College of Arts and Sciences

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College of Arts and Sciences ...

    College of Arts and Sciences

    Chairperson's Application for Approval of a New Course

DATE: Nov. 1, 2006

    TO: CAS Academic Dean

    FROM: Barbara Rosenwein, Chair

    DEPARTMENT: History


    ; Course Number: HIST 3081

    ; Credit Hours: 3

    ; Course Title: Pompeii and Herculaneum

    ; Title Abbreviation: Pompeii & Herculaneum

    (Titles longer than 25 character positions must be abbreviated to not more than 25 character positions,

    exclusive of cross listing notations, for computer printouts. Count spaces and punctuation marks into total.

    Please limit punctuation to colons, ampersands (&), and dashes, if possible.) 2. CROSS-LISTINGS:

    (NOTE: All cross-listings must be approved by the chairperson(s) of the cross-listed department(s).)

    ; Course Number: ANTH XXX; CLST XXX

    ; Credit Hours: 3

    ; Maximum number of hours that a student may earn in this course 3

    ; Maximum number of times that a student may take this course for new credit 1

    ; Course Title: Pompeii and Herculaneum

    ; Title Abbreviation: Pompeii & Herculaneum

     Signature(s) of Concurring Chairperson (on original forms): Date


    ; What, if any, will be the prerequisites for this course? None

    ; Will it be a prerequisite for any other course? No

    ; Will it be required for the major? No

    ; Should any course presently offered be dropped? No

    ; List all courses in all departments with similar or overlapping content:

    ; Date or term in which this new course becomes effective: Spring, 2007

    ; Which full-time faculty members will be prepared to teach or supervise this course? Leslie Dossey

    ; Are available material resources (e.g., library, laboratory) adequate for the course? Yes

    ; Are adequate resources available in the library? (Yes or No) Yes

    ; If no, approximate cost of obtaining sufficient resources:

     (on original form): Date Signature of Bibliographer

    ; Explain briefly the writing component of this course. Several short papers on the readings, and a research

    paper on a topic of the student’s choice

    ; Has this course been offered as a special topics course? Yes

    ; If yes, how many times? Twice

    ; When? Spring 2004 and Fall 2005

    ; What enrollment? 17 and 35

    4. REASONS FOR ADDING THIS, COURSE: It is a popular course that strengthens our medieval offerings and the Medieval Studies interdisciplinary minor.

5. CATALOG DESCRIPTION OF NEW COURSE: (Include a one sentence description of the course, and a

    one or two sentence description of the course outcome. The total should be about 50 words.)

    The two best known Roman towns - Pompeii and Herculaneum - whose remains were preserved by the eruption of Mt. Vesuvius in 79 CE - will serve as a microcosm for understanding Roman society.

    Outcome: Students will gain an understanding of how recent archaeological discoveries have changed our view of Pompeii and Herculaneum and learn to "read" such things as dining and bathing rituals, gladiator games, and public and private architecture to gain insight into the structures of Roman social and cultural life. 6. PLEASE INCLUDE A SYLLABUS (and bibliography, if available).

7. SIGNATURES: (on original form)

    ; Chairperson Date

    ; Academic Council Representative Date

    ; Academic Dean Date

    ; Registrar's Approval of Course Number Date

     After approval has been given, and the course added to the Title Database, this form will be returned to the Academic Dean who will forward it to the chairperson of the initiating department.

    HIST. 300 603 / CLST 381 603 Pompeii & Herculaneum: An Introduction to Roman Social and Cultural History

    M 7:00-9:30 pm

    Damen Hall 734

Prof. Leslie Dossey 73

    Office: Crown Center 539, History Department

    Office hours: M 2 - 4 PM; Tues 2 - 4 PM (and by appointment)


    This is a course on Roman daily life, how historians can "read" such things as dining and bathing rituals, gladiator games, and public and private architecture to gain insight into the structures of social and cultural life. The two best known Roman towns - Pompeii and Herculaneum - whose remains were preserved by the eruption of Mt. Vesuvius in 79 CE - will serve as a microcosm for understanding Roman society. The course will be divided into two halves: the first half will examine the activities Romans did in public spaces - the amphitheater, forum, temples, markets, baths, and brothels. The second will look at the activities of the home - dining, private religion, sleeping, the reception of clients, and work. Some of our overall questions will include: how conquering an empire changed the Romans at the level of their everyday lives; how gender and social status (including slavery) affected the use of space; how villas set the standard of the "good" life and served as intellectual centers. The readings will consist of several recent monographs on Pompeii and Herculaneum; the letters of Pliny the Younger who was present during Vesuvius' eruption; a Roman novel; and a sourcebook of graffiti from the town walls, recent excavation reports, and articles on daily life and material culture. Each class there will be a combination of lectures and class discussion of the readings. Students will also develop their own topics for a research paper and present their findings to the class.

