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Property rights and democratic values in Bronze Age and Archaic Greece

  • Kyriazis, Nicholas
  • Economou, Emmanouel/Marios/Lazaros

In the present essay we introduce the concept of macroculture as a complex of mutually supporting values, norms and beliefs in various areas of human activity, like war, religion, politics, athletics, etc. in a model. Then, by applying the concept of bounded rationality, we analyse how some macrocultures that are favorable or the ‘precondition’ for the emergence of democracy and institutions develop, in particular property rights, that foster economic development. We analyze this for Bronze Age and Archaic Greece, as being the historical case where such a macroculture favorable to democracy and stable property rights first emerged. Our main findings indicate that during Mycenaean and Archaic age period, the emergence of various elements of macroculture, in warfare, religion, city-state environment and athletic games evolved into similar proto-democratic values leading to the establishment of democracy as a political phenomenon in Classical Greece.

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Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 42399.

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Date of creation: 06 Sep 2012
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Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:42399
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  1. Pitsoulis, Athanassios, 2011. "The egalitarian battlefield: Reflections on the origins of majority rule in archaic Greece," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 27(1), pages 87-103, March.
  2. Christoph A. Schaltegger & Benno Torgler, 2009. "Was Weber Wrong? A Human Capital Theory of Protestant Economic History: A Comment on Becker and Woessmann," School of Economics and Finance Discussion Papers and Working Papers Series 248, School of Economics and Finance, Queensland University of Technology.
  3. North, Douglass C, 1978. "Structure and Performance: The Task of Economic History," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 16(3), pages 963-78, September.
  4. Nicholas Kyriazis & Michel Zouboulakis, 2004. "Democracy, Sea Power and Institutional Change: An Economic Analysis of the Athenian Naval Law," European Journal of Law and Economics, Springer, vol. 17(1), pages 117-132, January.
  5. Solow, Robert M, 1985. "Economic History and Economics," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 75(2), pages 328-31, May.
  6. Nicholas Kyriazis, 2009. "Financing the Athenian state: public choice in the age of Demosthenes," European Journal of Law and Economics, Springer, vol. 27(2), pages 109-127, April.
  7. Frey, Bruno S & Buhofer, Heinz, 1988. "Prisoners and Property Rights," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 31(1), pages 19-46, April.
  8. Carl Hampus Lyttkens, 1997. "A Rational-Actor Perspective on the Origin of Liturgies in Ancient Greece," Journal of Institutional and Theoretical Economics (JITE), Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen, vol. 153(3), pages 462-, September.
  9. George Halkos & Nickolas Kyriazis, 2010. "The Athenian economy in the age of Demosthenes: path dependence and change," European Journal of Law and Economics, Springer, vol. 29(3), pages 255-277, June.
  10. Vromen, Jack J., 2011. "Routines as multilevel mechanisms," Journal of Institutional Economics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 7(02), pages 175-196, June.
  11. Bitros, George C. & Karayiannis, Anastassios D., 2008. "Values and institutions as determinants of entrepreneurship in ancient Athens," Journal of Institutional Economics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 4(02), pages 205-230, August.
  12. Lazaric, Nathalie, 2011. "Organizational routines and cognition: an introduction to empirical and analytical contributions," Journal of Institutional Economics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 7(02), pages 147-156, June.
  13. Robert Fleck & F. Hanssen, 2009. "“Rulers ruled by women”: an economic analysis of the rise and fall of women’s rights in ancient Sparta," Economics of Governance, Springer, vol. 10(3), pages 221-245, July.
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