Introduction

The bibliography provides information on writings dealing with the history of rape, including sexual child abuse, sexual harassment, sexual molestation, child prostitution, forced prostitution, sexual slavery, sexual(ized) violence. The blog informs about calls for papers, forthcoming events and new literature in this field.

June 22, 2013

ART: Treatment of Captives in Ancient Greek Warfare: A Vicious Circle

Author: Antony Kalashnikov
Title: Treatment of Captives in Ancient Greek Warfare
Subtitle: A Vicious Circle
Journal: Vexillum: The Undergraduate Journal of Classical and Medieval Studies
Volume: 3
Issue: -
Year: 2013
Pages: 9 pages
Language: English
Full Text: Vexillum [Free Access]

Abstract: »The Nereid Monument in the Lycean tomb, dated to between 390 and 380 BCE, depicts a besieged city in which a woman is tearing out her hair in lament of her potential fate – rape, enslavement, and possibly death. The image testifies to the cruel and inhumane treatment of captives that often characterized ancient Greek warfare, particularly with respect to siege warfare. In ancient Greece, only the taking of a city resulted in a large number of captives, both combatants and civilians. This essay argues that the treatment of captives constituted a vicious cycle in which the defenders of city would resolutely resist the siege for fear of massacre, mass rape, and enslavement; this stalwart defense, in turn, would contribute to cruel treatment of captives when and if the city fell. I organize this paper in the following way: after outlining the treatment of captives in Greek siege warfare in general, I explore the options that defenders faced and examine the motives of cruel treatment of captives in the light of having faced hardened resistance during the siege. Lastly, I examine a possible limitation to this argument posed by the distinction Greek philosophers drew between Greek and barbarian combatants, but demonstrate the argument’s continued validity despite this assertion.« [Source: Vexillum]