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COURSE NAME: "History of Ancient Rome and Italy"
SEMESTER & YEAR: Summer Session I 2017

INSTRUCTOR: Benedetta Bessi
EMAIL: [email protected]
HOURS: MTWTH 2:00-3:45 PM

This course surveys the history of ancient Rome and Italy, focusing on the origins and metamorphoses of Rome from its archaic foundations as an Italic-Latinate kingship to an imperial city. The course examines the establishment, expansion, and conflicts of the Republican period; the political and cultural revolution of the Augustan ‘Principate’; the innovations of the High Empire; and the transition into Late Antiquity. Course materials include the writings of ancient authors in translation (these may include Polybius, Sallust, Cicero, Livy, Augustus, Suetonius, and/or Tacitus) as well as modern historians and archaeologists, along with considerations of Roman art, architecture, and archaeology.
The objectives of this course are to explore and to better understand the history of ancient Rome from the earliest times down to the beginning of the decline of the Roman Empire.  
At the end of this class, the students will be familiar with the main events and characters of Roman history as well as with the main historiographical tools (primary sources, archaeological evidence, epigraphical documents etc.).

Book TitleAuthorPublisherISBN numberLibrary Call NumberComments
A Brief History of the RomansM. BoatwrightOxford University Press0199987556  

Midterm exam short open questions and essay20%
research paper 2000 word research paper with notes and bibliography on an aspect of social or cultural history (please check separate file on MYJCU)20%
in class presentation group oral presentation on a Roman monument or archaeological site 20%
final exam open questions and 2 essay questions30%
attendance and participation In order to be able to actively participate to class activities, students should come to each session well prepared and having read the chapter assigned for that day, display a proactive attitude as well as avoid disruptive and distracting behaviors including the inappropriate use of laptops, iphones, cells. etc. 10%

AWork of this quality directly addresses the question or problem raised and provides a coherent argument displaying an extensive knowledge of relevant information or content. This type of work demonstrates the ability to critically evaluate concepts and theory and has an element of novelty and originality. There is clear evidence of a significant amount of reading beyond that required for the cour
BThis is highly competent level of performance and directly addresses the question or problem raised.There is a demonstration of some ability to critically evaluatetheory and concepts and relate them to practice. Discussions reflect the student’s own arguments and are not simply a repetition of standard lecture andreference material. The work does not suffer from any major errors or omissions and provides evidence of reading beyond the required assignments.
CThis is an acceptable level of performance and provides answers that are clear but limited, reflecting the information offered in the lectures and reference readings.
DThis level of performances demonstrates that the student lacks a coherent grasp of the material.Important information is omitted and irrelevant points included.In effect, the student has barely done enough to persuade the instructor that s/he should not fail.
FThis work fails to show any knowledge or understanding of the issues raised in the question. Most of the material in the answer is irrelevant.



Please note that since a portion of the grade for the course will be based not only on each student's participation, but also on attendance, it is extremely important that you not only participate in class, but that you attend on a regular basis. Attendance will be taken at each scheduled class session. Each unjustified absence after the second one will affect your final grade.
As stated in the university catalog, any student who commits an act of academic dishonesty will receive a failing grade on the work in which the dishonesty occurred. In addition, acts of academic dishonesty, irrespective of the weight of the assignment, may result in the student receiving a failing grade in the course. Instances of academic dishonesty will be reported to the Dean of Academic Affairs. A student who is reported twice for academic dishonesty is subject to summary dismissal from the University. In such a case, the Academic Council will then make a recommendation to the President, who will make the final decision.
John Cabot University does not discriminate on the basis of disability or handicap. Students with approved accommodations must inform their professors at the beginning of the term. Please see the website for the complete policy.



Week 1  

Mon. May 22: Introduction of course and course material. 

Geographical and historical background.

Tues. May 23: Italy in the Early Iron Age and the origins of Rome 

textbook, ch. 1

Wed. May 24:  Rome's First Centuries

textbook, ch. 2

Thurs. May 25: Rome and Italy in the Fourth Century

textbook, ch. 3

Week 2  

Mon. May  29: Bibliographical research workshop

Tues. May 30: The Beginnings of a Mediterranean Empire

textbook, ch. 4

Wed. May 31: Italy and Empire

textbook, ch. 5

Thurs. June 1: Italy Threatened, Enfranchised, Divided

textbook, ch. 6

Week 3  

Mon. June  5: The Domination of Sulla and his legacy

textbook, ch. 7

Tues. June 6: End of the Republic: Caesar's dictatorship 

textbook, ch. 8 

Wed. June 7:  Augustus and the Transformation of the Roman world

Thurs. 8: midterm exam  

 Week 4  

Mon. June 12: The  Julio Claudian

textbook, ch. 9  

Tues. June 13:  The Flavians, Nerva, Trajan

textbook, ch. 10

textbook, ch. 11 (up to p. 234)

Wed. June 14: Hadrian, Antoninus Pius,

textbook, ch. 11 (from p. 234), ch. 12 (to p. 248)

Thurs. June 15: Marcus Aurelius, Commodus 

textbook, ch 12 (to p. 256)

Week 5  

Mon. June 19: The Severan dynasty and the third century crisis

textbook, ch. 12 (from p. 256), ch. 13 (to p. 278) 

Tues. June 20: Diocletian  and the tetrarchy

textbook, ch. 13 (to p. 287)  

Wed. June 21: Constantine and the advent of Christianity

textbook ch. 13 (to the end)

Thurs. June 25:  extra space for presentation and wrap up  

Friday June 26: final exam