When Rome was not Rome

Histories of ancient cultures often present the image of clearly recognizable peoples. Those who are centered in historical canons—Egyptians, Greeks, Romans—are often subject to the most longstanding and unyielding historical expectations. In this talk, Hopkins discusses a single object, which has enabled imperialist and essentialist stories about who Romans were, where their traditions came from and how their capital came to be a cultural and political center in the ancient Mediterranean.

John North Hopkins is Associate Professor of Ancient Mediterranean Art and Archaeology in the Department of Art History and Institute of Fine Arts at New York University. He is author of The Genesis of Roman Architecture (Yale, 2016), winner of the Spiro Kostof Award from the Society of Architectural Historians, and co-editor of Object Biographies: Collaborative Approaches to Ancient Mediterranean Art (Menil/Yale, 2020) and Forgery Beyond Deceit (Oxford, in press). At IAS he is finishing a new book, The Instability of Roman Art.



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