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Freedom and its Problems The Life of Neaera pg 111Ancient Greece the inventor of democracy philosophy and much of modern western culture and thought was also the proprietor of the most dehumanizing institution known to mankind slavery The excerpt from The Ancient World Readings in Social and Cultural History entitled The Life of Neaera tells the ever so sad story of a slave girl sold into a life of prostitution and all the hardships she must endure in her quest for survival and happiness Through out the course of this semester we have learned about many aspects of ancient Greek culture and civilization three of which we learn about on a very personal level through out the story of Neaera Namely these aspects are Citizenship and its restrictions Slavery vs Freedom and what that meant and finally sexuality and how it was viewed in ancient Greece One of the central themes of this piece and the basis of the prosecutors argument is citizenship and the rights afforded to those who have it Or should I say the restrictions applied to those not so fortunate to have been born into citizenship For unlike the status of slave which was one that could fluctuate citizenship was something that one either had or didnt Unfortunately for Neaera she was not born with this privilege and this comes back to haunt her in the future Neaera meets an Athenian citizen named Stephanus and decides to move back to Athens with him and become his wife This in itself caused a great problem because as Demosthenes wrote Unlike the situation at Rome however where freedom brought with it automatic citizenship freedom for a slave in Greece was hedged about with severe restrictions A freed slave had no political rights could not marry a citizen and had only limited property rights pg112 Not only does she marry a citizen but they also try to pass off her children as his and
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