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A History of Greek Art

ISBN: 978-1-4443-5015-9
440 pages
January 2015, Wiley-Blackwell
A History of Greek Art (1444350153) cover image

Offering a unique blend of thematic and chronological investigation, this highly illustrated, engaging text explores the rich historical, cultural, and social contexts of 3,000 years of Greek art, from the Bronze Age through the Hellenistic period.

  • Uniquely intersperses chapters devoted to major periods of Greek art from the Bronze Age through the Hellenistic period, with chapters containing discussions of important contextual themes across all of the periods
  • Contextual chapters illustrate how a range of factors, such as the urban environment, gender, markets, and cross-cultural contact, influenced the development of art
  • Chronological chapters survey the appearance and development of key artistic genres and explore how artifacts and architecture of the time reflect these styles
  • Offers a variety of engaging and informative pedagogical features to help students navigate the subject, such as timelines, theme-based textboxes, key terms defined in margins, and further readings.
  • Information is presented clearly and contextualized so that it is accessible to students regardless of their prior level of knowledge
  • Upon publication, a book companion website will be available with the following resources: PowerPoint slides, glossary, and timeline
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List of figures



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1 Introduction and Issues in the History of Greek Art  

2 The Early and Middle Bronze Ages (c. 3100-1600 BCE)

3 The Late Bronze Age II-III (c. 1600-1075 BCE)

4 The Sub-Mycenaean, Protogeometric, & Geometric Periods (c. 1075-700 BCE)

5 Contexts I: Civic, Domestic, and Funerary

6 The Seventh Century (c. 725/700-625/600 BCE)

7 Contexts II: Sanctuaries and Architecture

8 The Sixth Century (c. 625/600-480 BCE)

9  Narrative

10 The Fifth-Century (c. 480-400 BCE)

11 The Production of Greek Art and its Markets; Textbox: Ancient and Modern Values of Art

12 The Fourth Century to c. 330 BCE

13 Identity

14 The Hellenistic Period (c. 330-30 BCE)

15 Epilogue


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Mark Stansbury-O'Donnell is a Professor of Art History at the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minnesota.  He is the author of Pictorial Narrative in Ancient Greek Art (1999), Vase Painting, Gender, and Social Identity in Archaic Athens (2006), and Looking at Greek Art (2011).

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“Mark Stansbury-O’Donnell has written a thoroughly contemporary history of Greek art – the first that effectively integrates discussions of context with sensitive analysis of style. It provides students with a rich introduction to the fabric of ancient Greek culture.” Tom Carpenter, Ohio University

“Stansbury-O’Donnell’s admirable and innovative history deserves special praise for the fact that it devotes as much attention to ancient Greek art’s cultural context as to its chronological and aesthetic development.” J.J. Pollitt, Yale University

 “Engaging introduction to Greek art…offers diachronic framework interspersed with chapters on synchronic themes, enhanced with comparative timelines including major monuments, definitions in margins, and profuse high-quality illustrations.” Barbara A. Barletta, University of Florida

“A marvelous book, beautifully written and lavishly illustrated, it presents a well-rounded narrative of ancient Greek material culture. Combining a traditional diachronic approach with a fresh thematic coverage of the “contexts” of ancient Greek art, it provides a comprehensive understanding of the Greeks and their world for students at all levels.” Kim S. Shelton, University of California, Berkeley

 “One of the many things that makes Stansbury-O’Donnell’s new survey of Greek art so refreshing – and so important – is his commitment to deep contexts. Specifically, he challenges students and teachers to think beyond the typical evolutionary model of ‘ancient Greek art history,’ and instead brilliantly focuses their attention on the rich cultural matrix that Greek art reflected, generated, and inspired.”  Peter Schultz, Concordia College

"Stansbury-O’Odonnell has created an up-to-date and stimulating volume that presents an intelligible chronological survey of Greek Art, interspersed with sections on contextual issues that examine the material from multiple synchronic perspectives and standpoints.  This work will provide a valuable starting point for discussion among students on issues ancient and modern." Craig I. Hardiman, University of Waterloo, Canada

“With Stansbury-O’Donnell’s skills in the interpretation of Greek art and the critical analysis of its historiography setting the tone throughout, this book provides readers at all levels with an insightful, thought-provoking introduction. Its clear structure, exquisite illustrations and extensive supporting materials make it the most comprehensive undergraduate textbook currently on the market.” Katharina Lorenz, University of Nottingham, United Kingdom

“Mark Stansbury-O’Donnell’s A History of Greek Art presents a wide-ranging, magisterial, and superbly illustrated account of Greek art from the beginning of the Bronze Age to the end of the Hellenistic period. Its clear structure and exceedingly well chosen examples are most useful to students and teachers alike.” Thomas Mannack, Beazley Archive, Oxford, United Kingdom

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