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Author Topic: Greek Religion: A Sourcebook. Focus Classical Sources  (Read 1716 times) Average Rating: 0
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Religion: Lapsed Hellenic Reconstructionist
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« Topic Start: February 18, 2010, 08:49:51 pm »

Title: Greek Religion: A Sourcebook. Focus Classical Sources
Author(s): Valerie M. Warrior
Publisher: Newburyport, MA:  Focus Publishing, R. Pullins & Company
Publication Date: 2009
ISBN: 1585100315
Current Price and More Info from Amazon

From the Bryn Mawr Classic Review:
The task of compiling a primary source reader for the religion of the ancient Greeks is a daunting one. The disparate nature of our evidence, never mind the plethora of beliefs and practices throughout the Hellenic world, forces many hard choices on anyone who attempts to do so. Warrior has largely succeeded, however, in creating a noteworthy successor to the current standard, J. Stambaugh's venerable Sources for the Study of Greek Religion. Her attempt to form a "narrative of what the Greeks themselves said about their gods and their worship" guides the structure of the book as well as her choice to leave commentary to a minimum (pp. x-xi). This does not prevent Warrior from providing ample glosses that generally cover many questions which students with no prior exposure to the Greek world would likely have. The format will be immediately familiar to instructors who have used Warrior's sourcebook for Roman religion.1 The headings trace a path from the earliest sources on Greek religion in Hesiod and Homer to the mechanics of Greek religious practice in life during the historical period (i.e. family and community religious practice, prayer and sacrifice, divinations, the role of sanctuaries, festivals and competitions). The final chapters are devoted to challenges to traditional Greek religion, as well as sections on the practice of magic and witchcraft and a final section on "New Cults and New Gods." This approach removes the "jigsaw puzzle" (p. x) quality from the presentation of Greek religion. Right at the very beginning, the sourcebook's abridged presentation of the Theogony does an excellent job of laying out the narrative coherently by alternating passages with snippets of Hesiod's divine genealogy, illustrated in diagrams.2 This pattern of skillful abridgment supplemented by limited but choice commentary is a hallmark of the work.

Read the full review at the Bryn Mawr Classic Review web site.

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