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Lecture 10

HIST 3131 Lecture 10.docx

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York University
HIST 3131
Ben Kelly

Lecture 10 November-19-12 2:33 PM Exam: Dec 17th 9 AM ACW 206 Part 1: 50% Passage Analysis, comes with a starter question Possibly from the tutorial readings Part 2: 50% regular essay question Main themes Justifying Roman Imperialism  Justifications of imperialism in literature o Romans always had an ambiguous relationship with the Greek world o Romans recognized the culture and philosophy of the Greeks o Some romans really interested in the justification of their imperialism (Cicero)  Religious Justification o Possibly the oldest form of justification, rituals of fetial priests, had the power to declare war on Rome's enemies o Recites a speech over and over again for 33 days, if no demands are met in this period of grace, war is declared, found in Livy o Has nothing to do with justice or anything philosophical o Designate a space in Roman territory as enemy territory, to throw the spear into it, signifying the start of the war o Mechanical ritual o Must have initial injuries to Rome in order to declare a "just war" o Proper declaration of war, formal fetial rites o Finds evidence of the just war as a political o Goes out in an aggressive war for no reason, must cook up some justification o Rhetoric present used for the justification of the war o Ethical ideas act as a restraint on the Roman people, says Eckstein o Gods often cited as justification of the war o Roman inscriptions contain general statements that the Roman empire was foreordained by the gods o The Aeneid - Virgil an example I 278-279 (Trans. West) o Strong prophecy as seen by the gods to take over the whole world o Tacitus's writings narrates the approach to the Britain territory by Rome Aggricola 33 o Divide and conquer type of relationship between the Roman empire and everyone else  Paternalism Justifications o Under Greek philosophical influence, some Romans referred to the supposed law of nature that the strong always rule the weak o Sometimes this was considered to be a sufficient justification in itself o Some thinkers believed that imperial powers were under an ethical obligation to rule their weaker subjects in a gentle and non-exploitative way o The delian league create a dialogue between the Athenians and their subjects as imperialistic justification o Thucydides V 105 (trans. Warner) o One should do what is wise, not what is just, Cicero de Republica III 24 (Trans. Keyes) o Dominion is not always right, but only justified when the strong rule over the weak for the benefit of the weaker Cicero de Republica III 38 o Laelius argues that imperialism can be justified Cicero de Rebpublica III 41 o Poseidonios, Greek philosopher is shared with Cicero and Laelius, of ruling over the weak in order the benefit them o Tacituc Aggricola appox 150 years after Cicero, showing strong approvals that look after the weaker, but not exploit them o Not profiting from the provincials, but not exploiting them, and not carrying any harsh bias, just ruling  Justification Through Art and Architechture  Triumphalism: o Some depictions of barbarians are straightforward celebra
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