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Courses - Spring 2024
Classics Department Site
Open Seats as of
06/18/2024 at 08:30 PM
Ancient Slavery and its American Impacts
Credits: 3
Grad Meth: Reg, P-F, Aud
Cross-listed with: HIST339J.
Credit only granted for: CLAS340 or HIST339J.
Interrogates how slavery permeated the ancient Mediterranean societies of Greece and Rome. We will pay particular attention to how hierarchical inequalities are institutionalized, experienced, and represented and to how different marginalized and dominant groups interacted. Enslaved persons performed necessary labor in Greece and Rome and their work was essential for the formation of ancient society in agriculture, mining, domestic spaces, literature, finance, and government. Studying ancient slavery offers a chance to examine Greece and Rome from the bottom up, parsing the scant literary and material evidence for the lives and struggles of enslaved persons. We will practice several different approaches in order to tease out the systematic, economic, political, and personal effects of slavery in the ancient world. The United States of America was also founded as a slave society, and discussions of slavery in the Americas often look back to the ancient Mediterranean. The course will therefore conclude with a unit on how enslavers and abolitionists in the United States utilized and responded to slavery in antiquity.