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Peloponnesian War

(The Great Courses)

4.26  ·  Rating details ·  179 ratings  ·  17 reviews
Course Lecture Titles
1. Thucydides and the Peloponnesian War
2. The Greek Way of War
3. SpartaPerceptions and Prejudices
4. Sparta and Her Allies
5. The Athenian Democracy
6. Athens and the Navy
7. Victory over Persia, 490479 B.C.
8. Athens or SpartaA Question of Leadership
9. Cimonian Imperialism
10. Sparta after the Persian Wars
11. The First Peloponnesian War
12. The Th
Audio CD, 18 pages
Published by The Great Courses (first published January 1st 2007)
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 ·  179 ratings  ·  17 reviews

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Jan 03, 2021 rated it liked it
Shelves: history
A very good lecture series on the Peleponnesian War. It fell just close of great in my opinion because in this one of all his lectures Professor Harl strays farthest from conventional thoughts on the subject. This would of been fine but his stated reasons for this difference of opinion of orthodoxy is a bit thin. I can see his point of view that conventional thought on Sparta is skewed too far in one direction but in this case I think he over corrects in the opposite way. So if this is your firs ...more
So good. There's more about Thucydides and his world here than one may likely to ever care to know. Highly recommended! ...more
Mar 15, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audio, history
A thorough history of the causes, proceedings, and effects of the Peloponnesian war. The lecturer, Harl, does a wonderful job of presenting the material. I admit I lost the thread with dates, names, and battle details, but the thrust of the discussion is great.

Following Thucydides’ famous history, but adding to it from other historical accounts and other sources, Harl presents an analysis of the various causes of the war. He makes great effort not to demonize the Spartans or unilaterally praise
Apr 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: history
The Peloponnesian War is a series of 36 lectures by Dr. Kenneth Harl regarding the 5th century war between Athens and Sparta. Dr Harl closely follows the eminent historian Thucydides in his timeline but also connects the war with other sources to what we commonly call the 'Classical Period or the Golden Age of Greece' between 500 and 300 BC. Dr Harl’s lectures illustrate lessons for us today including (1) recognizing the importance of servant leadership as necessary to functioning democracies (c ...more
Dec 06, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: history
Professor Harl maintains his status as my favorite Great Courses lecturer with The Peloponnesian War. He has such enthusiasm for the subject that he makes ancient history feel like contemporary news.
Micsescu Raul
Aug 10, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Even tucidides would enjoy this. And very well put into context.
Elwin Kline
Nov 04, 2020 rated it really liked it
Professor Harl did an outstanding job. What I love most about him is his energy, enthusiasm, and excitement when he gets fired up about a particular topic. I truly do believe that this is a man really pursuing what he loves and actually getting paid for it.

Some notable highlights of this course that I absolutely loved was the opening lectures on hoplite and naval warfare, which I enjoyed so much that these two lectures alone are worth waiting in line for this Great Course. Other very interestin
Aaron Kimpton
Feb 04, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I am excited to get back into the history. A few books of fiction, and i find my self happily back here soaking up more reality.

I am on lecture 18. Fascinating. I like how it is coming along. Very well done.

Fascinating. The total picture over the decades is just amazing. Great read. Long read, and one that will need to be read a couple of times to have it all sink in.
Mark Lawry
Feb 05, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Another classic by Harl. As so often the case with Great Courses knowing a bit about the geography and history would be helpful. He rattles off cities and generals fast and furious. One would think he has spent a career studying and writing about just this region. Except he has somehow done this on so many of his books and lectures on other topics.
Joshua Dew
Nov 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is the second Great Courses lecture series I've listened to (the other was on Plato's Republic) and they were both interesting, well-organized, and professionally delivered. ...more
Jul 01, 2017 rated it liked it
A bit too pro-Sparta, but otherwise pretty good and detailed.
Mar 09, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: history, tgc, classics
36 30 minute audio lectures along with a 272 page syllabus.
Thucydides (an Athenian general/historian living at the time of the war) provides the history for much of these lectures, but Dr Harl brings the exquisite details to life. For those considering buying this series, either go with the video presentation or listen to the audio augmented with online maps and will need to know the area in order appreciate the action. And there is a lot of action! The good professor lays a f
Oct 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Wonderful course, really enjoyed it throughout. Being a Greek native speaker, pronunciation of names hit me as very weird in the start (who the hell are "Αλσιμπαηντης" "Θουσιίτιντης" and "Μπράσιντας"?) but you get used to it quickly. Overall analysis and delivery of the course are of the greatest standard and the lecturer is very capable of capturing and keeping your attention. This is the second course of Prof. Harl I am listening too (the other was Alexander the Great) and I can highly recomme ...more
Jan 14, 2016 rated it really liked it
Pretty interesting - Dr. Harl definitely has a view on what he thinks the Spartan role was in winning, and I think the non-standard view is refreshing, because he provides lots of interesting details to support his claim. Definitely worth the listen if you're interested in or otherwise studying the topic. ...more
Oct 08, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: de-lijst
I listened to this audio book in parallel to reading 'The Pelopponesean War'. It gave me a lot of background and extra contents which made reading the book even more interesting. Mr Harls enthousiastic presentation, together with his roaring voice made this a very enjoyable learning experience. ...more
Dec 27, 2019 rated it it was ok
It certainly was fascinating to learn that the Greek city states existed without women. One wonders how they went about making more men to undertake the daring deeds.
Avis Black
Jul 27, 2015 rated it liked it
Harl got me through the Peloponnesian War, for which he deserves credit, but it's a messy time period to learn about and difficult to organize in one's mind. ...more
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Dr. Kenneth W. Harl is Professor of Classical and Byzantine History at Tulane University in New Orleans, where he teaches courses in Greek, Roman, Byzantine, and Crusader history. He earned his B.A. from Trinity College and his M.A. and Ph.D. from Yale University.

Recognized as an outstanding lecturer, Professor Harl has received numerous teaching awards at Tulane, including the coveted Sheldon H.

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