Texts for purchase at Loyola University Bookstore:

Wallace-Hadrill, A. Houses and Society in Pompeii and Herculaneum. Princeton University Press: 1994 (1996

    reprint paperback).

    Zanker, P. Pompeii: Public and Private Life. Harvard University Press: 1998.

    Radice, B. (Translator). Letters of the Younger Pliny. Penguin Classics: 1990.

Walsh, P. G. (Translator). The Satyricon. Oxford World’s Classics. Oxford University Press: 1999.

*Sourcebook of articles and primary texts (to be purchased at SOS Copies, 6548 N. Sheridan Rd. next to



Two short papers on readings (2-3 pages each) 15%

    Participation 15%

    Midterm exam 20%

    Final exam 20%

    10 page research paper (includes paper proposal and prepaper) 30%

    1. Two short papers on readings: These papers will describe and analyze a specific Roman activity (for example, banquets, public executions in the arena, classroom instruction), drawing on the readings for the week. You will have a choice about when to turn in these papers, and will be expected to help lead discussions on those days. I will pass around a sign-up sheet on the third week of class, along with a more complete description of these assignments.

    2. Participation: Your participation grade will be based on attendance, oral presentations on your research project, and a general demonstration that you are keeping up with the readings. **Please note that missing more than one

    class will lower your participation grade by one grade (i.e. A will become B) unless you have a documented medical or family emergency. Being more than 20 minutes late counts as missing class.

    3. Midterm and Final Exams (take-home). These will consist of short essay questions and analysis of texts or images that you have already seen. They will be open book and open note. The final will follow the same format as the midterm, with a focus on the second half of the semester.

    4. Research paper: Your research paper will employ a combination of primary and secondary sources to explore some aspect of Roman daily life (see suggestions for topics at the end of this syllabus).

    Policy on late papers and missed exams: Unless you get an extension from me ahead of time, late papers will lose a third of a grade for every day late (a B+ will become a B). If you miss an exam, you may take a make-up during my office hours, but will be penalized a full letter grade (A becomes B). The penalty does not apply in cases of documented medical or family emergency.

    Plagiarism: If you plagiarize in a paper, you will get no credit for that assignment - i.e. it will be factored in as a 0. You will also be reported to the Dean. Plagiarism is using other people's words and ideas as though they were

    your own, without citing your source. Even when you are paraphrasing (not quoting), it counts as plagiarism if you do not cite your source.



1. Aug. 28 Course requirements and historical overview

    Eruption of Vesuvius: Pliny, Letters 1.1, 6.16, 6.20

2. Sept. 5 (No Class due to Labor Day Holiday)

    Read Zanker, 1-25 “Townscape and Domestic Taste”

    Reading questions: What are the similarities and differences between Greek and Roman public architecture? Between Greek and Roman domestic architecture?

    According to Zanker, Romans used architecture, both public and private, as communication. What was being communicated?

    Who set the fashions in Roman culture and lifestyle?

    Was there any relationship between Roman politics and the hedonistic lifestyle adopted by the upper classes?

3. Sept. 12 Transformation of Pompeii from a Hellenistic to Roman city

    Zanker, 27-77 “Urban Space as a Reflection of Society and Zanker, pp 78-133, Impact of Augustus

Due: One paragraph proposal on topic of interest for research paper


4. Sept. 19 Roman neighborhoods and the impact of slavery

    Wallace-Hadrill, pp 65 - 117: ch. 4 "Houses and Urban Texture;” ch. 5 "Houses and Households

    Pliny Letters 1.4, 3.14, 3.19, 4.10, 5.19, 6.3, 6.25, 7.16, 7.32, 8.1, 8.16, 10.29-30, 10.65-66 and 10.72-73 Petronius, The Satyricon, pp 20- 31

5. Sept. 26 Politics and the arena

    City Politics: How was Pompeii governed?

    graffiti from Pompeii’s basilica (Sourcebook)

    election notices from Pompeii (Sourcebook)

    Hermeneumata on going to the forum (Sourcebook)

