CLAS 2008 - Life in the Golden Age of Rome

North Terrace Campus - Semester 1 - 2018

In this course we will examine the history of key features of Roman cultural and social life during the 'golden age' of imperial Rome in the second century AD. We begin with a review of imperial expansion in the later first century AD, using the historian Tacitus both as a source for Roman views on their own imperialism and as an example of an historical genre that emphasised empirical data rather than overt political glorification of empire. We will then explore select intellectual and literary contributions of the late first and second centuries AD through the filter of 'fact and fiction'. This is the century of a developed interest in the application of empiricism to medicine and industry; an intense interest in the surrounding (conquered) natural world. It is also the century of the first 'science fiction' novel and more broadly of fiction-writing as a fully-developed and highly-prized literary genre. The contributions of Roman provincials to this impressive and popular cultural flowering will be discussed by detailed studies of works in the tutorial programme. Lastly, we will look at the social fabric of mainstream Roman society during this period: the nature of the Roman household, including marriage, romance and divorce. Using both legal texts and a selection of the literary texts already studied, we will also consider the position and role of slaves in the domestic life of Romans.

  • General Course Information
    Course Details
    Course Code CLAS 2008
    Course Life in the Golden Age of Rome
    Coordinating Unit Classics
    Term Semester 1
    Level Undergraduate
    Location/s North Terrace Campus
    Units 3
    Contact Up to 3 hours per week
    Available for Study Abroad and Exchange Y
    Prerequisites At least 12 units of Level I undergraduate study including at least 3 units of Level I Classics courses
    Incompatible CLAS 2036
    Course Description In this course we will examine the history of key features of Roman cultural and social life during the 'golden age' of imperial Rome in the second century AD. We begin with a review of imperial expansion in the later first century AD, using the historian Tacitus both as a source for Roman views on their own imperialism and as an example of an historical genre that emphasised empirical data rather than overt political glorification of empire.
    We will then explore select intellectual and literary contributions of the late first and second centuries AD through the filter of 'fact and fiction'. This is the century of a developed interest in the application of empiricism to medicine and industry; an intense interest in the surrounding (conquered) natural world. It is also the century of the first 'science fiction' novel and more broadly of fiction-writing as a fully-developed and highly-prized literary genre. The contributions of Roman provincials to this impressive and popular cultural flowering will be discussed by detailed studies of works in the tutorial programme.
    Lastly, we will look at the social fabric of mainstream Roman society during this period: the nature of the Roman household, including marriage, romance and divorce. Using both legal texts and a selection of the literary texts already studied, we will also consider the position and role of slaves in the domestic life of Romans.
    Course Staff

    Course Coordinator: Professor Han Baltussen

    This course is co-taught by Prof. Han Baltussen and Dr Margaret O'Hea

    Contact details and consultation times will be made available online in MyUni for this course.
    Course Timetable

    The full timetable of all activities for this course can be accessed from Course Planner.

    Two lectures per week for 12 weeks and one tutorial per week for 10 weeks, starting in Week 2.
  • Learning Outcomes
    Course Learning Outcomes
    1 demonstrate a familiarity with primary sources for understanding the history of social and cultural institutions within Rome from the Flavian to Severan periods
    2 demonstrate a scholarly approach to and methodology for historical interpretation of texts and material evidence
    3 demonstrate a familiarity with problems and issues in the study of Roman life, culture and literature from the Flavian to the Severan periods
    4 engage productively and respectfully with their peers via problem solving and the sharing of information
    5 use learning technologies relevant to the University’s learning environment
    University Graduate Attributes

    This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop the Graduate Attribute(s) specified below:

    University Graduate Attribute Course Learning Outcome(s)
    Deep discipline knowledge
    • informed and infused by cutting edge research, scaffolded throughout their program of studies
    • acquired from personal interaction with research active educators, from year 1
    • accredited or validated against national or international standards (for relevant programs)
    1, 3
    Critical thinking and problem solving
    • steeped in research methods and rigor
    • based on empirical evidence and the scientific approach to knowledge development
    • demonstrated through appropriate and relevant assessment
    2, 4
    Teamwork and communication skills
    • developed from, with, and via the SGDE
    • honed through assessment and practice throughout the program of studies
    • encouraged and valued in all aspects of learning
    4
    Intercultural and ethical competency
    • adept at operating in other cultures
    • comfortable with different nationalities and social contexts
    • Able to determine and contribute to desirable social outcomes
    • demonstrated by study abroad or with an understanding of indigenous knowledges
    1-4
    Self-awareness and emotional intelligence
    • a capacity for self-reflection and a willingness to engage in self-appraisal
    • open to objective and constructive feedback from supervisors and peers
    • able to negotiate difficult social situations, defuse conflict and engage positively in purposeful debate
    4
  • Learning Resources
    Required Resources
    Textbook is:
    Garnsey, P. et al. (1998 or later edn) The Roman Empire. Economy, Society and Culture. Berkeley: University of California Press.

    Other primary works will be available via MyUni.
    Readings for tutorials will be available either from the BSL or online in MyUni.  



