CL190-000: Freshman Seminar


January 12, 2016 - April 25, 2016
DaysTimeLocationInstructorGERCreditOPUS #
1:00pm - 4:00pm
Carlos Hall Conference
Varner, Eric R.
Appropriate for First Year students.
Limited to freshmen. Topic changes to reflect changing interests of faculty and students.

Popular perceptions of Rome’s first twelve Caesars (who included Julius Caesar, Augustus, Caligula, Claudius, Nero, Vespasian, Titus and Domitian) are often fueled by the ancient biographer Suetonius’s lurid and scandalous accounts of the period. Suetonius’s Twelve Caesars is filled with accusations of outrageous sexual behavior, madness, and political posturing, that are often in direct opposition to the visual record as embodied in  official monuments of art and architecture commissioned by the Caesars themselves or their wives.  This course will combine an in depth examination of the artistic material, as well as surviving portraits in sculpture and on coins and gems,  together with a careful reading of Suetonius’s text, as well as new biographical material on the twelve Caesars.  Close attention will be paid to the iconographic meaning of the artistic monuments, their intended audiences, and their points of comparison and divergence from Suetonius, thus revealing the complex nature of Roman culture and society in the early imperial period.  

  1. D. Hurley, Suetonius. The Caesars. ISBN 10: 1603843132 (required, paper)
  2. A. Barrett, ed. Lives of the Caesars ISBN 10: 1405127554 (required, paper);
Assignment/ExamDetails% of Total Grade
Particulars: Class participation, bibliography, 10 minute oral presentation, 10 page biography.

The schedule of courses on O.P.U.S. is the official listing of courses, including days and times they meet and the General Education Requirements they satisfy. Students should use course descriptions as general guidelines. Course requirements, grading details, book lists, and syllabi are subject to change.