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Roman People Paperback – July 27, 2004

ISBN-13: 978-0072869040 ISBN-10: 0072869046 Edition: 4th

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: McGraw-Hill Humanities/Social Sciences/Languages; 4 edition (July 27, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0072869046
  • ISBN-13: 978-0072869040
  • Product Dimensions: 7.5 x 1 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #383,909 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Professor Robert B. Kebric teaches Greek and Roman History, History of the Olympic Games, and the Humanities at the University of Louisville. He is the author of a number of books and articles, including Greek People, and the companion volume of Roman People. He was born in Palo Alto, California, and attended the University of Southern California, where he was a Phi Beta Kappa and a Woodrow Wilson Fellow. He received his M.A. and Ph.D. from Binghamton University in New York. He has been a historical consultant to Time-Life Books and is a published photographer. He has directed and taught programs of study in Greece, Italy, Egypt, Turkey, and Israel, and spends extended periods in England, Australia, and Hawaii. He lives with his wife, Judith Hartung Kebric, and four basenjis in Louisville, Kentucky.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on September 7, 1999
Format: Paperback
I was dissappointed somewhat when I first got this book, as I was expecting it to cover the social conditions of one particular period of the Roman Empire instead of being a general history. When I finally sat down to read it, though, I was pleasantly surprised by what a gem of a book this is.
Not exactly social history, not exactly general history, this book instead considers the lives of various people throughout the history of the Roman state which are either important in their own right (those of important political figures) or else important as indicators of significant trends (e.g. the rise of Christianity).
Perhaps why I like this book most, though, is the author's crips style and lucid reasoning. Conclusions are always supported with reference to original sources, and when these are either lacking or ambigious then clear-headed deduction is used to try to reconstruct what most likely might have happened. A fine example of this is when Kebric argues that Roman incompetence was probably more responsible for the protracted siege of Syracuse than any fantastic siege inventions on the part of Archimedes.
Given how much ink has been spilled on Roman history, I can perhaps give no greater praise to this book than by saying it showed me things I had never seen or thought of before.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on September 10, 1999
Format: Paperback
After reading Kebric's "Greek People," I thought I'd give "Roman People" a try as well. Both are well-written social histories of ancient Greece and Rome that look at the daily lives of the people through the eyes of those who were there. Kebric makes liberal use of primary-source material to support his narrative, and he keeps the reader engaged with small vignets about the significant contributions of individual Roman people.
I thoroughly recommend this book.
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Format: Paperback
In his preface, Robert Kebric describes "Roman People" as an alternative to event-and-theory history books. This is more of a people-and-event book. It is not a social history, though it includes some of that element. It's literally about Roman people, most often notable people, and how they experienced history from the 3rd century BC through the 3rd century AD. As Roman society was a very political one, particularly for the people we remember, this is often a political history viewed through the actions of its participants. Kebric relates their stories but also includes excerpts from ancient historians and letters, allowing the people to tell their own stories whenever possible. There are black-and-white photos and maps throughout.

Chapters are organized by time period and by theme, from Rome's expansion, though its slave revolts, transition from republic to empire, eruption of Mt. Vesuvius, the Severan dynasty, and the increasing influence of Christianity. Kebric focuses attention on people one might normally think of as of secondary importance, in addition to the prominent figures, such as a chapter dedicated to Brutus, Julius Caesar's assassin, a great deal about the influence of Tiberius' astrologer Thrasyllus. Beside events and people, there are chapters dedicated to old age in Roman society and the popularity of chariot races and the Circus Maximus. There are useful "Suggestions for Further Reading" at the end of each chapter.

Kebric makes an effort to understand many of the prominent and influential women in Roman society, so women are not under-represented. The middle and lower classes get little attention due to a lack of information about specific people. There is not a lot here about lifestyles, such as daily routines, medicine, courtship, art, sex, or social mores.
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Format: Paperback
While Kebric's book is best read as a supplement, there is no doubt that this is one of the better historical narratives I've ever read. Kebric's book teaches without the tedious dryness of a regular history book thanks to his well-organized and friendly style which reads more like a series of related stories than a history. An abundant supply of original sources compliment the book, many of them interesting and often humorous!

I recommend this book if you want a quick overview of Roman history including a look into the lives of important Roman figures. It's a good quick and easy read.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
An easy reading look at the lives and events of ancient Rome. I'm using this as a textbook but, anyone who has an interest in Roman history will enjoy.
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