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Talk about "Barbarians" in Antiquity

Talk about "Barbarians" in Antiquity learnsomething"(KwasiWiredu,Cultural Universals and Particulars: An African Perspective[Bloomington:IndianaUniversityPress,1996],p.153). 4­Obeyesekerearguedthataperceiver'sembeddednessinculturedoesnot"ren der discrimination impossible" (Gananath Obeyesekere, The Apotheosis of Captain Cook: European Mythmaking in the Pacific[Princeton:PrincetonUniversityPress,1992],p.21);Sahlinscounteredwith"differentcultures,different rationalities" hattoassumea"commonsensebourgeoisrealism"wastoretro--t activelyimposetheEnlightenmentviewofrationalitybroughtbyCook(Marshall DavidSahlins, How `Natives' Think: About Captain Cook, for Example[Chicago: UniversityofChicagoPress,1995],p.14).JohnCharlotstressesthat,whilein classical Hawaiian thought there was no "dualism between the material and i material,"thisdidnotattenuatetheautonomyofreasonincontemplatingand m modifyingtheworld( ohnCharlot,Classical Hawaiian Education: Generations J of Hawaiian Culture[L`ie,HI:ThePacificInstitute,BrighamYoungUniversity, 2005],p.90).Inthefullestcontemporaryreconstructionofkanaka maoliphilosophy,ManulaniAluliMeyerengagespragmatismandempiricismtodiscover "fundamental principles of knowing," which include "instinctive, innate or a cestralknowledge"(ManulaniAluliMeyer,Ho`oulu: Our Time of Becoming: n Hawaiian Epistemology and Early Writings[Honolulu:`AiPhakuPress,2003], p. 78) as part of a "triangulation of meaning" (see Meyer, "Indigenous and A thentic:HawaiianEpistemologyandtheTriangulationofMeaning,"inHandu book of Critical and Indigenous Methodologies,ed.NormanK.Denzin,Yvonna S.Lincoln,andLindaTuhiwaiSmith[LosAngeles:SagePublications,2008],pp. 217­233). Michael Nylan HistoryDepartment,UniversityofCaliforniaatBerkeley Rethinking the Other in Antiquity.ByErichS.Gruen.Princeton:PrincetonUniversity Press,2011.Pp.xiv+415. AnewbookinthefieldofGreekandRomanClassicshasimportantimplicationsfor serious students of early and middle-period China as well.1 As its title suggests, Rethinking the Other in AntiquitybyErichS.Gruencallsintoquestiononeofthe reigningparadigmsusedbyhistoriansoftheclassicalera,2askingwhetherscholars havenotbeenover-eagertoretrojectpostcolonialnotionsoftheOther(thedisparaged,disdained,demonized,andevensubhuman)3ontotheantiqueworld.Tobe clearattheoutset:Gruen'sbookdoesnotofferablanketcondemnationofp stmodern o PhilosophyEast&WestVolume62,Number4October2012580­601 ©2012byUniversityofHawai`iPress theory,nordoesitdiscounttheapplicabilityofpostmoderntheoriestocolonialand postcolonialsocieties.Armedwithquiteabatteryofpostmoderntheorieshimself, Grueninsteadconsiderstherelevanceofasinglebrandofpostmoderntheorytothe ancient Mediterranean civilizations (primarily, Greek, Roman, and Jewish). He l mentsthepropensityofcurrentscholarsofliterature,arthistory,philosophy,and a historytocherry-picktheirevidence,sothatthestandardnarrativesabout"b rbarian" a relationsinthedistantpastcomportbetterwithmodernnationalisticrhetoric:"[T]he tendencyofmodernscholarstocollectisolatedbitsandpiecesandparadethemas asamplingofGreekandRomanevaluations"is"notonlymethodologicallyflawed, butdownrightmisleading,"hewrites(p.101).4Lessplainlybutnolesspersuasively, Gruenopposesthecuriousmodernnotionthattheprocessofhuman"self-ashioning" f cannotproceedintheabsenceofasinglewell-definedOther. PropelledbyEdwardSaid'spowerfulbookandsubalternstudies,thebooksand essayspositingtheclassicalrootsofracismarelegion.TwoinfluentialworksthatimmediatelyspringtomindareBenjaminIsaac'sThe Invention of Racism in Classical Antiquity(Princeton,2004),inGruen'sfield,andNicoladiCosmo'sAncient China and Its Enemies: The Rise of Nomadic Power in East Asian History(Cambridge,2002), inmine.5Thefewexceptionsequallystandout,forexampleIanMoyer'sfineEgypt and the Limits of Hellenism (Cambridge,2011)andPaulRouzer'sexemplarychapter onfrontiercultureinArticulated Ladies(Harvard,2001).6Theexceptionsnotwithstanding,foraverylongtimethebulkofClassicsscholarshiphasbeenpredicated upon unvarying Greek http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Philosophy East and West University of Hawai'I Press

