Episode 44: "Us" & "Them" in the Ancient & Anglo-Saxon Worlds

What words did the Greeks, Romans, and Anglo-Saxons use to talk about different groups of people? What differences did they think were important? How do those compare to modern conceptions of ethnicity, national identity, or race? We try to give some basic background on this complicated question, starting with the etymology of the vocabulary and addressing some of the ways differences were conceptualized.

Show Notes

Full transcript of this episode


Video on the Anglo-Saxon Invasion, collaboration with Jabzy

Ethnicity in Herodotus--The Honest Entry

How is the Ancient Mediterranean Diverse If Everyone There Is "White"?

“Black Odysseus, White Caesar: When Did "White People" Become "White"?” James H. Dee. The Classical Journal. Vol. 99, No. 2 (Dec., 2003 - Jan., 2004), pp. 157-167

“Did ancient identity depend on ethnicity? A preliminary probe” Erich Gruen. Phoenix. Vol. 67, No. 1/2 (2013), pp. 1-22.

Were Medieval People Racist?

“Medieval and Modern Concepts of Race and Ethnicity” Robert Bartlett.

Caitlin Green’s blog, for general evidence of diversity in Britain

Race and Ethnicity in Anglo-Saxon Literature. Stephen Harris, Taylor & Francis, 2003.

Where the the term "White People" come from?

Colorlines in Classical North Africa


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Episode 19: Beef

We chat about the Norman French influence on Anglo-Saxon words for animals and meat, the powerful emotional and political aspects of the words we use for food, and then delve into Latin technical terms for farmyard animals, ending off with Virgil's pastoral poems, the Eclogues.

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Show Notes

Classy Little Podcast

Roman Colour Thesaurus – Caroline Lawrence (Roman Mysteries)


Beefeater cocktails