To send content items to your account,
please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies.
If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account.
Find out more about sending content to .
To send content items to your Kindle, first ensure email@example.com
is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings
on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part
of your Kindle email address below.
Find out more about sending to your Kindle.
Note you can select to send to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations.
‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be sent to your device when it is connected to wi-fi.
‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.
In this, the first comprehensive one-volume survey of the economies of classical antiquity, twenty-eight chapters summarise the current state of scholarship in their specialised fields and sketch new directions for research. The approach taken is both thematic, with chapters on the underlying determinants of economic performance, and chronological, with coverage of the whole of the Greek and Roman worlds extending from the Aegean Bronze Age to Late Antiquity. The contributors move beyond the substantivist-formalist debates that dominated twentieth-century scholarship and display a new interest in economic growth in antiquity. New methods for measuring economic development are explored, often combining textual and archaeological data that have previously been treated separately. Fully accessible to non-specialist, the volume represents a major advance in our understanding of the economic expansion that made the civilisation of the classical Mediterranean world possible.
From Jean Bodin to Lewis Morgan to contemporary scholars, Rome has provided the paradigm of patriarchy in western thought. The paterfamilias, with his unlimited legal powers over members of his familia, has been interpreted as the extreme case in which “ paternal authority passed beyond the bounds of reason into an excess of domination.” Family relationships are often conceptualized as falling somewhere along a spectrum from afrectionless power at one end to loving concern at the other, and the movement along the spectrum is then historicized as social development. The Roman father, who in legend would execute his disobedient son without flinching, is taken to represent afrectionless power – the starting point from which the affectionate family gradually evolved.
My study has suggested the inadequacy of such a simple evolutionary view of family history. The Roman family was unquestionably patriarchal, in the sense that it was defined with reference to the father, who was endowed with a special authority in the household. But, I have argued, the characterization of an “excess of domination” has been the result of both a misinterpretation of the legends and, above all, an overly legalistic approach to the family. The law endowed the pater with a striking potestas encompassing extensive coercive and proprietary rights, yet a purely legal understanding of the Roman family is as incomplete and misleading as would be a solely legal understanding of the twentieth-century family. In certain circumstances, to be sure, legal rights and powers were important in determining the nature of family interactions, but in many other contexts the Romans appear to have been as oblivious to formal legal definitions of power in the family as we are today.