For about five hundred years the history of Rome has been inextricably linked to the history of western civilization. Rome should not only be seen as the city-state that unified the Italian peninsula under a military, economic, political and social leadership, but also be remembered as the culture that was profoundly influenced by Etruscan civilization, which merged with it at the end of the first century B.C. This long process of cultural conquest and assimilation began with the traditional date of the conquest of the Veii by the Romans in 396 BC.
This course is a survey of Roman History from the Etruscan legacy on the origin of the city (eighth century BCE) to the collapse of the Western Empire in the fifth century AD. Students in this course will explore the social, political, economic and artistic contributions of the Romans to western civilization and the Italian Peninsula in particular. The course will investigate how the Roman empire developed into a Mediterranean network which, at its apex, stretched from Britain in the West to the Tigris and Euphrates in the East; and how it finally lost political and military control of its empire which broke apart into what became the states of Medieval Europe. The students will travel around the most important topics of this great adventure until the concept of Translatio Imperii when the Latin West left the imperial dignity to the young Byzantine political organism.
Field Trips connected with this course:
Rome, Sorrento, Naples & Pompeii (see SRISA Field Trips)