L’hybris degli oppressi: Onore e controllo sociale nel mondo greco (e nel nostro)

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Abstract / Description of output

The paradigmatic form of hybris in the Greek sources (consistently with how the concept is conceptualised in modern psychology and business studies) had to do with the self-assertion of the rich and powerful, which resulted in their disrespecting their subordinates in arrogating to the themselves claims to respect they were not entitled to. This contribution looks at the flipside of this scenario, because hybris, as the arrogating of timē to which one has no right, can also proceed in Greek thought in the opposite direction: from the bottom up. The concept of timē, that is, can accommodate also instances of individuals of subordinate status overstepping the remit of their position in the social hierarchy and arrogating to themselves prerogatives that are reserved for those higher up in the social ladder. While denouncing the hybris of the powerful has egalitarian implications – it defends the right to equal respect (or at least to some respect) of those who are disrespected – denouncing the hybris of the downtrodden towards their superiors is a tool for maintaining and reproducing a social hierarchy by grounding it on an allegedly shared (yet heavily asymmetrical) recognition order.
Original languageItalian
JournalRivista di Filologia e Istruzione Classica
Issue number1
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 7 Jan 2024


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