The Peloponnesian Civil War: An Analysis

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Thucydides was an Athenian historian that wrote The History of the Peloponnesian War. His account of the conflict is considered a classic and is one of the earliest works of history. When analyzing his work, there are multiple ways to view it. It can be looked at as an objective piece of history that attempts to record the events that unfolded. But it can also be seen as a piece of literature that tries to tell a story and evoke emotion through symbolism rather than be a historical recording. Either way that the History is viewed, there are many theoretical implications that can be drawn from it. This essay will look at three things: Human nature and its relationship with power and justice, human nature and how its struggle with power leads…show more content…
Due to the violent civil war, society made lawlessness a synonym with just action. Without the constructs of justice, human nature tends to lean towards self-interest and self-destruction. The civil war demonstrated that unrestrained human nature leads to the destruction of civilization and citizens with reject the necessity of restraint and found new laws and societal norms. In addition to this, in the Melian dialogue, the Athenians completely ignore justice when addressing their expansion campaign. For the purpose of self-interest, honor, and security, the Athenians decide upon the policies of power and their representative…show more content…
Their claim to power and how it gives them the right to whatever they want shows their signs of savagery. Them ignoring the natural justice and carrying out their campaign regardless of who or what stood in their way was nothing short of brutal. After the dialogue they proceed to attack Melos which resulted in an Athenian victory, but they still showed no mercy. They killed all the grown men and sold the women and children into slavery in their quest for expansion. Human nature showed its true colors in these two events and proved that without restraint, human nature coupled with power can be

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