This 2010 volume explores the proposition that the absorption of the Greek world into the Roman empire created a new emphasis upon local identities, much as globalisation in the modern world has done. Localism became the focal point for complex debates: in some cases, it was complementary with imperial objectives, but in others tension can be discerned. The volume as a whole seeks to add texture and nuance to the existing literature on Greek identity, which has tended in recent years to emphasise the umbrella category of the Greek, to the detriment of specific polis and regional identities. It also contributes to the growing literature on the Romanisation of provinces, by emphasising the dialogue between a region's self-identification as a distinct space and its self-awareness as a component of the centrally-governed empire.
Tim Whitmarsh is fellow, tutor and E. P. Warren Praelector at Corpus Christi College, Oxford. A specialist in Greek literature and culture of the Roman period, he has written over 50 books and articles on the topic, including Greek Literature and the Roman Empire: The Politics of Imitation (Oxford University Press, 2001) and The Second Sophistic (Cambridge University Press, 2005). He has lectured all over the world, appeared on BBC radio, and written for the Times Literary Supplement and the London Review of Books.
1. Thinking local Tim Whitmarsh; 2. Imperial identities Clifford Ando; 3. What is local identity? The politics of cultural mapping Simon Goldhill; 4. Europa's sons: Roman perceptions of Cretan identity Ilaria Romeo; 5. The Ionians of Paphlagonia Stephen Mitchell; 6. Ancestry and identity in the Roman empire Christopher Jones; 7. Creating space for bicultural identity: Herodes Atticus commemorates Regilla Maud Gleason; 8. Being Termessian: local knowledge and identity politics in a Pisidian city Onno Van Nijf; 9. Epilogue Greg Woolf.