Many scholars have analyzed Greek and Roman attitudes toward other ethnic groups as characterized by defamation. More harshly, "the invention of racism in classical antiquity" has recently been identified. Even more recently, a more nuanced picture has been developed, in which Greek and Roman perceptions of foreigners allow appreciation and admiration. How did the Athenians, Spartans, other Greeks, Romans, and different ethnic groups living under Roman rule define themselves in contrast to as well as in association with other ethnic groups? What were the underlying motivations behind these groups? conflict and cooperation with other ethnic groups? To what extent might ethnic origin-stories have begun as justifications for domination (or being dominated)?