Alexander den store och hellenismen

Vem var Alexander den store? Hur kom han till makten? Hur var han som ledare? Vad tror man sig veta om honom i dag? Vilka områden erövrade han och hans arméer? Hur länge lyckades de behålla dem? Vad gjorde att de förlorade dem till slut?

Vad mer är intressant att veta om honom?

Som kommentarer till detta inlägg kan du lägga intressant material om Alexander den store och hellenismen som du hämtat ur olika källor. Glöm inte att skriva varifrån varje material kommer!

Tips: NE och Wikipedia är alltid bra ställen att börja på, men glöm inte bort att du också kan hitta spännande material via SO-rummet:!

Via SO-rummet kan man bland annat hitta den här serien filmklipp på YouTube:

Sista avsnittet handlar om Alexanders död och hur man ser på honom så här i efterhand:


  1. cwaste Said,

    februari 10, 2012@ 09:13      

    Så här står det i NE (Alexander den store., Nationalencyklopedin, hämtad 2012-02-10), men det finns mycket mer information att hämta där:

    Alexander den store (Alexander III), född 356 f.Kr., död 13 juni 323 f.Kr., kung i Makedonien från 336, erövrare av det persiska riket. Alexander den store var son till den makedonske kungen Filip II och Olympias från Epirus.

    Alexander den stores lärare var filosofen Aristoteles. Militär utbildning fick han genom att delta i faderns krigståg. Sedan Filip mördats 336 blev Alexander den store efter en kort maktkamp vald till hans efterträdare. Han övertog samtidigt faderns ledarställning i Grekland. Alexander den store inledde sin regering med att föra krig mot thrakiska stammar söder om Donau. Ett uppror i Grekland, som utgick från Thebe, tvingade honom avbryta fälttåget. När han nedkämpat upproret, jämnades Thebe med marken i avskräckande syfte.

    • cwaste Said,

      februari 10, 2012@ 09:23      

      Utdrag ur den enklare versionen av NE:s artiklar om Alexander:

      Alexander den store var en grekisk kung som genom krig blev härskare över världens då, på 330-talet före Kristus, största rike. Men han dog ung, bara 33 år gammal, och efter hans död splittrades riket.

      Alexander var son till kung Filip II av Makedonien, som hade erövrat hela Grekland. Han var bara 20 år när han efterträdde sin far. Det största hotet mot grekerna kom vid den här tiden från det mäktiga persiska riket, som bland annat hade lagt under sig grekiska städer på Mindre Asiens (nuvarande Turkiets) kust. Alexander samlade en här och tågade mot perserna. Han besegrade dem i flera slag, främst det vid Issos 333 före Kristus Han erövrade Egypten, där han grundade staden Alexandria, och därefter hela perserriket, ända bort till floden Indus i Indien.

      Samtidigt som han besegrade perserna hade Alexander också tagit starkt intryck av hur det persiska riket styrdes och av persisk kultur. Han upprättade nu ett makedonisk-persiskt rike, som han försökte smälta samman genom att låta sina män gifta sig med persiska kvinnor. Han var själv gift med en sådan, Roxane.

      Alexanders stora planer kunde dock aldrig förverkligas. Han blev nämligen hastigt sjuk och dog år 323 före Kristus. Flera av hans generaler ville nu ta makten. Följden blev att riket splittrades och generalerna grundade nya kungariken. En av dem var Ptolemaios, som blev härskare i Egypten. Den sista regenten av hans släkt var Kleopatra.

    • cwaste Said,

      februari 12, 2012@ 09:12      

      I Washington Post kan man läsa följande :

      ‘Alexander’: A Crying Shame
      Oliver Stone’s Historical Epic Never Has a Fighting Chance
      By Stephen Hunter
      Washington Post Staff Writer
      Wednesday, November 24, 2004; Page C01

      If you played a word-association game with ”Alexander the Great,” you’d probably come up with ”conqueror,” ”king,” ”warrior,” ”legend,” ”despot,” ”wastrel” or ”killer.” Unfortunately, Oliver Stone has chosen to build his epic of the Macedonian military genius around a word highly unlikely to make the list: ”crybaby.”

      In Stone’s view, this is a highly neurotic young man whose emotions, far from being repressed or disciplined as one would expect of a great soldier of the 4th century B.C., are worn on his sleeve, except, of course, that he doesn’t have sleeves, the shirt still being two millennia down the road. So he wears them on his wrist — and it’s a limp one.

