The Performance and Presentation of Obligations

Peter Liddel

in Civic Obligation and Individual Liberty in Ancient Athens

Published in print October 2007 | ISBN: 9780199226580
Published online January 2008 | e-ISBN: 9780191710186 | DOI:

Series: Oxford Classical Monographs

 The Performance and Presentation of Obligations

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This chapter surveys the obligations of the citizen and the ways in which their performance was presented. The chapter opens with those domestic obligations of male and female Athenian citizens which were couched in a public context (5.1), and investigates political and litigious obligations in Athens as they were performed by both professional politicians and the mass of citizens (5.2‐3). Financial obligations (trierarchy, epidosis, choregia) and military obligations are analysed alongside the opportunity that they offered for ostentatious expenditure and supererogation (5.4‐5). Finally, it will analyse those obligations unfamiliar to a Rawlsian universe: providing grain for the city (5.6), not leaving the city in a time of crisis (5.7) and religious obligations (5.8). This chapter illustrates how the compatibility of these considerable obligations with a notion of citizenship as liberty was worked out in the oratorical and epigraphical discussion of obligations: obligations were presented even as upholding Athenian liberty.

Keywords: performance; politicians; citizens; political obligations; financial obligations; military obligations; ostentatious expenditure; supererogation; grain; religious obligations

Chapter.  39921 words. 

Subjects: Classical History

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