Passages from antiquity to feudalism by Perry Anderson

By Perry Anderson

The increase of the fashionable absolutist monarchies in Europe constitutes in lots of methods the start of the fashionable ancient epoch. Passages from Antiquity to Feudalism, the significant other quantity to Perry Anderson’s hugely acclaimed and influential Lineages of the Absolutist State, is a sustained workout in old sociology to root the advance of absolutism within the varied routes taken from the slave-based societies of old Greece and Rome to fully-fledged feudalism. during this examine Anderson vindicates and refines the explanatory energy of a Marxist belief of background, when casting a desirable mild on Greece, Rome, the Germanic invasion, nomadic society, and different styles of the evolution of feudalism in Northern, Mediterranean, jap and Western Europe.

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The resulr was the famous Macedonian phalanx, flanked by horse, victorious from Thebes to Kabul. Macedonian expansion, of course, was not merely due KO the skills of its commanders and soldiers, or its initial access to precious metals. The precondition of its eruption into Asia was its prior absorption of Greece irself. The hlacedonian monarchy consolidated its advances in the peninsula by creating new citizens from Greeks and others in the conquered regions, and urbanizing its own rural hinterland - demonstrating its capacity for extended territorial administration.

Royal lands were granted to nobles or administrators in the provinces, and autonomous villages of peasant proprietors were 6 . Westermann, The Slave Systems of Greek and Roman Antiquity, pp. 28-31. 7 . For descriptions of this system, see Rostovtsev, The Social and Economic Histoty of the Hellenistic World, Vol. I, pp. 274-300; there is an analytic survey of the various forms of labour usage in Lagid Egypt in K. K. Zel’in, M. K. Trofimova, Formy Zavisimosti v Vostochrwm SrediTemnomor’e Ellenisticheskovo Perioda, Moscow 1969, pp.

A considerable bureaucracy 8. Rostovtsev, The Social and Economic History of the Hellenistic World, Vol. 11, pp. 806, 1106, I 178, 1161. Slaves were also widely employed in the royal mines and industries of Pergamum. Rostovtsev thought that there continued to be an abundance of slaves in the Greek homelands themselves during the Hellenistic epoch (op. cit. pp. 625-6, 1127). 9. Alexander’s own cosmopolitanism has often been exaggerated, on slender evidence; for an effective critique of the claims made for it, see E.

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