Political Sociology: A Reader

By S. N. Eisenstadt | Go to book overview

Moreover, in such cases the city-states could provide very important ingredients or bases for the constitution of new, more differentiated political regimes, whether feudal or imperial. In them the specific symbolism of the city-states not only was a sort of appendage to that of the patrimonial or tribal ruler but could also constitute the basis of new, wider political orientation and symbolism.

For Greece, see Victor Ehrenberg, The Greek City‐ State (Oxford: Basil Blackwell, 1960); M. I. Finley, The Ancient Greeks (New York: Viking, 1963); A. Gouldner, Enter Plato (New York: Basic Books, 1965). For Rome, see A. R. E. Boak, History of Rome to 565 A.D. (New York: Macmillan, 1955); L. Homo, Roman Political Institutions (London: Routledge and Kegan Paul, 1962); R. Syme, The Roman Revolution (Oxford: Basil Blackwell, 1939). For Sumer, see Anton Deimel, "Sumerische Tempelwirtschaft zur Zeit Urukaginas und Seiner Vorgänger," Analecta Orientalia, No. 2 (Rome: Pontifical Biblical Institute, 1931); Samuel N. Kramer, The Sumerians: Their History, Culture and Character (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1963); Anna Schneide, Die sumerische Tempelstadt (Essen: G. D. Bädiker, 1920). For Babylonia, see C. J. Gadd, "The Cities of Babylonia," The Cambridge Ancient History, 2nd ed., Vol. I (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1962), Ch. 13; Stephen H. Langdon, "Early Babylonia and Its Cities," ibid. (1928), I, 356-402. For Assyria, see Robert M. Adams, The Evolution of Urban Society (Chicago: Aldine, 1966); J. J. Finkelstein, "Mesopotamian Historiography," Proceedings of the American Philosophical Society, CVII, 461-472, 1963.
Robert J. Braidwood and Gorden R. Willey, eds., Courses Towards Urban Life: Archeological Considerations of Some Cultural Alternates, Viking Fund Publications in Anthropology (New York, 1962), No. 32; Dietz O. Edzard, Die Fruhdynastiche Zeit. In die altorientalischen Reiche, I: Fischer Weltgeschichte, Bd. 2, ed. Elena Cassin, Jean Bottéro and Jean Vercoutter (Frankfurt am Main: Fischer Bucherei, 1965); Adam Falkenstein, "La cité-temple sumérienne," Cahiers d'Historie Mondiale (1954) I, 784-814.
For India and Southeast Asia, see Milton Singer, ed., Traditional India: Structure and Change (Philadelphia: American Folklore Society, 1959); Michael D. Coe, "Social Typology and the Tropical Forest Civilizations," Comparative Studies in Society and History, II (1955), 67-92; Hugh Tinker, The City in the Asian Polity (London: School of Oriental and African Studies, 1966); Lawrence P. Briggs, "The Ancient Khmer Empire," Proceedings of the American Philosophical Society, Vol. XLI, Part I (Philadelphia: 1951).
For Mexico, see Adams, op. cit.; Angel Palerm and Eric R. Wolf, "Ecological Potential and Culture Development in Mesoamerica," Studies in Human Ecology (Washington, D.C.: Panamerican Union, Social Science Monographs, No. 3, 1957); Sylvanus G. Morley, The Aocient Maya, 3rd ed., rev. by George W. Brainard (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1956). For Peru, see John V. Murra, "On Inca Political Structure," Proceedings of American Ethnological Society (1958), pp. 30-41.
See the classical exposition of Henri Pirenne, Early Democracies in the Low Countries, trans. J. V. Saunders (New York: Harper and Row, 1963), and the bibliography.
Mikhail Rostovtsev, Caravan Cities, trans. D. and T. Talbot Rice (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1932).
For greater detail on this, see A. Bozeman, Politics and Culture in International History (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1960), Chs. 2 and 3.
Finley, op. cit., p. 37.
A. W. Gomme, "The Working of the Athenian Democracy," History, XXXVI (1951), 12-28; A. H. M. Jones, "The Social Structure of Athens in the Fourth Century B.C.," Economic History Review, Second Series, VIII, No. 2 (1955), 141-155.
Charles C. Picard, La Vie Quotidienne à Carthage au Temps d'Hannibal (Paris: Hachette, 1958).
Max Weber, "Citizenship," in General Economic History, trans. Frank H. Knight (New York: Collier, 1961), pp. 233-248.
J. B. Bary, A History of Greece to the Death of Alexander the Great, 2nd ed. (London: Macmillan, 1924), Chs. II-III; Bozeman, op. cit.


The material on the city-states is divided into two sections. In the first we present three excerpts from the works of some of the classical historians and philosophers that (as does also the excerpt from Aristotle in the first section) represent some of their reflections on the nature of political order in general and that of the city-state in particular.

The passages taken from The Histories by Polybius discuss the advantages and disadvantages of different forms of government—monarchy, oligarchy, and democracy, the latter of which he calls "mob-rule." He also gives a historical-sociological analysis of the conditions for the development of the different types of government, points out the differences between Sparta and Rome, and weaves into this analysis his appreciation of the constitution of Lycurgus. Polybius analyzes also the process of change through revolution in the city-states.

"The Funeral Oration of Pericles," which is taken from Thucydides' Peloponnesian War, represents Athenian political and social order at the peak of its development. In our terms it can be said that Pericles epitomized the need for high institutional differentiation in a situation in which there was but little difference in the membership of the center and periphery.

The selections from The Annals by Tacitus throw


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