    Image of aedile distributing bread (Sourcebook)

    Petronius, The Satyricon, pp 31 36

    Pliny, Letters 1.8, 1.19, 4.1, 5.7, 7.1


Gladiators and the amphitheater

    (Zanker, 61 - 72 - review)

    T. Wiedemann, Emperors and Gladiators (Routledge: 1992), 1-13, 28-29, 37-38, 73-78, 85-97 (Sourcebook)

    Pliny, Letters 1.8, 4.22, 6.34, 7.24, 9.6, 9.23, 10.31-32, 10.39-40, 10.96-97

    Gladiator graffiti from Pompeii (Sourcebook)

    Seneca’s Letters on Gladiators (Sourcebook)

    Petronius, The Satyricon, pp 35-36 and p 7

Revised proposal with bibliography of main primary source(s) and at least three secondary sources for

    research papers

6. Oct. 3 Temples, schools, and the public baths

Roman public religion

    Zanker (review pp 31-133 - which temples were most important?)

    Richardson, 281-85 (Templum Isidis) (Sourcebook)

    Inscriptions from Temple of Isis (Sourcebook)

    Pliny’s Letters 3.4, *3.6, 4.1, 4.8, *8.8, *9.39, *10.8-9, 10.13, 10.35-36, 10.49-50, 10.52, 2.20

    Petronius, The Satyricon, pp 12-19


    B. Dexter Hoyos, “Inscriptions, graffiti and literacy at Pompeii,” in Pompeii Revisited (Sourcebook)

    Hermeneumata on daily life of a schoolboy (Sourcebook))

    Pliny 1.8, 2.18, 3.3, 4.13

    Petronius 36- 49


    G. Fagan, Bathing in Public in the Roman world (Michigan: 1999), 1-29 (Sourcebook)

    Richardson 100-05 (Thermae Stabianae), 147-53 (Terme del Foro) (Sourcebook)

    Pliny, Letters 3.14, 7.1, 9.36, 10.23-24, 10.39-40, 10.70-71

    Seneca and Lucian on public baths (Sourcebook)

    Hermeneumata on going to the baths (Sourcebook)

    Petronius, 20-21, 31-32

Oct. 10 (No class due to Fall Break)

8. Oct. 17 Brothels and other commerce

Wallace-Hadrill, ch. 6 "Houses and Trade";

    Pompei Insula 9, Regio I (British excavations) (web):

    Images of shops and salesmen (Sourcebook)

    McGinn, “Pompeian brothels and social history” (Sourcebook);

    Zarmati, “Women and Eros,” in Pompeii Revisited 106-111 (Sourcebook)

    Petronius, pp 5-6



    9. Oct. 24 Domestic architecture and the Roman family

Wallace-Hadrill, ch. 1 "Reading the Roman House”, ch. 2 "The Language of Public and Private," and ch. 3 "The

    Articulation of the House”

The Roman family:

    Pliny, Letters 1.14, 1.16, 4.2, 4.15, 5.1, 5.16, 6.4, 6.7, 6.10, 6.24, 7.5, 7.24, 8.5, 8.10, 8.11, 8.18, 8.23, 9.12, 10.2

Progress reports on research projects

10. Oct. 31 Villas and the good life

    The Villas:

    Zanker, 135 -203, “The Domestic Arts in Pompeii”;

    Pliny, Letters 2.17, 5.6, 9.30, 9.36, 9.40

    Wallace-Hadrill, 143-174, Ch. 7 “Luxury and status”

    Lifestyle and philosophy: The Villa of the Papyri and Philodemus:

    M. Gigante, Philodemus in Italy: The books from Herculaneum (Michigan: 1991), 53-61 (Sourcebook)

Prepapers for research project due

10. Nov. 7 Roman dining and sleeping


    E. Robinson, "Roman Cuisine,” in Pompeii Revisited, 114-129 (Sourcebook)

    Petronius, pp 49 - 66

    Pliny, Letters 1.15, 2.6, 3.12, 7.21, 9.17, 9.23, 9.36

    Hermeneumata on lunch and dinner (Sourcebook)

    S. and J. Bisel, "Health and Nutrition at Herculaneum. An examination of human skeletal remains," in The

    Natural History of Pompeii, 451-460 and 473-474 (Sourcebook)


    Pliny, Letters 1.3, 2.17, 9.36, 9.40

    Casa a Graticcio, Herculaneum: R. De Kind, Houses in Herculaneum (Gieben: 1998), 114-122 (Sourcebook)

