Marx in the Agora

When Cyrenus Osborne Ward, that interesting figure in early American socialism, wanted to publish his two-volume work The Ancient Lowly, he had to arrange to do so (essentially) himself, since no established publisher would touch such a work. Ward took his task of telling the history of the ancient lower …

The Bitter History of Slave History

There has, in the last few decades, been as much, and almost as bitter, controversy over ancient slavery as over slavery nearer in time and place and more obviously “relevant.” M.I. Finley’s long interest in ancient slavery has made him the foremost expert on this subject—as on Greek and Roman …

Alexander’s Mules

The annual book on Alexander the Great has become a laughing-stock among scholars, though authors and publishers apparently continue to find it profitable. Engels shows that serious and important work on Alexander is possible, and that it need not be confined to the obscurity of professional journals. This book by …

Imposing Gibbon

This year marks the centenary of the publication of Johannes Brahms’s First Symphony. An international colloquium, largely funded by American taxpayers, will be held at Schönbrunn Palace in Vienna, and twenty scholars from various countries will discuss Brahms’s life, work, and influence. Fact or fiction? Someone may know. But at …

In Defense of Empire

“In our own disordered times, it is natural to look back for comfort and instruction to the experience of Roman imperial statecraft.” Thus writes Professor Luttwak. Livy, one of the historians treated by Lidia Mazzolani, started his own history of Rome in order to distract his mind from the unbearable …

The Lives of Ancient Women

It is characteristic of the historical “invisibility” of women that no serious and comprehensive account of ancient women has hitherto existed. Naturally, historians of antiquity have concentrated on the kind of history made possible by the very limited evidence available to them. But they have long been using this to …

The Alexander Romance

The appearance of a new book of 550 pages on Alexander the Great needs justification. From antiquity to the present day, there have probably been more books written on Alexander than on any other man in history, and the present publication rate in English is about one a year, most …