Greek Polis Essay

1365 Words 5 Pages
From the 19th century on there has been a debate on the true origin of the Greek polis, or the autonomous city-state of Greece. There are two major opposing opinions on the origin of the Greek Polis, one side argues that it came to be solely through religious association, this is the view that has been taken by the French historian Fustel de Coulanges. Two notable German philosophers Max Weber, and Karl Marx hold opposing views to those of Fustel de Coulanges. According to Weber and Marx the Greek Polis was erected solely through economic associations. While these theories on the autonomous city-states origin very greatly, they are both rooted in the classical works of Aristotle, Pausanias and Plato. For many years these theories have widely …show more content…
Polignac looks at the bigger picture in terms of religion, the polis did not originate because religion existed. The polis originated because religion created one large community through the unification of smaller communities (major and minor cults). Polignac is also more persuasive due to his sources. In M.I. Finley’s piece The Ancient City he claims the Fustel lacks sources (M.I Finley 1977. 310). Polignac’s work is riddle with sources, both textual and archaeological, he utilizes everything from Homer to Kouros/Kouroi that represented the Kourotropheia. Marx and Weber state that the market place was what brought together all of the members of society, but Polignac actually shows that it was religious (agricultural) shrines that would unite the urban and non-urban …show more content…
This is not true at all for Hawaii. Hawaii displayed an extreme “Fetish for Prestige” (Professor Smith, Lecture, 2015). The Hawaiian’s had very strict organization to their three social classes the Ali’i, the chiefs and kings, Noa or commoners , and lastly Kauwa, the outcasts. Where the Greeks wanted to bring their citizens together, the Hawaiian’s wanted to keep them segregated at all times, and held strict rules to ensure that this happened. “Tapu! Lie Down!” ( Kirch, 2010, 38-41) is what you would hear if a member of the Ali’i class was approaching. When members of the lower classes heard this Tapu call they were to stop everything, and lie down naked in the dirt with their face to the ground. Ignoring this call would result in

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