Anthony Weiner, John Edwards and John Ensign are examples of an ancient Greek crime of hubris, overweening pride. You’ll think of many other men in public life. The Greek term referred to actions that shamed or humiliated the victim for the gratification of the abuser, most evident among the powerful and rich. The term was also used in Greek tragedies for those whose pride led them to challenge the gods, resulting in disaster for the arrogant human. We’ve been struggling with hubris for centuries, seemingly without learning from past mistakes. Another Greek concept at play here is narcissism.
June 7, 2011