Regarding the Ancient Romans

I honestly don’t understand the ancient Romans (was watching some documentaries this evening). How is it possible to advance so much in technology, art and education and prosper even more and yet, to become a heartless, sell-endulging blood-seeking barbarian… It doesn’t make any sense to me.

Post a comment »

This is the admin speaking...
Eugenia wrote on August 20th, 2006 at 5:47 AM PST:

USA doesn’t have a Colloseum where people are thrown into lions in order to please the masses. There is Hollywood and video games, but these are fictional and no one gets hurt. And there is no slavery or religion problems anymore (at least not in California). In ancient Rome 1 every 3 citizens was a slave. And George Bush is not sleeping with the wives of his generals neither he is a pederast (we’re pretty sure of it).

There are some imperialistic tactics which are pretty normal when you are the most powerful country in the world, but nothing compared to Rome’s wars.

So, no Thom, I don’t really see the parallel.

Thom Holwerda wrote on August 20th, 2006 at 6:30 AM PST:

Eugenia, of course you cannt compare the two states vis-a-vis; the world has changed a lot since then. However, the general lines are still there.

You say the colosseum, I say television warfare in Iraq, as well as the violence in Hollywood– it is only that our current technology makes it possible to enact violence and gore without people getting hurt; the hunger for it among people is still there. You say the emperor sleeping with other women while preaching a whole different kind of lifestyle to his citizens, I say Bush’s neo-conservative Christian teachings while in fact sustaining the biggest sex industry in the world. You say 1 out of 3 was a slave, I say the total dependence of millions of people and families upon their employers. Of course, it’s less barbaric these days, bu the general concept is the same.

So, no slavery? Well, not in the literal sense, but the philosophical sense of slavery still is omnipresent in the Western world.

And hence, the US will go down like the Roman empire has gone down. It is inevitable; throughout history, great powers have risen because they were culturally or technically more advanced, after which they all became subject to hubris, a word you as Greek will know more than well :) .

This is the admin speaking...
Eugenia wrote on August 20th, 2006 at 6:41 AM PST:

Just because you can draw such parallels it doesn’t mean that it’s the same. We are way better now than these people were 2,000 years ago. USA is not Rome. And besides, all these things you wrote about USA, also apply for all the western world too. Europeans live a nice life for example, even if they are not Americans. But in the Rome days, only Italy had richness and barbarism. The greeks, the spanish, the gals, the jews, were all in deep shit instead under the Roman empire.

Andreas wrote on August 20th, 2006 at 9:52 AM PST:

My guess is that their political system was the cause.

Thom Holwerda wrote on August 20th, 2006 at 11:27 AM PST:

Andreas, the Roman Empire was not always an autocracy. It has always been a winding road from oligarchy to autocracy; in fact, the United States’ governmental system was based on the Roman system.

But, Eugenia, it is inevitable. Don’t you see the parallel with the US?

Stefan wrote on August 21st, 2006 at 3:25 AM PST:

“panem et circenses”, bread and circus.
This is a phrase that Romans invented and Western civilization of today perfected. Pretty much the same as 2000 years ago, with different moral values obviously. But the essence is the same, the key of a successful government.
It can be worse, as long as we have the bread, we can accept or reject the circus, so we should not complain though.

l3v1 wrote on August 21st, 2006 at 9:31 AM PST:

“prosper even more and yet, to become a heartless, sell-endulging blood-seeking barbarian” – I don’t think this is new, it probably happened many times before them, and it certainly heppened after them, and it will probably happen in the future. Prospering civilizations, while evolving on one side, slowly dumbing down on the other side. I think “barbarism” is in our nature as humans, but our living style, society, religion, etc. has made us pretty good in surpressing our darker side. Still, numerous examples point to us not always being successful in it, and this might just be one of those things leading to our eventual doom.

Jaramir wrote on August 24th, 2006 at 2:32 AM PST:

“panem et circenses” == “Mc Donald’s and Television”?

or also.. all your people needs can be shortened too just tow things: food and distractions. give em plenty and you can govern a nation

it would be cool to think “hey! we have evolved! we need world wide peace, global colture and education! and no more underdeveloped nations!” but, sadly, all people ask to the governament is still food and distractions

in many ways we are still just like the romans (and many other nations before and after the romans) it’s just the “west” that is moving around the world with the same effects whereever it lands

Comments are closed as this blog post is now archived.

Lines, paragraphs break automatically. HTML allowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

The URI to TrackBack this blog entry is this. And here is the RSS 2.0 for comments on this post.