      That’s the weirdest aspect of the extremely weird, if absurdly expensive, movie. Stone gives himself much credit of ”telling the truth” about Alexander’s bisexuality as if it’s some progressive badge of honor, but at the same time he can’t get away from the cruelest, least imaginative stereotyping: His Alexander, as expressed through the weepy histrionics of Colin Farrell, is more like a desperate housewife than a soldier. He’s always crying, his voice trembles, his eyes fill with tears. He’s much less interesting, except as a basket case, than Richard Burton’s Alexander of far less enlightened times — 1956 — in Robert Rossen’s ”Alexander the Great.” Burton got Alexander’s dissipation, but also his martial spirit; this was, after all, one of the great light-cavalry commanders of all time and a general who fought by leading his troops, sword in hand, not directing them from some safe hill. But in this one you think: Teri Hatcher could kick this twerp’s butt.

      In many ways the movie feels 50 years old already. It offers the standard 1950s melodramatic theory of Alexander’s sexual orientation: the scheming, sexualized, domineering mother, and the distant, uncaring father. So much for today’s theories of genetic predetermination. Yet at the same time, it fails to account for what was remarkable about Alexander, rather than what was not.

      His bisexuality, after all, is fairly commonplace in the world of this movie, while his will to conquer, and his skill in actually bringing it off, are not. But we never see what drives him. He never projects much in the way of ambition or vision; his fixation is always emotional, and the occasional attempts to match his motives to his accomplishments don’t resonate. Equally, we never sense his animal magnetism — Farrell showed more on Letterman on Monday night than he does in three hours of world conquest — or his leader’s charisma. He seems to motivate by pouting or holding his breath.

      The movie lacks any convincing ideas about Alexander. Stone advances but one, the notion that Alexander was an early multiculturalist, who wanted to ”unify” the globe. He seems not to recognize this as a standard agitprop of the totalitarian mind-set, always repulsive, but more so here in a movie that glosses over the boy-king’s frequent massacres. Conquerors always want ”unity,” Stalin a unity of Russia without kulaks, Hitler a Europe without Jews, Mao a China without deviationists and wreckers. All of these boys loved to wax lyrical about unity while they were breaking human eggs in the millions, and so it was with Alexander, who wanted world unity without Persians, Egyptians, Sumerians, Turks and Indians.

      It has the same biopic failings as any MGM product of the mid-’30s, in that it rushes from high point to high point, it synopsizes (he fought dozens of battles; it dramatizes only two) and it whitewashes truth (Alexander’s ruinous retreat from India gets about four seconds). The mechanism of the plot is trite: Ptolemy, one of A-team’s leading generals, now grown august and stentorian as only Anthony Hopkins can project august stentorianism, recalls the days of Alex as he dictates his memoirs. Yak yak yak, blah blah blah. Hopkins’s Ptolemy is a wordy old geezer, and his prose style, as crafted by Stone himself and co-writers Christopher Kyle and Laeta Kalogridis, has that kind of purple glaze Hollywood has always used to signify ”in olden times.” Other trite old-timey signifiers include too much Maybelline eyeliner (and I’m talking about the guys!), too many subtitles in a font that might be called Greco-Roman 36-point Bodoni, with V’s for U’s, and thunderous bad battle music that seems to have been composed only for trumpet and trombone.

      As a director of performance, Stone is hopeless. For one thing, Farrell so overacts with the wah-wah-wahs gushing that none of the other young Greek and Macedonian generals makes an impression. Since all these young men are stunningly handsome, in shaggy hair and cool clothes, it’s sort of like hanging out with a rock band. Musicians, however, don’t have to have personalities, while characters do.

      Alexander’s great love was said to be Hephaistion, who is played in the film by Jared Leto, but unless you know Jared Leto by face, even late in the movie you’ll have no idea which one he was. I thought he was this other guy, equally handsome, equally vapid, equally unmemorable, whom Alexander prongs with a spear in a drunken rage late in the movie. But that was some other guy.

      Then comes the moment when we Meet the Parents. Brother, talk about Christmas with the cranks! Dad — the Macedonian king Philip, from whom Alexander inherited the tiny empire he was to build into a gigantic one — is played by Val Kilmer in hearty barbarian mode. He seems to have wandered in from a remake of ”The Vikings,” shooting in the next Moroccan village down the coastline. Loved the one-eyed thing, which appears to be a Stone fetish. The movie is full to brimming with one-eyed men, which demonstrates two things: The Greek battle helmets had eye slots, and there was extra money in the makeup budget for putty.

