10-Minute Talks: Paradoxes of the Roman Arena

by Professor Kathleen Coleman FBA

29 Dec 2021

Colosseum in Rome without people in the morning

In this talk, Professor Kathleen Coleman FBA highlights certain paradoxes at the root of Roman civilisation, specifically those related to the staging of violent displays in the arena. Virtually everything that fuelled Roman society can be implicated: ideology, religion, class structure, environment, economy. The Romans, evidently, tolerated these paradoxes. Can we learn anything from them?

Lead image: Colosseum in Rome without people in the morning. © Anna Kurzaeva via Getty Images.

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