Later Reception and Modern Recreation of Sparta | Helen Roche - nickchinlund.info
Meet the Spartans is a American parody film directed by Jason Friedberg and Aaron The blind Dilio eventually returns to Sparta to tell of Leonidas' final moments. A year The film was released on Blu-ray Disc and DVD on June 3, , in an "Unrated Pit of Death" Edition and a PG/theatrical release of the film. Tigerstedt 2 Introduction: The long shadow of the Spartan legend To read the some ideological overtones, later releases such as Meet the Spartans ( ) It is also indubitably the case that, where ancient examples were adduced as . to survive the onslaught of Napoleon's armies – just as, in the spheres of art. Meet the Spartans () on IMDb: Movies, TV, Celebs, and more. Seriously the version I saw was only and hour. As funny as the commercials make it look, this movie is very mean, gross, and juvenile. . But hoping that "they will survive", they go into a battle of stomping the yard, talking smack, and even having to deal .
The implication is that Prussia must equal Sparta in instilling her citizens with self-sacrificial love of the Fatherland, since mercenaries can never form a suitable substitute for heroic citizens. This passage clearly demonstrates the readiness with which Sparta could be represented as the paradigm of Greek military patriotism.
Yet, at the same time, we also find Prussia being compared explicitly with Sparta, in a way which suggests that such comparison should have meaningful implications for the present. We can therefore see this article not only as an impassioned attempt to bolster Prussian morale in the aftermath of the War of the First Coalitionduring which Napoleonic forces had already encroached upon German territories in the Rhineland, but also as a military, laconophile application of that philhellenism which had already become so prevalent in Prusso-German culture since the age of Winckelmann.
Here, he notes that: The Laws of Lycurgus were intended especially to make fearless soldiers of [the Spartans], and, of all the Greeks, they observed the strictest and most correct military discipline.
The power of this little State, in which one could number scarcely citizens, was founded purely on their gigantic physical strength. As long as they preserved this, they not only shared power over Greece with Athens, but, for a time, they were the sole masters, and increased their power over foreign peoples. The author implies that, if such a small polis as Sparta could manage not only to preserve her autonomy, but also to gain mastery over foreign states, by instilling her citizens with military discipline, then their way of life must certainly be one which Prussia should aim to emulate in the present.
Attention is also frequently drawn to the contemporary relevance of Greek experiences of suppression and slavery under the Persian yoke during the invasions of Darius and Xerxes BC. For Prussian readers, who had suffered similarly under French occupation, little imagination was needed to recast the overweening Persian despots as avatars of Napoleon. The [Three-hundred] fell so that, even thousands of years later, they could arouse astonished or aspiring admiration in the hearts of all who love their Fatherland, and live once more within them!
The self-sacrifice of Leonidas and his companions was more effective than the most magnificent victory: Emulation of Sparta is depicted here as both prevention and cure for putative future humiliations and incursions by hostile armies — ultimately, the author is convinced that, to achieve liberty in such a situation, or to preserve it indefinitely, one need only follow their ancient example.
Here, the warrior-discipline of the Greeks and the Spartans in particular is portrayed as providing a useful paradigm which, if adhered to, can save the Prussian people from further ignominy in the future. If we skip forward a few decades, two instances from the s offer a glimpse of the easy currency which the Spartan example still enjoyed in public debate regarding the Prussian military forty years later, after further internal upheavals in particular the revolutions of had weakened the position of the Officer Corps.
Spartan Helot: Definition & Revolt | nickchinlund.info
The moral drawn is that rank-and-file soldiers are simply not always capable of raising themselves to this higher level of obedience unless motivated by fear — they succumb to bad influences too easily. Spartan techniques of command are thus advocated as useful even for modern armies, since the speaker believes that human nature still responds in much the same way to authority today as it did in Classical Greece.
Meanwhile, during a debate in the Prussian House of Representatives Abgeordnetenhaus in Septemberone Freiherr von Vincke attempted to bring his fellow representatives round to his way of thinking regarding the importance of a standing army and a reform of the Landwehr militia system, by appealing first of all to a Spartan precedent. Gentlemen, the proof is already present in Greek history. Sparta had — that you will acknowledge — the best standing army that a state has ever possessed.
The entire ruling class was trained in warfare from infancy, and had no other purpose than to fight for their Fatherland, since all remaining civilian affairs were dealt with by the helots. That was a standing army which can be established as a paradigm and an ideal. In the Peloponnesian War, Sparta was superior to all other states, until these began to train standing armies for themselves. Vincke proceeds to back up his argument with concrete Thucydidean and Xenophontic examples — claiming, for instance, that the Spartans were only defeated at Leuctra because the Thebans under Epaminondas had finally succeeded in raising a standing army to match their own — before going on to treat an example in Roman history.
However, as soon as he stops talking about Sparta, his listeners become more and more restive — the stenographic reports note that isolated unrest Unruhe quickly spreads throughout the assembly Unruhe in der Versammlung.
