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Unit information: Roman Imperial Culture in 2015/16

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Unit name Roman Imperial Culture
Unit code CLAS10029
Credit points 20
Level of study C/4
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 1 (weeks 1 - 12)
Unit director Dr. Laura Jansen
Open unit status Open




School/department Department of Classics & Ancient History
Faculty Faculty of Arts

Description including Unit Aims

This unit explores some of the most dynamic literary, artistic, and intellectual achievements of the Roman Empire. With a focus on culture as the material capital of the new empire, the unit ranges across Roman epic, elegy, tragedy and epistolary, intellectual, scientific and architectural writings, as well as visual art. It studies the relationship between texts and images in the expression of cultural values, and it examines a series of major themes in Roman views of identity, morality, politics, religion and aesthetics. The unit is meant for those who want an introduction to the cultural discourses of the Empire from Augustus onwards.

Intended Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, students will:

1. Have developed knowledge of a range of key sources for this theme in antiquity

2. Have developed the ability to analyse and make critical connections between these sources, and to situate them within their wider historical context

3. Be able to identify, assess and apply a range of different methodological approaches to the material

4. Be able to use the knowledge acquired in lectures and their own researches to construct coherent, relevant and persuasive arguments on different aspects of the subject.

Teaching Information

Weekly 1 hour lectures + Weekly 1 hour seminars

Assessment Information

One course work essay of 2,000 words 50%; one written examination (one and a half hours) 50%.

Reading and References

Harrison S. (2005), A Companion to Latin Literature. Blackwell. Oxford

Potter D. S. (2006) (ed.), A Companion to The Roman Empire. Blackwell. Oxford

Steward, P. (2011), Statues in the Roman Society. Representation and Response. Studies

in Ancient Culture and Representation. Oxford

Taplin, O. (2001) (ed.), Literature in the Roman World: A New perspective. Oxford.

Zanker, P. (2007, 5th edition), The Power of Images in the Age of Augustus. Michigan.