How can we recreate the past, and what do our visions of the past say about our present moment? This course investigates these questions and more by examining the representation of the ancient Roman world in modern media. In class we will view and analyze a series of classic films to explore topics in Roman culture and history, including Spartacus’ heroic battle for freedom, the careers of such titanic figures as Caesar, Cleopatra, and Augustus, and the persecution of early Christians by the emperor Nero. We will discuss the films in tandem with primary sources from the ancient world and scholarship from the field of Classical Studies, as a springboard for student research into the widerworld of ancient Rome and the many other shows, movies, and video games it has spawned. Our topics of exploration will include daily life, literature, architecture, ethnicity, gender, religion, philosophy, slavery, military life, gladiatorial games, and other areas of interest. Counts toward Civilization or Expression requirement. Counts toward the Classical Studies minor.

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