fascinating book that should not be ignored by any monetary theorist.
— L. Randall Wray
American Historical Review
Kurke's book is lucidly and coherently written. . . . Even if we cannot unreservedly sign up to Kurke's thesis, we still feel that we have learned a great deal in following its progress.
— Sue Blundell
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780691007366
  • Publisher: Princeton University Press
  • Publication date: 8/9/1999
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 368
  • Product dimensions: 9.10 (w) x 6.10 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Table of Contents


Illustrations ix
Preface xi
Acknowledgments xiii
Abbreviations xvii
Introduction Toward an Imaginary History of Coinage 3
I. What Is Coinage for? Numismatic and Historical Debates 6
II. Literary Methodology 23
III. The Structure of the Argument 32
PART ONE: DISCOURSES
Chapter One The Language of Metals 41
I. Forging the Language of Metals 45
II. Metals and Others in Herodotus 60
Chapter Two Tyrants and Transgression: Darius and Amasis 65
I. Darius and the Daric 68
II. Darius Kapelos 80
III. Amasis the Vulgar Tyrant 89
Chapter Three Counterfeiting and Gift Exchange: The Fate of Polykrates 101
I. Counterfeiting and Violated Exchange 101
II. Cosmic Reciprocity ill
III. Gift Exchange as Civic Violence 121
Chapter Four Kroisos and the Oracular Economy 130
I. Kroisos in Epinikion 131
II. Gift Exchange, the Grotesque Body, and the Civic Norm 142
III. Competing Economies, Competing Epiphanies 152
IV. Lydians and Ludopatheis: The Gap between History and Ethnography 165
PART TWO: PRACTICES
Chapter Five The Hetaira and the Porne 175
I. Inventing the Hetaira 178
II. The Porne and the Public Sphere 187
III. Ideological Faultlines 199
Chapter Six Herodotus's Traffic in Women 220
I. Herodotean Pressure: Destabilizing the Terms 220
II. Herodotean Alternatives: Reimagining the Public Sphere 227
Chapter Seven Games People Play 247
I. Games and Other Symbolic Systems 248
II. Pessoi: The Mediation of the Game Board 254
III. Aristocratic Games: Embodiment, Chance, and Ordeal 275
IV. Herodotean Games 295
Chapter Eight Minting Citizens 299
I. The Two Sides of the Coin: Materiality as Ideology 301
II. Coins Are Good to Think with 316
III. Changing the Currency 328
Conclusion Ideology, Objects, and Subjects 332
Bibliography 337
Index Locorum 365
General Index 373
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