Policing Athens: Social Control in the Attic Lawsuits, by Virginia J. Hunter

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By Virginia J. Hunter

From loved ones gossip to public beatings, this social heritage explores the various channels by which Athenians maintained public order. Virginia Hunter attracts totally on Attic courtroom lawsuits, which allowed for quite a lot of facts, together with universal rumors a couple of defendant's personality and testimony, got below torture, of slaves opposed to their masters. She describes Athenian "policing" as a kind of social regulate that happened throughout a number deepest and public degrees. not just does policing seem to have been a collective company, yet its tools have been embedded in a number of social associations, leading to the blurring of the road among kingdom and society. Hunter's inquiry into subject matters corresponding to family authority, disputes between kinfolk, the presence of slaves in the home, gossip in the house and local, and varieties of public punishment unearths a continuum extending from self-regulation between relatives to punitive activities enforced by means of the country. spotting the prejudice of criminal records towards the rich, Hunter concentrates on exposing the voices of the fewer robust and no more privileged contributors of society, together with ladies and slaves. In so doing she is without doubt one of the first to handle systematically such very important concerns because the authority of girls, self-help, and corporal punishment.

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26; Harrison, 1968:59 and 113). In this way, through a daughter, the inheritance passed from grandfather to grandson, who should ideally also succeed him as his adopted son and so continue his line. This transfer represents a kind of closure for the epikleros herself, who, without father, brothers, or paternal grandfather, had no natural kyrios alive. That role, which had for a time been fulfilled by the man who claimed and married her (Dem. 18 In practice, what were the responsibilities of a husband to his wife as his dependent?

Hence, the household he describes centers on his wife and her therapaina and the couple’s newborn child. Euphiletus is at pains to emphasize the autonomy and responsibilty he allowed his young wife once the child was born (6). Menander offers a somewhat fuller picture of life in the oikos. In The Rape of the Locks, for example, Myrrhine, the adoptive mother of the hero Moschion, allows her neighbor, Glycera, to take refuge in her house from the man with whom she is living. Her son, who fancies he is in love with Glycera, plots with his slave, Davus, to take advantage of her.

Thompson, 1981). Here possession and use approached full ownership of private property, since the individual had unrestricted power of disposal. To be kyrios then implies not only trusteeship, possession, and use but can in some cases amount to virtual ownership, leaving the institution fraught with ambiguity. WOMEN AND THE KINSHIP STRUCTURE The issue to which I shall turn next is the place of women in the kinship structure. For the rights and obligations of kin are pertinent to the question of domestic power.

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