Greeks and Achaemenids: War, Diplomacy, Trade, and Culture
Sponsored by American Philological Association
Thursday, January 2, 2014 - 8:00am to Sunday, January 5, 2014 - 6:00pm

United States

CFP Deadline: 
Friday, February 1, 2013

Call for Papers: APA 2014 (Chicago, 2-5 January 2014)

Greeks and Achaemenids: War, Diplomacy, Trade, and Culture
John O. Hyland, Christopher Newport University
John W. I. Lee, University of California at Santa Barbara

In the absence of Persian narrative sources, Classicists long relied on Greek texts to construct their visions of the Achaemenid Persian Empire, often focusing on the Greek-Persian Wars of the early fifth century.  Against this Hellenocentric perspective, much scholarship since the 1980s has explicitly sought to avoid over-privileging Greek accounts of Achaemenid institutions, behavior, and culture, and to provide a more balanced perspective on Greek-Persian interactions.  More recently, however, some have expressed concern that the significance of Persia’s military encounters with the Greek city-states might be excessively downplayed, or that Achaemenid scholars have gone too far in their reassessment of the Greek evidence (see for example the warning of Briant 2010 against simplistic “rehabilitation” of Darius III, or the analysis of Achaemenid scholarship in Harrison 2011).

As scholars continue to examine the relationship between the Achaemenid Empire and the Greeks, and to discuss how best to situate the Greek evidence alongside source material from other regions of the Achaemenid world, there is increasing recognition that Achaemenids and Greeks shared an entwined history, shaped not only by war but also by extensive diplomacy, trade, and cultural exchange.  Studying these interactions offers opportunities for multidisciplinary cooperation amongst scholars working in diverse fields using diverse sources and methodologies.

This panel aims to encourage new discussions and scholarly cooperation by focusing on military, diplomatic, economic, and cultural interactions amongst Persians, Greeks and others on the western frontiers of the empire (including Anatolia, Egypt, the Levant, and Thrace).  The organizers seek papers that assess the relationships between the Greek sources and the non-Greek Achaemenid sources, that present new evidence for Greek-Achaemenid interactions, and that offer new interpretations that will open new lines of communication across traditional departmental and field boundaries.

Topics may include (but are not limited to) Persian and Greek perspectives on military conflict, imperialism, resistance and collaboration; the development of Achaemenid foreign policy in light of the empire’s interactions with the Greeks; embassies and the mechanics of Greco-Persian treaty negotiations; the role of eastern Greeks and native Anatolians in the empire; and cultural encounters or exchanges between Persians and Greeks.  The organizers especially welcome papers that address trade and economic interaction amongst Greeks, Persians, and others in the Achaemenid world.

This panel will include four papers of 20-minute length.  Anonymous abstracts no more than one-page in length in PDF format may be sent as attachments to  Please provide the title of this panel, full contact information, and any audio-visual equipment requirements in the body of your e-mail.  Abstracts must be received by February 1, 2013.

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