Level of study Second Year
Credit value 20
Semester Scheduled 2012-13, 1 & 2
Pre-requisite modules none
Other pre-requisites none
The Late Antique period is one of transition in Europe and the Middle East. It is a period when old assumptions about the relationship between man and God/gods, man and the state, and man and the city were partly re-written. This module will examine this key period of transition for the Roman and Persian empires and attempt to come to conclusions about the nature and extent of this evolution.
On this module you will:
Examine the period of the third to sixth centuries AD using a wide range of sources to help reconstruct late antique societies including literary material, inscriptions, archaeological material and art
Examine a range of states including: the Roman Empire, the Sasanian kingdom, the Germanic tribes
Examine the imperial court including emperors (Diocletian, Constantine and Julian will also be focussed on), key personnel and eunuchs
Examine key developments in state and personal religion in the Roman and Persian states. We will assess the rate at which Christianity replaced paganism in the Roman empire, its use in state propaganda and its effects on society. We will look at Sasanian Persian use of Zoroastrianism and its relationship with Christianity. We will also examine the construction of heresy and apostasy including Manichaeism. We will examine the effect of Christianisation on family and gender structures.
Examine urban societies and changes in that focussing particularly on Rome and Constantinople but also embracing other cities such as Carthage and Aphrodisias.
Examine the ideologies of outsider groups
The examination of these societies will be set with a clearly defined chronological framework and will be structured so that you can engage with both staff and other students on key aspects of late antique society.