    Recommended Resources
    Reading lists, web-links, library resources, essay and study guide along with referencing guides will be on MyUni for this course.



    Online Learning
    Reading lists, web-links, library resources, essay and study guide along with referencing guides will be on MyUni for this course. Most will be available at the start of semester. Audio lecture recordings will be rolled out over the semester.



  • Learning & Teaching Activities
    Learning & Teaching Modes
    Two lectures per week, with weekly tutorials starting in the second week. Most tutorials will deepen and extend students' understanding of topics from the lectures and textbooks; some tutorials will  broaden students' perspectives, dealing with areas which lectures cannot cover.



    Workload

    The information below is provided as a guide to assist students in engaging appropriately with the course requirements.

    WORKLOAD TOTAL HOURS
    12 weeks x 3 structured learning hours (2 lectures + 1 hr tutorial)  36 hours per semester
    4 hours' reading per week 48 hours per semester
    2 hours' research per week 24 hours per semester
    4 hours' assignment preparation per week 48 hours per semester
    Learning Activities Summary
    Lecture topics will vary slightly from year to year; a precise guide will be available at the start of semester on MyUni. They will, however, cover the following in lectures and tutorial programme:

    Module 1 (weeks 1-3)      Tacitus and the concept of imperialism from the late 1st c AD
                                            The “Five Good Emperors”

    Module 2 (weeks 4-8)     Rome’s Golden Age: The Second Sophistic Period
                                           Fact and Fiction in Roman Thought / The Roman novel
                                           Lucian, Aulus Gellius and Apuleius
                                           Second Sophistic Influence on Knowledge / The Roman Encyclopedia

    Module 3 (weeks 9-12)   Roman society in the Golden Age:  Slavery
                                           Slaves and the Roman Family
                                           Marriage, divorce and succession
                                           Emperors and Empresses as exemplars
    Small Group Discovery Experience
    Our tutorial programme is embedded with Small Group Discovery work  throughout the semester. This includes - but is not
    restricted to - analysing, discussing and presenting primary material in small groups.

  • Assessment

    The University's policy on Assessment for Coursework Programs is based on the following four principles:

    1. Assessment must encourage and reinforce learning.
    2. Assessment must enable robust and fair judgements about student performance.
    3. Assessment practices must be fair and equitable to students and give them the opportunity to demonstrate what they have learned.
    4. Assessment must maintain academic standards.

    Assessment Summary
    Assessment Task Task Type Due Weighting Learning Outcome
    1 x 500 word tutorial summary Formative and Summative

    By the following Monday after the relevant week (online)

    10% 1-3, 4-5
    1 x 1200 word tutorial paper Formative and Summative On the Monday of the relevant week (online) 20% 1-3
    1 x 2250 word 
    research essay
    Summative See MyUni 30% 1-3
    Exam Summative During university exam period. 40% 1-3
    Assessment Related Requirements
    Regular attendance is required for both lectures and tutorials.



    Assessment Detail
    2250 word essay: students will be required to write a 2250-word essay on a topic provided at the start of semester on MyUni (reading list provided). The essay will be submitted on MyUni  = 30% weighting

    Tutorial paper:  students present and write up a tutorial paper ca 1200 words from questions provided in the tutorial programme (on MyUni with reading list provided).   = 20% weighting

    Tutorial summary:  students present a 500-word summary of a chosen topic from the tutorial programme online via MyUni. It shall be
    selected from a different half of the course than the written tutorial paper. = 10 % weighting

    Exam:  a  2-hour exam in the form of essay-type answers to be held at the end of semester - 40% weighting
    Submission
    All details of submission will be available on MyUni at the start of semester.
    Course Grading

    Grades for your performance in this course will be awarded in accordance with the following scheme:

    M10 (Coursework Mark Scheme)
    Grade Mark Description
    FNS   Fail No Submission
    F 1-49 Fail
    P 50-64 Pass
    C 65-74 Credit
    D 75-84 Distinction
    HD 85-100 High Distinction
    CN   Continuing
    NFE   No Formal Examination
    RP   Result Pending

    Further details of the grades/results can be obtained from Examinations.

    Grade Descriptors are available which provide a general guide to the standard of work that is expected at each grade level. More information at Assessment for Coursework Programs.

    Final results for this course will be made available through Access Adelaide.

  • Student Feedback

    The University places a high priority on approaches to learning and teaching that enhance the student experience. Feedback is sought from students in a variety of ways including on-going engagement with staff, the use of online discussion boards and the use of Student Experience of Learning and Teaching (SELT) surveys as well as GOS surveys and Program reviews.

    SELTs are an important source of information to inform individual teaching practice, decisions about teaching duties, and course and program curriculum design. They enable the University to assess how effectively its learning environments and teaching practices facilitate student engagement and learning outcomes. Under the current SELT Policy (http://www.adelaide.edu.au/policies/101/) course SELTs are mandated and must be conducted at the conclusion of each term/semester/trimester for every course offering. Feedback on issues raised through course SELT surveys is made available to enrolled students through various resources (e.g. MyUni). In addition aggregated course SELT data is available.

  • Student Support
  • Policies & Guidelines
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