The Unexpected Consequences of War. Thucydides on the Relationship between War, Civil War and the Degradation of Language

Dino Piovan


In this paper I intend to provide an analysis of Thucydides’s account of war in the third section of his historical work (3.82-83). Despite some of his early commentators accused him of a certain obscurity, the notions of polemos and stasis he introduces in this text deserve to be discussed and can give a number of insights into the problem of civil war in Western history. My core argument is that there is a clear analogy between Thucydides’s concept of stasis, from one hand, and Simone Weil’s reflexions on totalitarianism and Klemperer’s notebook on Nazi language, from the other hand. In this perspective, not only violence but also propaganda as a manipulation of language are important characteristics of stasis.

Palabras clave

Thucydides; Political Violence; Civil War; Totalitarianism; Fascism

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ISSN de la edición impresa: 1575-6823
ISSN digital: 2340-2199
Depósito legal: SE 235-2015
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