This study, unique of its kind, asks how slavery was viewed by the leading spokesmen of Greece and Rome. There was no movement for abolition in these societies, or a vigorous debate, such as occurred in antebellum America, but this does not imply that slavery was accepted without question. This book draws on a wide range of sources, pagan, Jewish and Christian, over ten centuries, to challenge the common assumption of passive acquiescence in slavery, and the associated view that, Aristotle apart, there was no systematic thought on slavery. The work contains both a typology of attitudes to slavery ranging from critiques to justifications, and paired case studies of leading theorists of slavery, Aristotle and the Stoics, Philo and Paul, Ambrose and Augustine.
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