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Alexandria the Cosmopolis

A global perspective

Hélène Fragaki, Marie-Dominique Nenna and Miguel John Versluys (eds.)
01 December 2022
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Hellenistic-Roman Alexandria is often characterized as a cosmopolis; a city that would represent the quintessential ‘cultural crossroads’ of the ancient world. The aim of this volume is to critically discuss, unwrap and develop this idea. After a set of (theoretical) introductions, first the network Alexandria was part of is explored in a more global, Afro-Eurasian sense than is traditionally done. What about Alexandria’s connections with China, India, Central Asia, the Arabian Peninsula, the African Sahara and (western) Europe? Second, the relation between the global node that was Alexandria and the many processes of innovation that characterized the city during the Hellenistic-Roman era are investigated through a variety of specifically selected case studies: from medicine to poetry and from the city’s famous tombs to its exotic animals. Global dynamics prove to be at the core of Hellenistic-Roman Alexandria and its innovative character.

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