East Versus West: The Persian Wars and Their Lasting Impact
Taught by Andrew Coletti
Andrew Coletti is an educator and lifelong history/mythology/fantasy nerd who has been known to throw ancient dinner parties just for fun. Besides cooking and teaching he loves traveling, writing, and keeping a variety of pets. Follow his recreations of ancient recipes on passtheflamingo.com, or @passtheflamingo on Instagram and Twitter.
In the 5th century BCE, the world’s largest empire sent troops to a remote province to put down a rebellion. The empire was Persia, and the province was Ancient Greece. This was the beginning of the Persian Wars, two conflicts that would change the landscape of the ancient and modern worlds alike.
For the first time, the fractious cities of Greece would put aside their differences to unite against a common enemy. Their newfound unity would lead the Greeks to become a dominant power with a far-reaching legacy, yet it would also drive them to define themselves in opposition to the rest of the world, creating an “us vs. them” mentality that laid the groundwork for centuries of international conflict. The Persian Wars didn’t just change the course of history: the study of history was invented in order to understand the Persian Wars.
In this class, we will examine the Persian Wars from beginning to end, with a focus on how this ancient international clash influenced and continues to influence society and culture.
This class is a general historical overview--no prior knowledge is required!