Pompeiian fresco, 1st c. AD
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HI202 ROMAN HISTORY
MWF 1.25-2.20 (Ladd 307)


Prof. Michael Arnush Ladd 209 x5462
marnush@skidmore.edu Hours: TuW 11


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Classics Department
Skidmore College

Historia vero testis temporum, lux veritatis, vita memoriae, magistra vitae, nuntia vetustatis

"For history is the witness of the past, the light of truth, the survival of memory, the teacher of life, the message of antiquity" (M. Tullius Cicero, de oratore ("On Oratory") 2.36.

Students in this course will explore the social, political, economic and artistic contributions of the Romans to western civilization. Using literary, historical and archaeological methodologies, students will examine the thousand years of Rome's history - from its foundation by the mythical Romulus, to its domination over the Mediterranean world and central Europe, to its slow and gradual decline. Through readings, discussions, essays and exams, students will demonstrate proficiency in the details that comprise Roman history, and an understanding of such broad topics as the elegance of Etruscan civilization, Roman relations with foreign nations, social and political institutions, imperialism, the golden age of Latin literature, and the spread of Christianity. Special emphasis is given to daily life in ancient Italy and the provinces.

Students in HI202 will demonstrate the ability to

  • read and analyze historical documents within their social contexts and evaluate the role of the individual in ancient cultures;
  • develop multi- and cross-cultural perspectives and apply them to gender, ethnic and social issues;
  • read critically and analyze closely literary texts and modern scholarship;
  • present orally - in class discussions - and in written form - on essays and exams - an argument supported by primary and secondary sources;
  • conduct research by traditional and digital methods and produce a 3000-word research paper at the end of the semester.