      Then there’s Angelina Jolie as Mom. Really, words fail me here. But let’s try: Give this young woman the hands-down award for best impression of Bela Lugosi while hampered by a 38-inch bust line. Though everyone else in the picture speaks in some variation of a British accent, poor Jolie has been given the Transylvanian throat-sucker’s throaty, sibilant vowels, as well as a wardrobe of snakes. She represents the spirit of kitsch that fills the movie, and with all her crazed posturing and slinking, it’s more of a silent movie performance than one from the sound era. Theda Bara, call your agent.

      And finally, the battles. Hollywood should realize that these big tiff things aren’t nearly as impressive as they once were, particularly in the aftermath of three years of Iron Age combat apotheosized in the great ”Lord of the Rings” pictures; when you’ve seen Orcs and hobbits fighting for the future of the world, it’s a little hard to get excited about Persians and Greeks fighting over someone’s imperial hubris 2,300 years ago. To be fair, the film does a pretty good job of explaining and dramatizing the tactics of Gaugamela (thought to be near Mosul, Iraq, today), where the clever Alexander, with 40,000 men, outthought and outfought Darius III’s 200,000, including a daring cavalry strike (which Alexander himself led) that drove Darius from the field.

      But there’s nothing singular here. When you see what the Chinese are doing with action (in the upcoming ”House of Flying Daggers”) and even what younger and more inventive American directors are doing, these fights seem very much a part of the rest of the movie. It’s the same-old, same-old of charging into battle from half a century ago.

      Even amplified by CGI, which can multiply a thousand extras into 40,000, nothing in the war-making feels unique. We don’t learn anything new about this kind of fighting and the imagery — bigger in scale but not bigger in vision from the past — feels stale. The one fresh image, that of Alexander on horseback rearing at an enemy pasha on elephantback, has been diluted of its power by overexposure on television ads. Like every other second of more than 10,000 seconds in ”Alexander,” it doesn’t engage in the least.

      Alexander (173 minutes, at area theaters) is rated R for battle violence and sexual scenes and themes.

      © 2004 The Washington Post Company

    • cwaste Said,

      februari 12, 2012@ 09:18      

      Detta står att läsa på Radio Free Europe Radio Liberty :

      January 28, 2005
      World: Oliver Stone’s ‘Alexander’ Stirs Up Controversy
      by Golnaz Esfandiari

      American director Oliver Stone’s latest movie, ”Alexander,” has been met with negative reviews from critics in the U.S. and Europe. The three-hour-long epic, which cost an estimated 150 million dollars to make, purports to show the life of Alexander the Great, who in less than a decade conquered much of the ancient world. But some complain the movie is riddled with historical inaccuracies. The epic has also stirred controversy by portraying Alexander’s bisexuality.
      Prague, 28 January 2004 (RFE/RL) — Even before its release, Oliver Stone’s film ”Alexander” sparked controversy.

      While a group of Greek lawyers wanted to take legal action against the movie because they were upset about suggestions in the film that Alexander was bisexual, campaigners for homosexual rights criticized Stone for not making Alexander openly gay.

      Zoroastrian communities in the United States and Parsis in India got upset for different reasons. They noticed that in promos for the movie, the winged Zoroastrian symbol of Farohar or Fravahar was used in the background.

      Zoroastrians know Alexander as ”the Accursed” because during his conquest of the Persian Empire he burned Zoroastrian holy texts and scriptures.

      Kaveh Farrokh is an expert on the history and linguistics of Persia, particularly in the pre-Islamic era.

      ”One of the reasons we don’t know many aspects of Zoroastrian teachings is that people wrongly blamed it on the Arab invasion of the 7th century. In reality, we have to go back and look at Alexander’s invasion, which was extremely destructive, and many of the ‘magis,’ the Zoroastrians priests, were killed,” Farrokh says.

      Maneck Bhujwala, a Zoroastrian priest based in the United States, told RFE/RL in an e-mail that Zubin Mehta — an internationally renowned conductor of classical music and a member of India’s Parsi community — was able to talk directly with Stone and was able to get an agreement from Stone to stop the commercial.

      Since the release of the movie, some historians have expressed surprise and regret that some key events of the time, such as Alexander’s burning of the city of Persepolis, are overlooked.

      There are different historical accounts about the arson. Some say Alexander instigated it in revenge for the destruction caused by Persians in Greece in the 5th century before Christ. Other say Alexander did it while he was drunk, on the encouragement of a woman.

