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Free speech in the ancient democracy was not a protected right but an expression of the freedom from hierarchy, awe, reverence and shame. That freedom was challenged by the consequences of the rejection of shame (aidos) which had served as a cohesive force within the polity. Through readings of Socrates's trial, Greek tragedy and comedy, Thucydides's History, and Plato's Protagoras, this volume explores the paradoxical connections between free speech, democracy, shame, and Socratic philosophy and Thucydidean history.
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