Roman Architecture

About the Course

This course is an introduction to the great buildings and engineering marvels of Rome and its empire, with an emphasis on urban planning and individual monuments and their decoration, including mural painting. While architectural developments in Rome, Pompeii, and Central Italy are highlighted, the course also provides a survey of sites and structures in what are now North Italy, Sicily, France, Spain, Germany, Greece, Turkey, Croatia, Jordan, Lebanon, Libya, and North Africa. The lectures are illustrated with over 1,500 images, many from Professor Kleiner's personal collection.

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Course Structure

This Yale College course, taught on campus twice per week for 75 minutes, was recorded for Open Yale Courses in Spring 2009.

Course Materials

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Video and audio elements from this course are also available on:

About Professor Diana E. E. Kleiner

Diana E. E. Kleiner is the Dunham Professor of History of Art and Classics at Yale University, Founding Project Director and Principal Investigator of Open Yale Courses, and former Deputy Provost at Yale. She is the author of numerous books on Roman art in its political and social context including Roman Sculpture (Yale University Press), the fundamental reference on the subject. She has done seminal work on Roman women, centered around the ground-breaking exhibition, I Clavdia: Women in Ancient Rome, and is the author of Cleopatra and Rome (Harvard University Press), which opens a new perspective on one of the most intriguing women who ever lived. Professor Kleiner has resided in Rome and Athens and has traveled extensively throughout what was once the Roman Empire, experiencing firsthand nearly every site and building featured in Roman Architecture.

Update: Professor Kleiner recently released an e-Book that is a companion to this online course. Roman Architecture: A Visual Guide (Yale University Press, 2014) is an interactive e-book featuring chapter overviews for the major time periods, sites, and monuments and concise interpretations of the most important buildings in the Roman Empire, illustrated in over 250 photographs and site plans. They provide the “Monument Lists” mentioned in the lectures and are presented primarily through my her digital images. Above all, these custom created resources make learning easier than ever with maps, pop up references, visual book navigation, geolocation links, flashcards, and recommendations for further reading.

Roman Architecture: A Visual Guide is available from Apple iBooks. Click here to purchase the iBooks version. The iBooks version is only available in the US, UK, Canada, Europe and Australia.

The e-book is also available for Amazon Kindle. Click here to purchase for Amazon Kindle.  

If you do not own an iPad or Kindle device, you can enjoy the eBook using a personal computer through the Amazon Kindle app or through the iBooks app for Mac (the latest iOS release is required). You can download the Kindle reading app:

http://www.amazon.com/gp/feature.html/ref=dp_kinw_strp_1?ie=UTF8&docId=1000493771

Please check the stores now that the eBook has been made available for all areas.

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Syllabus

Professor

Diana E. E. Kleiner, Dunham Professor of History of Art and Classics

Description

This course is an introduction to the great buildings and engineering marvels of Rome and its empire, with an emphasis on urban planning and individual monuments and their decoration, including mural painting. While architectural developments in Rome, Pompeii, and Central Italy are highlighted, the course also provides a survey of sites and structures in what are now North Italy, Sicily, France, Spain, Germany, Greece, Turkey, Croatia, Jordan, Lebanon, Libya, and North Africa. The lectures are illustrated with over 1,500 images, many from Professor Kleiner's personal collection.

Texts

Ward-Perkins, John B. Roman Imperial Architecture. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1994.

Claridge, Amanda. Rome: An Oxford Archaeological Guide, second edition, Oxford and New York: Oxford University Press, 2010.

Requirements

The course requires two midterms and a term paper. The paper is approximately 8 pages of text, plus footnotes or endnotes, bibliography, and illustrations. Students should choose their topic from three options: traditional research paper, select a building/select a theme, and design a Roman city.

Grading

Midterm examination 1: 30%
Midterm examination 2: 30%
Final paper: 30%
Participation in online forum: 10%

Sessions

Lecture 1 Introduction to Roman Architecture
Lecture 2 It Takes a City: The Founding of Rome and the Beginnings of Urbanism in Italy
Lecture 3 Technology and Revolution in Roman Architecture
Lecture 4 Civic Life Interrupted: Nightmare and Destiny on August 24, A.D. 79
Lecture 5 Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous: Houses and Villas at Pompeii
Lecture 6 Habitats at Herculaneum and Early Roman Interior Decoration
Lecture 7 Gilding the Lily: Painting Palaces and Villas in the First Century A.D.
Lecture 8 Exploring Special Subjects on Pompeian Walls
Lecture 9 From Brick to Marble: Augustus Assembles Rome
Lecture 10 Accessing Afterlife: Tombs of Roman Aristocrats, Freedmen, and Slaves
Lecture 11 Notorious Nero and His Amazing Architectural Legacy
Lecture 12 The Creation of an Icon: The Colosseum and Contemporary Architecture in Rome
Lecture 13 The Prince and the Palace: Human Made Divine on the Palatine Hill
Paper Topics Discovering the Roman Provinces and Designing a Roman City
Lecture 14 The Mother of All Forums: Civic Architecture in Rome under Trajan
Lecture 15 Rome and a Villa: Hadrian's Pantheon and Tivoli Retreat
Lecture 16 The Roman Way of Life and Death at Ostia, the Port of Rome
Lecture 17 Bigger Is Better: The Baths of Caracalla and Other Second- and Third-Century Buildings in Rome
Lecture 18 Hometown Boy: Honoring an Emperor's Roots in Roman North Africa
Lecture 19 Baroque Extravaganzas: Rock Tombs, Fountains, and Sanctuaries in Jordan, Lebanon, and Libya
Lecture 20 Roman Wine in Greek Bottles: The Rebirth of Athens
Lecture 21 Making Mini Romes on the Western Frontier
Lecture 22 Rome Redux: The Tetrarchic Renaissance
Lecture 23 Rome of Constantine and a New Rome

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Through a pilot arrangement with Open Yale Courses, OpenStudy offers tools to participate in online study groups for a selection of Open Yale Courses, including HSAR 252. If you wish to participate in one of these study groups, you will need to register for a free account with OpenStudy.

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Course Books and Other Related Titles

Yale University Press offers a 10% discount on the books used in HSAR 252 that it publishes, as well as on other related titles. A portion of the proceeds from your purchases will be donated for the ongoing support and development of the Open Yale Courses program.

View the catalog for this course