The Roman World 44 BC-AD 180: Second Edition (The Routledge History of the Ancient World) Paperback – 10 Nov 2011
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About the Author
Martin Goodman is Professor of Jewish Studies at Oxford. He is a Fellow of Wolfson College, Oxford, and a Fellow of the British Academy. He has written numerous books, including The Ruling Class of Judaea (1987) and Rome and Jerusalem: the clash of ancient civilizations (2007).
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Top customer reviews
So, this book specifically covers the Roman World in the period from 44 BC to AD 180 - from the assassination of Julius Caesar to the death of Marcus Aurelius. The book is divided into five main sections:
Part I: Introduction
Sources and Problems
The Roman world in 50BC
Part II: Elite politics
The political language of Rome
Caesar to Augustus 50 Bc - AD 14
Julio-Claudians AD 14-68
Civil War and Flavians AD 68-96
Nerva to Marcus Aurelius AD 96-180
Part II: The State
The operation of the State in Rome
The operation of the State in the provinces
The army in society
The image of the Emperor
The extent of political unity
The extent of economic unity
The extent of cultural unity
Part IV: Society
Reactions to imperial rule
The city of Rome: Social organisation
The city of Rome: culture and life
Italy and Sicily
The Iberian Peninsula and the islands of the Western Mediterranean
France and Britain
The Rhineland and the Balkans
Greece and the Aegean Coast
Central and Eastern Turkey
The Northern Levant and Mesopotamia
The Southern Levant
Part V: Humans and gods
In under 400 pages (including notes, biobiographical notes and index), a tall order to cover all these aspects in great detail. However, the organisation of the book allows for the reader to study in a concise manner the particular area they are researching, or the topic of interest, and to move through the book in both a chronological and thematic manner. The bibliographical notes offer further suggestions for reading in the various sections, which is helpful, although this could definitely do with expansion, and updating.
The sections on the provinces are particularly helpful, giving a good overview of their status under the Roman World during the period, as well as geographical maps and maps which show the Roman provinces and their boundaries (as such). I found this particularly good for an understanding of the Roman world as a whole, and the areas of which it was made up during this period.
The author has written several books, particularly on aspects of Roman empire, and is an authoritative source of information. This book does exactly what it sets out to do, and in great and concise formatting and detail - it is a book I'm glad I purchased, and I refer to it often; this is the first time I've read it from cover to cover, and it won't be the last time I do so, I'm sure. Highly recommended.
I've read a number of books on the Roman Empire but this one is probably the best. In 329 pages (the rest of the book is devoted to notes, bibliography and the index) Goodwin brings to life the Roman World in all its splendour, gaudiness, depravity and even, in parts, its squalor.
Part one is an introduction to sources and the Roman worldat the start of the peridod (in 50BC). Part two deals with the Emperors and politics. Part three with various aspects of the functioning of the state. Part four is split between society in various parts of the empire (Rome, Italy, France, Britain, Germany, Greece, the East, Egypt, Africa etc) Finally Part five is on the Pagan Godsa nd then Judaism and Christianity.
All in all quite acomprehensive book for such a short book and one that will whet your apptetite to delve further in many of these areas.
A book I wholeheartedly recommend!
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