Course Description

Course Name

Roman Social History: Slaves, Gladiators, Prostitutes

Session: VDNS3121

Hours & Credits

18 Credit Points

Prerequisites & Language Level

Taught In English

  • There is no language prerequisite for courses at this language level.


A study of ancient Roman social life, with particular emphasis on the marginalised (or so-called ?invisible?) lower classes, including slaves, gladiators, prostitutes and bandits.

The vast and enduring empire of Rome was built upon the backs of men and women whose names never made it into the history books. This paper studies the lives of the marginalised (or so-called 'invisible') lower classes in ancient Rome, including slaves, gladiators, prostitutes and bandits. In doing so, it reveals a society that was often brutal and violent and based upon values very different from our own.

Learning Outcomes
An in-depth knowledge of the ancient sources that relate to the lower classes in ancient Roman society

R. Knapp Invisible Romans (Harvard UP, 2011)
Course Reader: Greek and Roman Primary Sources

*Course content subject to change