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CLAS 320 A: Society and Status in Greece and Rome

Classics 320
Meeting Time: 
MTWThF 9:30am - 10:20am
SMI 211
Deborah Kamen

Syllabus Description:

Autumn 2019, MTWThF 9.30-10.20am, SMI 211

Prof. Deborah Kamen,



In this course, we will be examining the public and private lives of the ancient Greeks and Romans, with a special focus on status, class, and gender. The diversity of human experience in the ancient world will be explored through the following topics: Greek and Roman social organization (men, women, children, the elderly, slaves, and freed slaves); housing; dress; food and drink; sex and sexuality; health and sickness; death and beliefs in the afterlife; magic and religion; politics; theatre and music; art and architecture; travel; economics; law; warfare; athletics and spectator sports; etc. No prerequisites.



By the end of the course, students will demonstrate the ability to identify the practices and ideologies of Greek and Roman society; understand the range of evidence for studying Greek and Roman social and cultural history; and appreciate the diversity of human experience in the ancient world.



Exam 1: 30%

Exam 2: 30%

Exam 3: 40%

Exams 1 and 2 will consist of ID’s (=identification of terms) and mini-essays; exam 3 will consist of ID’s, mini-essays, and one essay question about diversity in the ancient world. Exam 1 will cover lecture material and assigned readings from the first third of the course; Exam 2 the second third; Exam 3 the final third (though one should feel free to incorporate material from the entire course for the diversity essay). Do not bring blue books or Scantron forms.


Course Texts:

Required course texts: Both of these books are available FOR FREE as ebooks through UW Libraries (you just need to log in with your UW NetID).

Aldrete: Aldrete, G.S. (2004) Daily Life in the Roman City: Rome, Pompeii, and OstiaLinks to an external site. Westport, CT.

Garland: Garland, R. (2014) Daily Life of the Ancient GreeksLinks to an external site. 2nd ed. Indianapolis. 


Catalog Description: 
Examines the societies of ancient Greece and Rome, with a special focus on status, class, and gender. The diversity of human experience is explored through the study of men, women, children, the elderly, slaves, housing, dress, food, sexuality, medicine, death, religion, theater, politics, law, economics, travel, warfare, art, and athletics. Offered: A.
GE Requirements: 
Diversity (DIV)
Individuals and Societies (I&S)
Visual, Literary, and Performing Arts (VLPA)
Last updated: 
August 2, 2019 - 9:12pm