By the end of the nineteenth century, once the rise in popularity of the Prussian military following the victories of the Franco-Prussian War 19 July —10 May had waned somewhat, the Officer-Corps began to elicit strong criticism for its descent into luxury and excess. These examples of the high value placed on the Spartan paradigm in military circles and contexts can, of course, only touch upon a theme which could no doubt be found in many other similar sources from this period.
Spartan Helot: Definition & Revolt
However, in general terms, we can see that, during the nineteenth century, the Spartan paradigm — often portrayed as representative of ancient Greece as a whole — was repeatedly adduced as a useful model for emulation by the Prussian military, in many different contexts. Thus, the disastrous defeat of the Sixth Army at Stalingrad in January could supposedly be sweetened in propaganda terms merely by recasting it as a second Battle of Thermopylae.
The peroration of the speech ran as follows: Most of you will have heard of a similar example from the great and formidable history of Europe. Even though at that time the numbers involved were small, ultimately there is no difference in the deed as such. Two-and-a-half thousand years ago, an infinitely brave and daring man stood in a narrow pass in Greece with of his men; Leonidas stood with his Spartiates — men from a race famed for its courageousness and daring. An overwhelming majority, ever-renewed, constantly engaged this small troop.
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The heavens darkened from the number of arrows which were shot. Then, too, it was an onslaught of hordes which crushed the Aryan men here. Finally, the last man fell. In this narrow pass there stands now an epigraph: Millennia have passed, and today that battle and that sacrifice there still hold good as heroic, as the example of the highest warriorhood.
And once again in the history of our own days will it be said: When you reach Germany, tell them that you have seen us fighting at Stalingrad, as the law, the law of the safety of our people, commanded us. Yet it was not only the most notorious officials of the Nazi regime who subscribed to what we might term an elective affinity with the Spartans, particularly those who had fought and died at Thermopylae.
An example of members of the Waffen-SS invoking Spartan heroism for their own propaganda purposes — even before the battle of Stalingrad — can be found in the report of one Paul Falke of Kompagnie Westland a motorised infantry detachment of the Wiking division, whose makeup included a large number of Scandinavian volunteers. In attempting to reconstruct the events of an engagement which took place at some point during July-August at Husiatyn on the Eastern Front, during which every member of the SS-troop in question was killed, Falke writes: The raiding-party did not reach the commanding position, yet the Russians withdrew.
They withdrew in the face of the heroic bravery of Oberjunker Vogel and his men. In speech, and in current conceptions both of everyday and of public life in present- day Germany, a new revitalisation of the ancient world, and particularly of Greek antiquity, is revealed… One speaks of Germany as of a new Sparta, and finds here the same spirit of national discipline, self-sacrifice and masculine education in camps, which once made that ancient settlement great in terms of global history.
In a sense, then, the National Socialist image of Sparta seems to have had a closer connection with previous scholarship particularly that of the German Social-Darwinist traditionthan had been the case with the nineteenth-century Prussian military Spartabild.
Why do you think that Sparta has been such a popular model down the ages? Thermopylae in the Western Imagination. Cold War foreign policy and intelligence analysis. That the National Socialist exploitation of Sparta was perceived in extremely negative terms by other countries during the Third Reich can be adduced from the evidence in Hodkinson Here, Hodkinson generally concentrates on the way in which British commentators portrayed Nazi Germany as a Sparta rediviva, without always taking fully into account the important role which German self-perceptions would have had to play in the creation of such a portrayal.
However, it is worth noting that Sparta could easily be seen by the Americans as both friend and foe in different contexts during the Cold War. However, in a more Herodotean context, Sparta could easily be recast as an avatar of the U. Interestingly, we could see this declaration as surprisingly similar to that cited in the Prussian Militair-Wochenblatt nearly a century and a half earlier above.
The historical context of the Spartan mirage may change beyond all recognition, but sometimes, its manifestations can still seem strangely familiar.
With the shifting struggle for power and prestige between western powers and the Communist bloc…, questions of political unity and ideological opposition were at the forefront… The Persian-Greek war on the screen [acted] as a symbol of the conflict between East and West which was then being played out on the world stage. A number of ancient sources mention helots that acted as domestic servants or companions to high-ranking Spartan elites. Slavery in the ancient world was remarkably different from the type of slavery practiced in the Americas.
The Spartan helots could be treated badly or abused by the Spartans and in some cases were even killed; however, despite the abuse, slavery was not a hereditary condition meaning offspring of helots were not necessarily helots themselves and the helots were owned by the state instead of individual Spartans.
Helots could marry and create their own family units. On some occasions helots were able to purchase their freedom from the state. Helots could also seek their freedom by volunteering for military engagements. In some ways, helots acted more as a lower socioeconomic class than as slaves by modern standards. Rebellion Although helots were granted more freedoms than African slaves in America were, like all enslaved people, they still chafed at the restrictions and poor treatment they received.
Over time there were a number of helot rebellions. One helot rebellion took the highly trained and generally very efficient Spartan military over thirty years to quash. After each rebellion attempt, the helots faced increased violence at the hands of their Spartan masters. Statue of Spartan warrior It is important to understand that the ancient Spartans practiced a type of eugenics program for themselves.
In Sparta, only strong infants were allowed to survive.