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USA and ancient Athens

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I was just reading about ancient Athens and it really struck me how similar their culture was to the modern American one and how we've taken it up to the next level. The Athenians had a lot of extra time and money to spend lots of time gossiping, preening, working out, playing, chatting, philosophizing and arguing... but every so often the war machine would carry everyone off to do battle here and there. They weren't considered the best soldiers, but their money made for a really spiffy navy which could usually handle it or resupply the city during siege, etc. (Males would spend 18-20 in the military and be on reserve until they were 60. Average longevity for males was 44 and females earlier.)


Now days, we have all the leisure time and the war machine going simultaneously and no danger of Spartans showing up on the border or anything. Gravy situation. (Reading history really makes me appreciate what I have!!)


One interesting thing, it appears as if the most important things in Athenian life were health, looks, and money (and military victory when that sort of thing comes up.)


Where's love and family???


I haven't been able to decipher whether they simply didn't write about it or if they weren't as into it. I read a quote taken from a trial of an Athenian who said, in an attempt to make his family look proper, that the females of his household hardly even ever saw the males. That's pretty wild!!! Sounds like they weren't as into love and family. Basic home design did separate males and females and their socializing was completely separate.


And those Spartans... they were a totally crazy crew... boys would be drafted into harsh military training at age 7... But the women were ignored to the point of being fairly liberated and could do whatever, wear whatever, etc as long as they were harsh on their young children. Some Spartan women engaged in hard core sports.


Wild times.

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