This book evaluates a hundred years of scholarship on how empire transformed the Roman world, and advances a new theory of how the empire worked and was experienced. It engages extensively with Rome's Republican empire as well as the 'Empire of the Caesars', examines a broad range of ancient evidence (material, documentary, and literary) that illuminates multiple perspectives, and emphasizes the much longer history of imperial rule within which the Roman Empire emerged. Steering a course between overemphasis on resistance and overemphasis on consensus, it highlights the political, social, religious and cultural consequences of an imperial system within which functions of state were substantially delegated to, or more often simply assumed by, local agencies and institutions. The book is accessible and of value to a wide range of undergraduate and graduate students as well as of interest to all scholars concerned with the rise and fall of the Roman Empire.
About the Author
Emma Dench is McLean Professor of Ancient and Modern History and of the Classics at Harvard University. Her publications include Romulus' Asylum: Roman Identities from the Age of Alexander to the age of Hadrian (2005) and From Barbarians to New Men: Greek, Roman, and Modern Perceptions of Peoples of the Central Apennines (1995), as well as numerous articles and chapters on ethnicity, race, empire, and historiography in the ancient world.
Table of ContentsIntroduction; 1. Towards a Roman dialect of empire; 2. Territory; 3. Wealth and society; 4. Force and violence; 5. Time; Epilogue: becoming Roman?