CLAS 3028 - Cities Silk & Spice Routes in Roman Archaeology

North Terrace Campus - Semester 1 - 2019

The world of the Roman Empire was culturally and geographically diverse with a 'globalised' economy. This course explores this internationalised world, and the effects of cultural interactions between Rome and her neighbours and subjects by focussing on the archaeological evidence from a selection of cities along the famous silk and spice route(s) that led eastwards, beyond the borders of the Empire. What does the rich cultural diversity of cities such as Dura-Europus in Syria or Alexandria in Egypt tell us about Roman provincial life, about the processes by which cultures evolve? The first part of the course will provide background to two themes: 1) the Hellenistic origins of these cities, and 2) 'mainstream' trends in Roman material culture of the 1st-3rd centuries AD. We will then explore in detail the architecture, sculpture, pottery and other forms of material culture from cities made famous by the spice and silk routes. These include Palmyra, Dura-Europus, Petra and of course Alexandria. Sites beyond Rome's borders may also be included (such as Hatra). Some classes will be held in the Museum of Classical Archaeology. Students will benefit from having completed The Art and Archaeology of Rome, and a certain basic knowledge of the earlier period will be assumed. Note that regular attendance at lectures and tutorials is compulsory, since all contain images which may be included in exams.

  • General Course Information
    Course Details
    Course Code CLAS 3028
    Course Cities Silk & Spice Routes in Roman Archaeology
    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 6 units of Level II undergraduate study including at least 3 units of Level II Classics courses
    Incompatible CLAS 2028
    Course Description The world of the Roman Empire was culturally and geographically diverse with a 'globalised' economy. This course explores this internationalised world, and the effects of cultural interactions between Rome and her neighbours and subjects by focussing on the archaeological evidence from a selection of cities along the famous silk and spice route(s) that led eastwards, beyond the borders of the Empire. What does the rich cultural diversity of cities such as Dura-Europus in Syria or Alexandria in Egypt tell us about Roman provincial life, about the processes by which cultures evolve?
    The first part of the course will provide background to two themes: 1) the Hellenistic origins of these cities, and 2) 'mainstream' trends in Roman material culture of the 1st-3rd centuries AD. We will then explore in detail the architecture, sculpture, pottery and other forms of material culture from cities made famous by the spice and silk routes. These include Palmyra, Dura-Europus, Petra and of course Alexandria. Sites beyond Rome's borders may also be included (such as Hatra). Some classes will be held in the Museum of Classical Archaeology. Students will benefit from having completed The Art and Archaeology of Rome, and a certain basic knowledge of the earlier period will be assumed. Note that regular attendance at lectures and tutorials is compulsory, since all contain images which may be included in exams.
    Course Staff

    Course Coordinator: Dr Margaret O'Hea

    Contact details and weekly consultation hours will be posted up on MyUni for this course.
    Course Timetable

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

  • Learning Outcomes
    Course Learning Outcomes
    On successful completion of this course students will be able to:
    1 identify the key elements of material culture - art, architecture and artefacts - which are typical of the cultures of cities in the eastern Roman empire along the silk and spice routes, from the 1st c BC to (approximately) the 3rd century AD
    2 demonstrate a scholarly approach to and apply appropriate  methodology for the archaeological interpretation of  material evidence
    3 understand the key problems and issues in identifying the nature and role of the so-called “silk route” and “spice route” out of the Roman empire
    4 address wider questions of the ancient Roman economy, cultural interactions and the processes of cultural change using archaeological evidence
    5 engage productively and respectfully with their peers via problem solving and the sharing of information
    6 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)
    1-4, 6
    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
    5
    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
    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
    5
  • Learning Resources
    Required Resources
    Textbook:
    Butcher, K. (2004 or later edn) Roman Syria and the Near East

    Students are also expected to use as their background reading throughout the course the following book which is available to download as an e-book via the library:

    Ball, W. (2002) Rome in the East. The transformation of an empire.
    Recommended Resources
    Other online material will be made available in MyUni at the start of semester.
    Online Learning
    Reading material, web-based data and other material will be made available online in MyUni for this course.
  • Learning & Teaching Activities
    Learning & Teaching Modes
    Up to two prerecorded lectures per week, plus weekly Flipped class and a tutorial. 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.  Some tutorials will be held in the Classics Departmental Museum.
    Workload

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

     

    WORKLOAD (Weekly)

    Total Hours

    12 weeks x 3 structured learning hours (average) 36
    4 reading hrs pw 48
    2 research hours pw (can include reading) 24
    4 hrs assignment preparation 48
    Learning Activities Summary
    Lecture topics will vary from year to year; a precise guide will be  available at the start of semester on MyUni. They will, however, broadly cover the following:
    1) Nabataea and the Spice Trade
    2) The Decapolis
    3) Syria
    4) Palmyra and Dura-Europus

    Specific Course Requirements
    You should watch, take notes from and revise the prerecorded lectures. Regular attendance at the flipped class and tutorials is required for this  course, as images which are used in both will be examined at the end of semester in the visual exam, and may also form part of the formal written examination material.
    Tutorial programme:
    Students should note that each must make an oral presentation (not assessed) of  his or her tutorial paper at the tutorial for that particular topic.   Submission of that tutorial paper must be made online via MyUni - see MyUni for more details.
     
    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. At least two classes will be held in the Museum of Classical
    Archaeology, using artefacts from our collection for Small Group Discovery within tutorials.
  • 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

    ca 500 word museum research Formative and Summative see MyUni 5% 1-4, 5
    ca 1000 word tutorial paper Formative and Summative see MyUni 10% 1-4, 5
    ca 2250 word research essay Formative and Summative see MyUni 35% 1-4
    Visual test (one hour) Summative Last lecture in semester 10% 1-4
    2 hour written exam Summative During university exam period 40% 1-4, 6
    Assessment Related Requirements
    Regular attendance is required for all weekly classes (flipped and tutorial). You must watch the weekly prerecorded lectures regularly. You will only gain access to the material in the next week's module if you have watched the prerecorded lecture(s) for that week.
    Ensure that you not only watch the prerecorded material, but take notes, and revise them. This material is the core of the written examination and - along with anything shown in tutorials and the flipped class - in the visual test.
    Assessment Detail
    Museum artefact research (ca 500 words): students work in Museum to write up a catalogue entry that is
    submitted online =5% weighting
    2250 word essay: students will be required to write an essay on a topic provided at the start of semester on MyUni (reading list provided). Due date later in semester in MyUni  = 35% weighting
    Tutorial paper ca 100 words: one tutorial paper ca 1000 words from questions provided in the tutorial programme (on MyUni with reading list provided). Submitted on the Monday of the week when the topic is discussed in class =10% weighting
    Visual test: a test of 30 images taken from both the lecture and tutorial programme, to be held at the
    end of semester and administered by the Dept - 10% weighting
    Exam:  a  2-hour exam with essay-type answers, to be held at the end of semester - 35% weighting.
    Submission

    No information currently available.

    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.

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    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.

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  • Policies & Guidelines
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