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Power and Citizenship in Athenian Democracy

Date and Time: 
Tuesday, April 23, 2019. 04:30 PM - 06:00 PM
Meeting Location: 
Humanities Center Boardroom
Workshop: 
Ethics and Politics, Ancient and Modern 2018
Meeting Description: 

All EPAM sessions are pre-read. We will begin with a brief summary of the paper and comments by a graduate student, followed by a response from Professor Campa. Afterward, the floor will be opened for questions.

Freedom has long been understood as a central feature of Athenian democracy in ideology and practice. In this paper, Professor Naomi Campa considers the function and definition of power as entailed by the democratic conception of freedom. Employing P. Morriss’ framework of power as the ability to effect desired action, rather than solely power over others, she argues that being powerful was conceptually linked with Athenian democratic citizenship and was practically expressed in private and public action. In particular, that the adult male experience as kurios shaped expectations and actualities. Professor Campa turns to case studies from Aeschines’ and Demosthenes’ forensic oratory to explore cases of competing claims to power.

Naomi Campa joined the Classics Department at Kenyon as a visiting assistant professor after completing her doctorate in philosophy at the University of Washington. Her research specialties include ancient political theory, oratory, and philosophy. Campa's current book project, "I Do What I Want: Freedom and Power in Classical Athens," investigates the ideologies of freedom and power underlying citizenship in the first democracy.

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