Not – repeat not – because I am its editor and wrote more than half of it but mainly because this is I believe the one-volume, one-stop-shop book to have on your shelves or digitally on your computer if you want to gain something like a complete understanding and appreciation of the world or rather worlds of Ancient Greece. I can do no better than quote from the ‘blurb’ provided online by the C.U.P. itself.
It is sumptuously illustrated throughout, almost entirely in colour. It offers fresh interpretations of the whole range of ‘Classical’ Greek culture, different aspects of which are expertly handled by members of an international cast of top-notch scholars both male and female. These aspects include: the influences of the environment and economy; the effects of interstate tensions; the implications of (bi-, homo-, hetero-normative) sexuality; the experiences of workers, soldiers, slaves, peasants and women; and the roles of myth and religion, visual and other (e.g. dramatic) art and culture, and of science and education. The linguistic, literary, artistic and political legacy of ancient Greece is far-reaching and vibrantly alive still to this day. This is the book to show you why that is and should have been so.
The book was sufficiently well regarded when it first appeared (1998) for me to have been awarded the prestigious John D. Criticos Prize of the London Hellenic Society.