Alexander: Ancient Greek History

   Alexander, son of Phillip, was able to handle cultural differences between the people of the various cultures he conquered and his Greek subjects by means of propaganda disguised as respect. For example, to ensure that his Greek soldiers could be trusted further he freed Greek settlements across Asia Minor. Along the way, he would send victory announcements back to the people such as the “…three hundred suits of Persian armor” [1] he had sent to Athens as proof of victory with the messages of, “From Alexander, the son of Phillip, and the Greeks, except the Spartans”, [2] attached.

Next, to keep the support of the people he conquered he continued the propaganda [via respect] in ways that made the conquered feel as if they were joining an empire, not simply being taken over. This type of propaganda can be seen with the family of Darius III who fled after a battle against Alexander leaving his family to fend for themselves.[3] Instead of having Darius’ family executed, as other ruthless conquerors would have done, Alexander treated them with the utmost respect and gave them his protection. As a result, Alexanders actions legitimized his succession as King to Darius’ kingdom by the people [4] Furthermore, Alexander, while spreading Greek culture in his wake, did not attempt to stifle out the cultural aspects of the people he conquered. For example, he encouraged his soldiers and citizens to embrace Persian clothing, art, music, and even to marry Persian wives. [5]

Footnotes:

  1. D. Brendan Nagle and University of Southern California, The Ancient World: a Social and Cultural History, 8th ed. (New Jersey: Pearson, 2013), 138.
  2. Ibid.
  3. Ibid, 140.
  4. Ibid.
  5. Giotto, “Alexander the Great and the Hellenistic Age,” Mr. Giotto’s Online Textbook, accessed June 1, 2017, http://www.penfield.edu/webpages/jgiotto/index.cfm.

 


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