CLAS 224 Roman Archaeology and Material Culture

Last offered Fall 2013

Cross Listed as HIST224, ANTH235, ARTH235
This course examines the development of Roman archaeology and material culture from the early Iron Age, ca. 1000 BCE, to the end of the reign of Constantine in 337 CE. The primary goal of the course is to help students understand the social and historical context in which Roman material culture was created and used. We will consider a variety of evidence from across the empire, including monumental and domestic architecture, wall painting, mosaics, sculpture, coins and inscriptions. Special emphasis will be placed on the city of Rome; however, we will also look at other important urban centers, such as Pompeii, Aphrodisias and Lepcis Magna. Roman art and architecture were not the product of any single people or culture, but rather the hybrid synthesis of complex cultural negotiations between the Romans and their colonial subjects (i.e., Greeks, Jews, Celts, etc.). Class discussions will focus on issues related to gender, ethnicity and cultural identity in the Roman Empire. For example, we will explore what it meant to be "Roman" in terms of language, ethnicity and cultural institutions. We will also discuss how Roman elites used material culture to convey political messages and social status in the imperial hierarchy, as well as the legacy of Roman art and architecture in the modern world.
Class Format: lecture/discussion
Requirements/Evaluation: evaluation will be based on classroom performance, quizzes, one 8- to 10-page paper, a midterm, and a final exam
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Prerequisites: none
Enrollment Preference: majors or prospective majors in Classics, History, Art History, and Anthropology
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Distribution Notes: meets Division 1 requirement if registration is under CLAS or ARTH; meets Division 2 requirement if registration is under HIST or ANTH
Divisional Attributes: Division I
Other Attributes: ARTH pre-1400 Courses,ARTH pre-1800 Courses, HIST Group C Electives - Europe and Russia,HIST Group G Electives - Global History
Enrollment Limit: 40
Expected Enrollment: 30
Class Number: 1688
CLAS 224 LEC Roman Archlogy&Material Cultre Division 1: Languages and the Arts Benjamin B. Rubin
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