Summary and Info
This excellent work recounts the history of views on Athens and democracy over history, with a reminder of just how recently our good opinion of democracy, and therefore of Athens, resurfaces as an aspect of modernism. This change occurring during the rise of the modern, and not really complete til the nineteenth century,at best, is a world historical change of paradigm that reversed the crypto-Platonic authoritarianism of the long millennia after the waning of the great Classical flowering in the onset of the Hellenistic. This restoration requires close study of the still ambivalent views even of many of our great early modern thinkers, and is seen in Rousseau's preoccupation with the Spartans. This work highlights an essential understanding required to understand not only the Greeks but the rise of modern democracy.