- Title Pages
- List of Figures and Maps
- Note on Spellings and Inscription Conventions
2A Lapse into Unreason
3Individuals and Oracles
4The Dwelling of the Spirit
5A Catalogue and Summary of Published Questions by Individuals and Responses from the Dodona Oracle
6Oracles and Daily Life
9The Best Defence
10Business as Usual?
11Love and Curses
12Curses and Risk
Appendix 1Questions Presented by Communities at the Oracle of Dodona
Appendix 2Texts Excluded from the Relationship Category
- Catalogue of Binding Curses
- Index Locorum
- General Index
- (p.10) 1 Exploring Uncertainty
- Oracles, Curses, and Risk Among the Ancient Greeks
Esther Eidinow (Contributor Webpage)
- Oxford University Press
This chapter explores the history of the idea of risk and different ways of theorising this concept. It argues that the theory that ‘risks’ are socially constructed (an approach developed by the anthropologist Mary Douglas) can help modern scholars to understand the role played by oracles and curses in ancient Greek culture. The social construction of risks holds that different communities will select some dangers from others for particular attention as ‘risks’. These selections are connected to a community's worldview and its values and beliefs; in particular, conceptions of blame, accountability and responsibility.
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