Conquerors and Slaves

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Cambridge University Press, Jan 31, 1981 - History - 292 pages
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The enormous size of the Roman empire and the length of time it endured call for an understanding of the institutions which sustained it. In this book, Keith Hopkins, who is both classicist and sociologist, uses various sociological concepts and methods to gain new insights into how traditional Roman institutions changed as the Romans acquired their empire. He examines the chain reactions resulting from increased wealth; various aspects of slavery, especially manumission and the cost of freedom; the curious phenomenon of the political power wielded by eunuchs at court; and in the final chapter he discusses the Roman emperor's divinity and the circulation of untrue stories, which were a currency of the political system. Professor Hopkins has developed an exciting approach to social questions in antiquity and his book should be of interest to all students of ancient history and of historical sociology.
 

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User Review  - NickBrooke - LibraryThing

The dynamics of imperial expansion, with a special focus on slaves, eunuchs, and emperor-worship. Read full review

Contents

Map
1
The intrusion of slaves
8
A sketch of the economy
15
Continuous war
27
The products of war
37
The formation of large estates
48
Land in politics
56
The solution mass migration
64
On the probable size of the population
96
ON FREEING SLAVES
133
THE POLITICAL POWER OF EUNUCHS
172
DIVINE EMPERORS OR THE SYMBOLIC UNITY
197
Bibliography
243
Supplementary bibliography
252
Index of proper names
261
Copyright

Structural differentiation and the wider implications
74

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References to this book

Historical Sociology
Philip Abrams
Limited preview - 1982
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About the author (1981)

Keith Hopkins is a professor of ancient history at King's College, Cambridge, & a fellow of the British Academy. He lives in Cambridge, England.

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