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Roman Art

Roman Art

Out of Print

  • Date Published: November 1998
  • availability: Unavailable - out of print February 2010
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521644631

Out of Print

Unavailable - out of print February 2010
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About the Authors
  • In this refreshing reappraisal of the art and architecture of ancient Rome, Eve D'Ambra focuses on the personal, social and cultural identity of its subjects. The acquisition of art, whether the purchase of copies of Greek statuary, the construction of a sumptuous villa or the commissioning of a portrait head, played a crucial role in Roman society in which displays of wealth and culture were necessary to gain and maintain power. The question of identity is key to understanding the nature of the Roman empire, which seemed infinitely expandable at its peak, welcomed foreigners to become Romans, freed slaves to citizen status and allowed social mobility within a strictly hierarchical social order. D'Ambra discusses patronage on different social levels, from that of the emperor and his court to those of shopkeepers and of artisans, in diverse regions of the empire and in distinct ethnic groups. She compares the imagery of the state and of military victory with the humblest funerary reliefs. Many provincial artworks were based on imperial models, but others were created in resistance to prevailing imperial standards. D'Ambra draws on a range of sculpture, wall paintings, decorative arts, coins and architecture, from Italy to the edges of the empire, evoking the traditionalism and the adaptability of Roman art. She also looks ahead to the art and architecture of the fourth century AD, which despite the emergence of Christianity as the dominant religion continued to be influenced by Roman styles and themes. Eve D'Ambra is Associate Professor in the Department of Art at Vassar College, Poughkeepsie, New York. She has taught and published widely in the field of Roman art and society.

    • First book to examine Roman art in terms of gender and class, both upper and lower
    • Highly illustrated
    • Text accessible and written for general audience
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    Reviews & endorsements

    "D'Ambra goes beyond basic stylistic analyses to use Roman art in the study of Roman identity....Recommended for both academic and larger public library art collections." Library Journal

    "Ambra offers readers an insightful look at the artistic side of a culture better known for its political and militaristic styles." Jason Zappe, Copley News Service

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    Product details

    • Date Published: November 1998
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521644631
    • length: 176 pages
    • dimensions: 200 x 100 x 18 mm
    • weight: 0.47kg
    • contains: 100 colour illus.
    • availability: Unavailable - out of print February 2010
  • Table of Contents

    Part I. Empire and its Myths:
    1. Foundations
    2. Reactions to dominant cultures
    3. From republic to empire
    Part II. The Social Order:
    4. Identity and status
    5. Elites
    6. Urban working classes
    7. Women and the family
    8. Outsiders and insiders
    Part III. The City and Urban Space:
    9. The city as civilization
    10. Civic spectacle
    11. Ruler and subjects
    Part IV. Portraiture and Commemoration:
    12. High and low
    13. Modesty and adornment
    14. Heroic modes
    15. Preserving memory
    Part V. Houses and Painted Interiors:
    16. Duty and domesticity
    17. Gardens
    18. Painted perspectives
    Part IV. The Limits of Empire:
    19. Town and country
    20. Power and privilege
    21. Gods and cults.

  • Author

    Eve D'Ambra, Vassar College, New York

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