Imperial Ideals in the Roman West

Imperial Ideals in the Roman West : Representation, Circulation, Power

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This book examines the figure of the Roman emperor as a unifying symbol for the western empire. It documents an extensive correspondence between the ideals cited in honorific inscriptions for the emperor erected across the Western Empire and those advertised on imperial coins minted at Rome. This reveals that the dissemination of specific imperial ideals was more pervasive than previously thought, and indicates a high degree of ideological unification amongst the aristocracies of the western provinces. The widespread circulation of a particular set of imperial ideals, and the particular form of ideological unification that this brought about, not only reinforced the power of the Roman imperial state, but also increased the authority of local aristocrats, thereby facilitating a general convergence of social power that defined the high Roman empire.

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Product details

  • Hardback | 480 pages
  • 158 x 228 x 28mm | 898.11g
  • Cambridge, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 79 b/w illus. 3 maps 11 tables
  • 1107005086
  • 9781107005082
  • 1,066,235

Review quote

'Norena's work provides the readership with ample material for further discussion of the same topic in the East and in Late Antiquity.' Arctos

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Table of contents

1. Introduction; Part I. Representation: Introduction to Part I: representation; 2. Values and virtues: the ethical profile of the emperor; 3. The benefits of empire and monarchy; Part II. Circulation: Introduction to Part II: circulation; 4. The diffusion of imperial ideals in time and space; 5. Central communication and local response; Part III. Power: 6. Ideological unification and social power in the Roman west; Appendices 1-15.

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About Carlos F. Norena

Carlos F. Norena is Assistant Professor of History at the University of California, Berkeley. He is the coeditor, with Bjorn C. Ewald, of The Emperor and Rome: Space, Representation, and Ritual (Cambridge University Press, 2010).

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