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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of History, Classics and Archaeology : Ancient History

Undergraduate Course: The Emperor in the Late Roman World (ANHI10026)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of History, Classics and Archaeology CollegeCollege of Humanities and Social Science
Course typeStandard AvailabilityAvailable to all students
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 10 (Year 3 Undergraduate) Credits20
Home subject areaAncient History Other subject areaNone
Course website None Taught in Gaelic?No
Course descriptionRoman emperors possessed and were seen to possess extraordinary personal power. But with a massive empire which took months to cross, and distant and varied subordinates with their own ambitions and agendas, emperors' room for action was always constrained and their personal survival often under threat. In the later Roman Empire (284-565), the presentation of the emperor became ever more grandiose, distant, and semi-divine; a vast and burgeoning bureaucratic state arose, and imperial patronage flowed through new channels, most notably Christian bishops. This course will look both at the individuals associated with these great changes, from Diocletian and Constantine through to Justinian, via characters like the pagan reactionary Julian and the teenage puppet Honorius; we will examine the developing elites of the period; we will look at what difference Christianity made, and at how subjects, great and humble, perceived and were expected to perceive the emperor.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites It is RECOMMENDED that students have passed Ancient History 2a: Past and Present in the Ancient World (ANHI08014) OR Ancient History 2b: Themes and Theories in Ancient History (ANHI08013) OR Classical Literature 2: Greek and Roman Epic (CLTR08008) OR Latin 2A (LATI08011) OR Latin 2B (LATI08012)
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements It is recommended that students should have achieved a Pass mark in one of the above courses, or in a 20-credit History course, or equivalent experience at the Course Organiser's discretion.
Additional Costs None
Information for Visiting Students
Pre-requisitesVisiting students should usually have at least 3 courses in Classics related subject matter (at least 2 of which should be in Ancient History) at grade B or above (or be predicted to obtain this) for entry to this course. We will only consider University/College level courses.
Displayed in Visiting Students Prospectus?Yes
Course Delivery Information
Not being delivered
Summary of Intended Learning Outcomes
On completion of the course, students will have gained, and will be able to express in writing in their assessed essay and examination, as well as orally in class discussion
- An understanding of the place of the emperors in the Roman empire of the late third to sixth centuries.
- An understanding of the changing perceptions of emperors in the period and the sources, literary and material, though which they are perceived.
- An understanding of the government of the late Roman state, the role of elites, and the effects of Christianisation.
- An understanding of trends within modern historical writing on Late Antiquity.
- an ability to use critically a variety of different methodologies and approaches to the subject.
- bibliographical research skills, for essays on subjects not taught directly.

Transferable Skills:

- written skills and oral communication skills,
- analytical skills,
- ability to recognise and focus on important aspects of a wide-ranging subject and to select specific examples,
- ability to produce a concise summary.
Assessment Information
60% - Degree Exam (of 2 hours);
40% - Continuous Assessment (essay).
Special Arrangements
In order for a student from outwith Classics to be enrolled, contact must be made with a Course Secretary on 50 3580 in order for approval to be obtained.
Additional Information
Academic description Not entered
Syllabus Not entered
Transferable skills Not entered
Reading list Not entered
Study Abroad Not entered
Study Pattern Not entered
Course organiserDr Gavin Kelly
Tel: (0131 6)50 3581
Course secretaryMs Elaine Hutchison
Tel: (0131 6)50 3582
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