The Role Of The Persian Ethnography (1.131-40) In Herodotus

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Abstract
This thesis explores the role that the Persian ethnography plays in Herodotus' Histories by focusing on the relationship between the Persian characters in the historical narrative and the ethnographic passage describing the Persians (1.131-40). First, the Persian ethnography itself is examined, and then the main Persian characters are assessed. By drawing on key examples from the extensive appendix, which lists the actions of each Persian character, my paper aims to analyze the role that the ethnography plays in the depiction of the individual in Herodotus' text. When we use the ethnography as a framework for thinking about the Persian characters, a few patterns emerge from the analysis: those who wield absolute power tend to violate Persian customs and are presented unfavorably, while those who largely uphold the Persian values and practices of the ethnographic passage are more favorably depicted by Herodotus. A brief comparison between the network of Persian character-ethnography relationships and that of the Scythians and Egyptians shows that this is a feature unique to the Persians in the Histories. i
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2014-08-18
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Herodotus; ethnography; Persian
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Fontaine, Michael Scott
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Pelliccia, Hayden Newhall
Ahl, Frederick M
Degree Discipline
Classics
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M.A., Classics
Degree Level
Master of Arts
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Government Document
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dissertation or thesis
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