    Mols, Wooden Furniture of Herculaneum (Sourcebook)

    Hermeneumata on getting up and going to bed (Sourcebook)

    11. Nov. 14 Private religion and the service quarters Private religion

    P. Connor, "Lararium-Household Religion,” in Pompeii Revisited, 90-99 (Sourcebook)

    Pedar Foss, “Watchful Lares: Roman household organization and the rituals of cooking and dining,” in

    Domestic Space in the Roman World (Sourcebook)

Progress reports on research projects

12. Nov. 21 Water, health, and hygiene

Aqueducts and sewers:

    Richardson, “The water and sewer system,” 51-63 (Sourcebook)

    Strabo, Geography 5.3.8 on Romans and sewers (Sourcebook)

    Pliny, Letters 4.30, 5.14, 10.37-38, 10.39-40, 10.41-42, 10.61-62, 10.90 - 91, 10.98-99


    Frank Sear, “Water supply to the House of the Painted capitals,” in Pompeii Revisited, 100-102

    Petronius, 20-21, 37

    Pliny, Letters 1.12, 1.22, 2.20, 4.21, 5.6, 7.21, 8.1, 10.98-99 (health)


13. Nov. 28 Student presentations

14. Dec. 5 Student presentations

Final papers due


    1. You could examine how some of the new excavations at Pompeii or Herculaneum have changed our understanding of the sites or the lives of the people who inhabited them. Develop a bibliography by searching web for Reading University's excavation of the House of Amarantus, Bradford University’s excavation of the House of

    the Vestals. Bradford's excavations at the House of the Surgeon.

    2. Impact of imperialism on Romans: Examine the portrayals (and presence) of foreign plants and animals in the houses of Pompeii and Herculaneum. What was the meaning behind the frequent portrayal of Egyptian motifs (crocodiles, Egyptian dress) on Pompeian wall paintings and other art? Pliny the Elder as well as the articles in The Natural History of Pompeii, would be particularly useful for this.

    3. Lead poisoning and the Romans. Was lead poisoning from their water supply really a problem for the Romans? You could research skeletal analysis of dead Pompeians, presence of lead pipes, other sources of lead, and the impact of lead on human health. Bisel’s article is place to start.

    4. Roman fertility. Many Romans (including the emperor Augustus) thought they had a fertility problem by the late first century BCE. Was this the case, and if so, what were the causes? You could research age groups in Pompeian skeletons, ancient methods of birth control, attitudes towards children in Pliny the Younger, etc.

    5. Roman militarism: Between the first and second centuries CE, recruitment into the Roman army shifted away from Italy to the provinces. Were Romans becoming less militaristic? You could examine presence of weapons in the houses (cupboards; archaeological sites), and on the bodies (what weapons (if any) did people have on them?). How popular were representations of warfare?

    6. Philosophy and lifestyle: Both the Epicurean philosophers (like Philodemus) and the Romans have often been accused of overindulgence. Based on the actual remains of Roman meals (and/or representations of them / Pliny’s letters), what were Roman banquets actually like? How did Epicurean philosophy (esp. Philodemus)

    affect Roman attitudes towards food, bathing, housing, etc.

    7. Fuel - Romans managed to maintain a fairly high standard of living without using most modern forms of fossil fuel. How did they adapt their buildings / lifestyle to suit their environment? How was cooking and hygiene arranged at Pompeii and Herculaneum to maximize fuel efficiency?

    8. Clothing in antiquity was far more valuable relative to people’s incomes than clothing is today. How was it used to indicate social class? Gender distinctions? Did Pompeians make their clothing at home or buy it on the market? Sources: paintings / other representations of clothing (lamps, silver, pottery); small finds of loom weights, spindle whirls, in houses; fuller and weaving establishments.

    9. The Roman Empire was a world without cars. Instead Pompeians used sedans, horses, carts, carriages, donkeys, etc. How did Romans design neighborhoods differently than we do to adapt to their forms of transportation? How was social status reflected through transport? Were Roman women allowed to travel freely?

    10. One gets the impression from reading the letters of Pliny the Younger that the Romans were not particularly religious. Was this true for all Romans, or just for overeducated senators like Pliny? You could examine the evidence of religiosity in Pompeii and Herculaneum (presence of lararia in homes; religious themes in

    wall painting; inscriptions from temples; magical gemstones; “mystery” religions such as cults of Dionysus, Isis and Christianity (?) at Pompeii).

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