What words and deeds are expressed in the process of mourning and what does that mean for the polis and for citizenship?

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What words and deeds are expressed in the process of mourning and what does that mean for the polis and for citizenship?

Supposing for the sake of argument that the Athenians lose the war because they become realists is this itself an argument against political realism? What various values would political realism have to contend with in order to account for the defeat of Athens as a democracy?

 

Thucydides’s History of the Peloponnesian War Second Reading Response.

Choose one of the following questions.

(1200-1500 words=6 pages double spaced 12pt) (20%):

In our reading of History of the Peloponnesian War we have interpreted Thucydides’ portrayal of Pericles as an “epic hero” of practical wisdom (phronesis). But Thucydides’ account also suggests the limits of the Periclean example. Do you find Pericles to indeed be a heroic figure or would you argue that he is instead a tragic one i.e. one whose fate is determined by inevitable conflicts? Use examples from the text to support your argument you should consider both the words actions and intended consequences of his speeches

Consider how death grieving and mourning are central concerns for political meaning and notions of democratic citizenship. How and why do mourning and death provide a lens onto Athenian democracy in Thucydides’s History of the Peloponnesian War. You may wish to consider when and how by and for whom grieving takes place and to what ends? What words and deeds are expressed in the process of mourning and what does that mean for the polis and for citizenship?

Thucydides’s History of the Peloponnesian War is often considered to be a founding text the realist school of political philosophy. A realist perspective would argue that states are self-interested power-seeking rational actors motivated to maximize their security and uphold their existing power for their own survival.

Supposing for the sake of argument that the Athenians lose the war because they become realists is this itself an argument against political realism? What various values would political realism have to contend with in order to account for the defeat of Athens as a democracy?

Use the various speeches of Pericles Cleon Nicias and Alcibiades to answer this question. Consider how fear and self-image may function within the dialogues as a potential critique of realism.

Be sure to support your argument with direct references from the text.

 

Rubric: you will be assessed on the following:

Argument: The student makes a clear argument from the outset of the paper develops this argument using supporting evidence and makes a case for why this argument should be compelling.

Textual Analysis: The student demonstrates a command of the text and references relevant passages that support their interpretation.

Style: Clear and concise sentences; few grammatical errors; referenced text is cited consistently.