Talk about "Barbarians" in Antiquity

Philosophy East and West , Volume 62 (4) – Nov 2, 2012

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Abstract

learnsomething"(KwasiWiredu,Cultural Universals and Particulars: An African Perspective[Bloomington:IndianaUniversityPress,1996],p.153). 4­Obeyesekerearguedthataperceiver'sembeddednessinculturedoesnot"ren der discrimination impossible" (Gananath Obeyesekere, The Apotheosis of Captain Cook: European Mythmaking in the Pacific[Princeton:PrincetonUniversityPress,1992],p.21);Sahlinscounteredwith"differentcultures,different rationalities" hattoassumea"commonsensebourgeoisrealism"wastoretro--t activelyimposetheEnlightenmentviewofrationalitybroughtbyCook(Marshall DavidSahlins, How `Natives' Think: About Captain Cook, for Example[Chicago: UniversityofChicagoPress,1995],p.14).JohnCharlotstressesthat,whilein classical Hawaiian thought there was no "dualism between the material and i material,"thisdidnotattenuatetheautonomyofreasonincontemplatingand m modifyingtheworld( ohnCharlot,Classical Hawaiian Education: Generations J of Hawaiian Culture[L`ie,HI:ThePacificInstitute,BrighamYoungUniversity, 2005],p.90).Inthefullestcontemporaryreconstructionofkanaka maoliphilosophy,ManulaniAluliMeyerengagespragmatismandempiricismtodiscover "fundamental principles of knowing," which include "instinctive, innate or a cestralknowledge"(ManulaniAluliMeyer,Ho`oulu: Our Time of Becoming: n Hawaiian Epistemology and Early Writings[Honolulu:`AiPhakuPress,2003], p. 78) as part of a "triangulation of meaning" (see Meyer, "Indigenous and A thentic:HawaiianEpistemologyandtheTriangulationofMeaning,"inHandu book of Critical and Indigenous Methodologies,ed.NormanK.Denzin,Yvonna S.Lincoln,andLindaTuhiwaiSmith[LosAngeles:SagePublications,2008],pp. 217­233). Michael Nylan HistoryDepartment,UniversityofCaliforniaatBerkeley Rethinking the Other in Antiquity.ByErichS.Gruen.Princeton:PrincetonUniversity Press,2011.Pp.xiv+415. AnewbookinthefieldofGreekandRomanClassicshasimportantimplicationsfor serious students of early and middle-period China as well.1 As its title suggests, Rethinking the Other in AntiquitybyErichS.Gruencallsintoquestiononeofthe reigningparadigmsusedbyhistoriansoftheclassicalera,2askingwhetherscholars havenotbeenover-eagertoretrojectpostcolonialnotionsoftheOther(thedisparaged,disdained,demonized,andevensubhuman)3ontotheantiqueworld.Tobe clearattheoutset:Gruen'sbookdoesnotofferablanketcondemnationofp stmodern o PhilosophyEast&WestVolume62,Number4October2012580­601 ©2012byUniversityofHawai`iPress theory,nordoesitdiscounttheapplicabilityofpostmoderntheoriestocolonialand postcolonialsocieties.Armedwithquiteabatteryofpostmoderntheorieshimself, Grueninsteadconsiderstherelevanceofasinglebrandofpostmoderntheorytothe ancient Mediterranean civilizations (primarily, Greek, Roman, and Jewish). He l mentsthepropensityofcurrentscholarsofliterature,arthistory,philosophy,and a historytocherry-picktheirevidence,sothatthestandardnarrativesabout"b rbarian" a relationsinthedistantpastcomportbetterwithmodernnationalisticrhetoric:"[T]he tendencyofmodernscholarstocollectisolatedbitsandpiecesandparadethemas asamplingofGreekandRomanevaluations"is"notonlymethodologicallyflawed, butdownrightmisleading,"hewrites(p.101).4Lessplainlybutnolesspersuasively, Gruenopposesthecuriousmodernnotionthattheprocessofhuman"self-ashioning" f cannotproceedintheabsenceofasinglewell-definedOther. PropelledbyEdwardSaid'spowerfulbookandsubalternstudies,thebooksand essayspositingtheclassicalrootsofracismarelegion.TwoinfluentialworksthatimmediatelyspringtomindareBenjaminIsaac'sThe Invention of Racism in Classical Antiquity(Princeton,2004),inGruen'sfield,andNicoladiCosmo'sAncient China and Its Enemies: The Rise of Nomadic Power in East Asian History(Cambridge,2002), inmine.5Thefewexceptionsequallystandout,forexampleIanMoyer'sfineEgypt and the Limits of Hellenism (Cambridge,2011)andPaulRouzer'sexemplarychapter onfrontiercultureinArticulated Ladies(Harvard,2001).6Theexceptionsnotwithstanding,foraverylongtimethebulkofClassicsscholarshiphasbeenpredicated upon unvarying Greek

Journal

Philosophy East and WestUniversity of Hawai'I Press

Published: Nov 2, 2012

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