      Professor Robin Lane Fox, one of the world’s top experts on Hellenic studies and author of a book on Alexander the Great, advised Stone on the movie. He says the epic drama has a ”strong reference to history” and that including all the facts would have made the movie very long.

      However, some experts say there are historical mistakes in the movie.

      Farrokh says the portrayals of Persians and Greeks in the film are inaccurate. As an example, he mentions the battle of Gaugamela where Alexander the Great and his troops defeated the Persian army.
      Since the release of the movie, some historians have expressed surprise and regret that some key events of the time, such as Alexander’s burning of the city of Persepolis, are overlooked.

      ”Greek forces are typically shown very organized, disciplined, and so on, and what’s very disturbing is when the so-called Persians are shown confronting the Greeks, you see them turbaned. Turbans are not even a Persian item, and flies are seen circling their heads at one point. Their armies are totally disorganized. What is not known is that the Persians actually had uniforms. They marched in discipline, and music was actually used — trumpets and so on — to allow them to march in disciplined rank,” Farrokh says.

      Farrokh believes Persian women are also inaccurately portrayed in the film.

      In the movie, Alexander marries an Iranian woman, Roxanna, played by Rosario Dawson, who is black. Farrokh says having a black actress playing the role of Roxanna is like having Lucy Liu, an Asian American actress, portraying Queen Victoria of Britain.

      ”Roxanna itself is derived from old Iranian ‘rokh-shwan’ — ‘rokh’ means profile, ‘shwan’ means shiny-faced or of fair complexion. The face mask that Roxanna wears is totally inaccurate,” Farrokh says.

      Some Iranians living in the United States staged protests against the movie, which they consider to be one-sided. But Mehdi Zokayi, chief editor of an Iranian magazine in Los Angeles, says the protests were ineffective.

      ”I think the protests were very dispersed and didn’t last long. Some people, some media, wrote letters, e-mails and decided to show their protests. But since their actions was not correlated, it didn’t draw any attention. Some boycotted the movie, but I think many went to see the movie out of curiosity,” Zokayi says.

      ”Alexander” was first released in the United States late last year, where it earned a disappointing $34 million at the box office. It has been doing better since its foreign release earlier this month, earning some 90 million dollars so far.

      In Iran, where most Western movies are banned, there is little chance that ”Alexander the Great” will be shown in movie theaters.

      Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty © 2012 RFE/RL, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

    • cwaste Said,

      februari 12, 2012@ 09:21      

      Så här står det på :

      The good, the bad and the prejudiced: Oliver Stone’s Alexander.

      Bust of Alexander the Great, from Delos, now in the Louvre.
      There are many flaws in Oliver Stone’s movie Alexander and there’s no need to repeat what has been said so often before: the endless speeches, the flat characters, or the remarkable portrayal of Alexander’s homosexuality, which appears to have been either too much or not enough for the reviewers.
      Still, I have the impression that the most disturbing aspect of the movie has remained unmentioned: Stone and his historical adviser, Robin Lane Fox from Oxford University, offer an extremely one-sided picture of the war between Macedonia and Persia. It is based on western sources only, as if the Near Eastern studies of the last decades have offered nothing new. Now I will immediately admit that it is easy to exaggerate the importance of a discovery, but I think that in the last quarter of a century, we have indeed obtained something valuable. The cuneiform tablets from Babylonia, which are published slowly, offer contemporary, first-hand evidence. Ancient historians are currently witnessing a breakthrough comparable to the discovery of the scrolls of the Dead Sea. Stone and Lane Fox seem to be unaware of it.

      Or have they deliberately chosen to ignore it? It can be argued that the narrator of the movie is a European, Ptolemy, who cannot have been aware of Babylonian information. Not only is this untrue (many texts were immediately translated into Greek), but the movie also contains images of events at which Ptolemy cannot have been present. We are, therefore, not witnessing Ptolemy’s story, but a historical reconstruction. Stone and Lane Fox have left no opportunity unused to say that they were showing events as they really must have been, so I think that we are justified to judge them by this standard.

      What have the ignored Babylonian sources to offer? There is some specific information about Alexander. The Astronomical Diaries (and the Chronicles based on them) mention, for example, the course of the battle of Gaugamela, the dethronement of the Persian king Darius III Codomannus, the accession of Bessus, an execution and a satrap not recorded elsewhere, Alexander’s building projects, his preparations for a war against the Arabs, the date of his death (11 June 323), and the price of food when his army was in Babylon. Even more important is that the cuneiform texts offer general information. We now have a far better idea about Near Eastern society than thirty years ago.

