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Home » Books » Nonfiction » Social Sciences » Women's Studies

Spartan Women

By Sarah B. Pomeroy

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Format: Paperback / softback, 216 pages
Other Information: 13 halftones
Published In: United States, 31 August 2002
Sparta, which existed from 800 B.C. until A.D. 200, was renowned in the ancient world as a stoic and martial city-state, and most of what we know about Sparta concerns its military history and male-dominated social structure. Yet Spartan women were in many ways among the most liberated of the ancient world, receiving formal instruction in poetry, music, dance, and physical education. And the most famous of mythic Greek women, Helen of Troy, was originally a Spartan. Written by one of the leading authorities on women in antiquity, Spartan Women seeks to reconstruct the lives and the world of Sparta's women, including how their legal status changed over time and how they held on to their surprising autonomy. In this book, Sarah Pomeroy covers over a thousand years in the lives of Sparta's women from both the elite and lower classes. This is the first book-length examination of Spartan women, and Pomeroy comprehensively analyses ancient texts and archaeological evidence to construct the history of these elusive though much noticed women. Spartan Women is an authoritative and fresh account that will appeal to all readers interested in ancient history and women's studies.

Table of Contents

1. Education ; 2. Daughters, Wives and Mothers ; 3. Elite Women ; 4. The Lower Classes ; 5. Religion ; 6. Conclusion: Gender and Ethnicity ; 7. Appendix: Sources ; 8. Works Cited

About the Author

Sarah B. Pomeroy is Distinguished Professor of Classics at Hunter College, City University of New York. Her many books include Ancient Greece: A Political, Social, and Cultural History (ed.) and Women in the Classical World (ed.).


Spartan Women is a landmark in the history of ancient women because it attempts for the first time to offer an account of the lives of both elite and non-elite Spartan women and to do so by sifting through a very difficult body of evidence. New England Classical Journal The scholars who will want to include this work in their libraries will also consult it as a reference handbook with the help of its ample index ... a book packed with rich detail. New England Classical Journal It is a pleasure to recommend a book of reasonable length for school sixth forms as well as University courses. The Journal of Classics Teaching ... a very welcome book on an inadequately understood subject. Pomeroy's scholarly expertise for this study is firmly established; her research has been fundamental to examinations of women's roles in classical antiquity. American Journal of Philology ... the book marks a significant advance for the study of women in ancient Sparta, as Pomeroy is the first to present the comprehensive evidence for the importance of Spartan women broadly across various arenas of Spartan society and to provide meaningful interpretations for misunderstood aspects of Spartan women's lives. American Journal of Philology

EAN: 9780195130676
ISBN: 0195130677
Publisher: Oxford University Press Inc
Dimensions: 23.32 x 16 x 1.73 centimetres (0.39 kg)
Age Range: 15+ years
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