Rome and Romanization
This assignment gives you the opportunity to practice determining the purpose and function of artifacts in order to create your interpretation of a specific historical development—Romanization.
Discuss the impact of the process of Romanization on the Roman world. Identify at least two examples of cultural structures that were patterned across Roman-conquered cities. Cultural structures can include physical features of Roman-ruled cities, practices, policies, ideas, or any artifact that was used to shape the conquered religions.
Discuss how these structures impacted daily life, which may include politics, economics, or social roles. Describe how and with what intent these events were “memorialized” or used in the cultural arena.
Step 1: Choose two appropriate sources. Resources from outside should be credible and peer-reviewed and cannot include Wikipedia, Biography.com, History.com, any type of message board, or other similar encyclopedias.
Step 2: Complete your research. Choose one interesting development that illustrates the main point that you want to make about your chosen physical structures, practices, or ideas. Gather details about your choice. For example, what types of buildings were first introduced in Rome, and why were they purposely replicated in other, smaller cities?
Step 3: Draw conclusions from the details you found, and prepare your thesis. A thesis is prepared after you have completed your research and gathered enough information about the chosen structures. You should sit back to think about what it means to see the influence on culture. Your thesis statement should offer your reader the overall insight into the use and impact of the structure on Roman development.
Use the following guidelines to help decide on your thesis.
Ask yourself about how the cultural element (idea, practice, or structure) was shaped by its time period and environment.
Ask yourself how the structure impacted the lives of the people around it, the general public, and the immediately following period in the history of Rome.
Find the perfect specific example to demonstrate the qualities of the structure you would most like to show.
Step 4: Write your essay. Your essay must be at least 500 words in length. All sources must be referenced and cited according to APA guidelines.
1) First, what not to use.
a. Avoid all “.com” sources including what are clearly popular sources or blogs from other countries that may not have “.com” at the end. If your source is just a list of facts without noting the issues that are still debated or mentioning that there are different interpretations, it’s a weak source and its oversimplifications are going to make your work over-simplified. At the college level, the point of research is to go beyond the simple stories we all already know.
b. Avoid all encyclopedia (except the two below) and wikis. Avoid the Salem Press Encyclopedia.
c. Avoid sources that are clearly politicized like libertarian or socialist journals. Sometimes they have rigorous work but both of these commit the cardinal error for historians – they impose a pre-judged story onto historical periods. Then you will do the same and your essay will be flawed. As citizens we can do what we want with the data and you might enjoy either or both of these slanted sources, but as historians, we have to build our conclusions from the evidence up instead of coming in with a story we prefer and then picking out data that fits it. We keep our focus on unearthing the complexities in the specific period instead of writing “stepping stone” history which is really about us.
d. Lastly, make sure you’re not using Scholastic or Calliope or other magazines for kids, or a textbook or some other source focused on how to teach.
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