Ancient Roman Society Vs. America Essay

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A Comparison: America vs. Rome

America has grown since its humble beginnings in such a way that it is now overwhelmed by its own greatness. Actually though, the original quote was by Titus Livius, a Roman historian who died around 15 A.D, and he said “Rome has grown since its humble beginnings in such a way that it is now overwhelmed by its own greatness.” Like Rome, America has become overwhelmed by its own greatness. We Americans now shake our heads in disgust at the antics of Miley Cyrus… we question the works of Tarantino and we criticize the values of our country’s leaders, but we do not seem to fully understand the gravity of the state of our society and government. On the other hand, many have reached a state of cynicism, also forgetting on what America was founded, and as George Santayana once said, “Those who do not remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” Indeed, this great country seems to have forgotten the rise… and the fall… of great empires like itself. This speech will be a reminder of where America has been, where we are now, and where we could be if we changed course. So in this speech, I will juxtapose three vital components of Rome and America, first comparing our societies, then our governments. Finally, I will show the main difference between America and Rome, and how we might yet be saved.

Ancient Roman society was robust, fluid, and exciting. Personal freedoms were at an all-time high, just as they were and still mostly are in modern America. Art was a means of displaying the creativity and ingenuity of both the artist, and of the society in which the artist lived. Early American artists such as Norman Rockwell, Grandma Moses, and Mary Cassatt depicted various aspects of their societies. However...

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... to turn, nothing to which they could go back and begin again. We do.

We have seen how America and Ancient Rome are similar. The first similarity lies in society. The deterioration of art, of entertainment, and the prevalence of crime are the first three parallels. The second similarity is in the government. Governmental corruption is at least as prevalent today as it was during the decline of Ancient Rome.When examining the various parallels, the two nations seem nearly identical. However, the great difference lies in America’s foundation in God, and it is the difference that could very well be America’s saving grace.


Schaeffer, Francis A. How Should We Then Live?: The Rise and Decline of Western Thought and Culture. Old Tappan, NJ: F.H. Revell, 1976. Print.

Pearcey, Nancy. Saving Leonardo. Nashville, TN: B&H Group, 2010. Print.

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