      As a result, we can correct errors in the western sources. For example, the entire account of the battle of Gaugamela needs to be rewritten. The lunar eclipse of 20 September 331 was the worst of all possible omens and the soldiers of the Persian army knew that their king was doomed. When Alexander attacked these demoralized men, they almost immediately deserted their king. To exaggerate a bit: ”Gaugamela” was no battle at all, the Macedonians were butchering refugees. The story by the Greek historian Arrian of Nicomedia, in which Darius is presented as a coward, is simply wrong. The great king was deserted by his troops, not the other way round, as Stone and Lane Fox would have it.

      Or, to offer another illustration: Stone’s Babylon is some sort of ”Playboy Mansion” with a royal harem and belly dancers. Since the days of good old Herodotus, this is the usual way to represent the cultural capital of the Near East, and in many western languages, the word ”Babylon” has become shorthand for sexual scandal. However, there is simply no evidence for the prostitution mentioned by Herodotus and Curtius Rufus, or the royal harem with 365 concubines that Alexander is supposed to have taken over from king Darius. There are tens of thousands of cuneiform tablets (120,000 in the British Museum alone), and none of them offers any support for the reconstruction of Babylon that is offered by Stone and Lane Fox.

      Sometimes, a Babylonian source helps us recognize significant details in our Greek and Latin sources. One of the unpleasant surprises that the Babylonians experienced was the introduction of the rack. They had no word for it, so they used the rather clumsy expression ”ladder of interrogation”. Alexander’s excessive use of torture is merely hinted at in the classical sources but now appears to have been widely recognized as a distinguishing aspect of his policy. It’s not in the movie.

      What is disturbing about Alexander is that it offers a western image of a decadent Near East, full of cowardly kings and sensual women. No orientalist cliché is too grotesque. If Lane Fox had ignored thirty years of scholarship in his book on Pagans and Christians, his reputation as a serious scholar would have been damaged beyond repair. If Stone had used similar stereotypes to describe Jews, native Americans or Africans, he would have encountered a storm of indignation. Unfortunately, there is no Iranian Anti-Defamation League.

  2. cwaste Said,

    februari 10, 2012@ 09:19      

    Och här några ord om hellenismen:

    hellenismen, modern benämning på perioden 323–31 f.Kr. från Alexander den stores död till kejsar Augustus erövring av Egypten. Alexanders erövringar delades efter hans död upp på hans främsta generaler: Egypten under Ptolemaios I, det seleukidiska riket från Syrien och österut under Seleukos I samt Makedonien under Kassandros. Även Pergamon i nuvarande Turkiet blev en stormakt. Egypten hade en ledande intellektuell roll genom grundandet av biblioteket i Alexandria och dess vetenskapliga centrum, Mouseion. Förutom tekniska uppfinningar fanns en livaktig konstnärlig verksamhet, som djupt influerade romersk konst. Litteratur från området blev under hellenismen också viktig för romersk poesi, t.ex. Catullus, Vergilius och Horatius.

    Under hellenismen fortlevde en del klassiska filosofiska riktningar, t.ex. den platonska akademin, som dock fick en skeptisk inriktning. Athen förblev en nyckelort, men i centrum stod de nya filosofiska skolorna, stoicism och epikurism, två världsåskådningar som konkurrerade både med varandra och med samtida religiösa riktningar.


  3. Emely Said,

    februari 12, 2012@ 08:34      

    Vem var han? Alexander föddes 356 f.Kr. och dog 323 f.Kr. Han var kung i Makedonien.. Han var en av världens främsta fältherrar. Han förde även ut det grekiska språket och den grekiska kulturen, detta kallas hellenismen.
    Hur kom han till makten? Han ärvde makten efter sin far.
    Hur var han som ledare? Han hade god ledarförmåga. Han hade en förmåga att inspirera sina män att klara av olika prövningar och faror.
    Vad tror man sig veta om honom i dag? Man har hittat på så många historier om honom att man inte vet vilken som är den sanna.
    Vilka områden erövrade han och hans arméer? De erövrade delar av Persien och Egypten.
    Hur länge lyckades de behålla dem? Alexander lyckades behålla sina erövringar till sin död, då delade hans generaler upp områdena i fyra delar.
    Vad gjorde att de förlorade dem till slut? Alexanders död gjorde att de förlorade landområdena.

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