The Roman Empire in the First Century

The Roman Empire in the First Century

DVD - 2002
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This program chronicles the emergence of the powerful Roman Enpire from a chaotic period of violent coups, assassination, overarching ambition, civil war and clashes between the classes as well as the sexes.
Audience: E
Publisher: [Alexandria, Va.?] : PBS DVD Video, c2002
ISBN: 9780780638747
0780638743
Branch Call Number: DVD 937.07 ROM
Characteristics: 1 videodisc (ca. 219 min.) : sd., col. ; 4 3/4 in

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EuSei Oct 17, 2013

(First published on 9/23/13; censored by Bibliocommons) An interesting and very broad review of the Roman Empire during the first century AD that should be taken with a grain of salt. Some subjects are too quickly glossed over, names of important people related to emperors and dates are not even mentioned; I wish they had spoken a bit more about Germanicus, for example. (And besides, Sigourney’s voice distracted me: I kept thinking of Ripley!) One of the lowlights of this program iho was Professor Mellor (CULA) who fashionably sports the opinion that Rome was a big, happy slum—although he also admits there is nothing of the city left, but public buildings! So, was that metropolis, the epicenter of the Roman Empire, less than the cities of Herculaneum and Pompeii, which remains tell a very different story? Both cities, while they can’t be compared to our modern ones, had well-paved streets. Many houses had fresh water; and the ones that didn’t, were located near a fountain; both cities had several water towers and many baths, and we still find remains of Roman baths all over the world; why would the city of Rome be an exception? It makes no sense that people so much into bodily cleanliness would feel comfortable living in squalor. While I don’t idealize the city of Rome I cannot believe it a gigantic slum as it is frequently portrayed. I was also disappointed with (Harvard’s) Professor King’s statements about Jesus (a tiny episode glossed over very lightly and with a negative connotation). According to King Christians twisted the facts about Jesus; with a little smirk she explained: “they made this criminal—who the Romans had justly and rightly put to death—their hero and their God, whom they worshiped. The Romans got that. The Romans understood political subversion when they heard it.” Huh? But what can one expect: it’s a PBS “documentary” after all…

s
sandrin
Nov 19, 2010

It gives a fair but short review of the Roman empire with focus on some of the most emblematic emperors that the empire had in the first century. They've done a good job considering that it's hard to cover the roman history in 4 episodes...

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