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HSTAM 302 A: Ancient Roman History

Summer Term: 
Meeting Time: 
MTWTh 9:10am - 11:20am
GWN 301
F. Mira Green
F. Mira Green

Syllabus Description:

61920.jpgHSTAM 302

History of Rome:

Foundations to Constantine


For Entire Syllabus, Please See: HSTAM 302 syllabus Summer 2018.pdf


HSTAM 302 is an introduction to the history of the Roman world from its foundations as a small hut village to the development of its empire through the reign of Constantine. After a brief look at the Italian communities that grew alongside Rome during the 8th-6th centuries BCE, we will study Rome's first two wars with Carthage, the advent of empire in the second century BCE, and the social, economic, and cultural effects of empire that played a role in the transformation of Rome’s republican system of government to that of the rule of the princeps. We will consider the struggles that brought Augustus (the first princeps) to power, the development of imperial institutions, the growth of the emperor’s power, and the conflict between the emperor and the senatorial class. We will also look at Roman perceptions of barbarians (those outside the empire) and then turn to the means by which those inside the empire were ruled. We will look at social life within the empire—citizenship and privilege, family and social life, and religious practices. In the last weeks of the course, we will consider the role that Christianity played in the transformation of the Roman empire. 


Course Objectives

  • Become familiar with major historical events of ancient Roman history
  • Develop historical analysis and familiarity with the types of evidence ancient historians use
  • Improve writing skills for argumentative essays in the discipline of history
  • Practice different formats for public speaking during discussion sections
  • Creatively adapt skills of historical analysis to new formats


Required Readings

Plutarch, Fall of the Roman Republic (Abbreviated below as FORR)

Apuleius, The Golden Ass (or Metamorphoses)

Suetonius, Twelve Caesars (abbreviated below as TC)

Tacitus, The Germania and The Agricola (in one volume of Penguin edition)

Course Reader (abbreviated CR below)


Catalog Description: 
Political, social, economic, and cultural development of Rome from the beginnings in the eighth century BC to the beginning of the Middle Ages.
GE Requirements: 
Individuals and Societies (I&S)
Last updated: 
October 17, 2018 - 9:07pm