Essay on Housing as Social Status Symbol in Rome

Essay on Housing as Social Status Symbol in Rome

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A home is a place to call one’s own. It is used for social interactions, shelter, and daily human maintenance. Houses also play a role in social structure. A person can be defined by the type of house they have because it symbolizes their income. This rule is active in modern and ancient civilizations. In Rome, housing was used to symbolize wealth and power: the bigger the house, the higher the status. Housing has always been a symbol of income and importance. In ancient Rome, this stereotype plays a significant role in society. Housing area and type outlined social classes, thus dividing the roman citizens and emphasizing different social groups.
“[In Rome] people from all walks of life came together to create a diverse society” (Little 164). Like in all societies, there were different social classes and divisions between citizens. Besides the emperor, senators held the highest class. They were considered to be the emperor’s social equals. Next were the Equites. These men served as calvary in the army. “Plebs” were the working class of Rome. They were composed of artisans, bakers, construction workers, etc. The lowest class was constructed of women and, just below them, slaves. Women were not regarded highly in society and meant to stay silent and submissive. Slaves made up one-third of the total population (Littell 164). This was due to the fact that slavery was “widespread” and “important to the economy because agriculture was “the most important industry in the [Roman] empire” (Littell 163). Rome made more use of slaves than in any previous civilization. Most slaves were conquered people that included men, women, and children brought back by Roman armies (Littell 164). There were two types of slaves: city and rustic. City ...


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...York: Oxford UP, 2011. 589-608. Questia School. Web. 5 May 2014.
Sear, Frank. Roman Architecture. London: Routledge, 1998. Questia School. Web. 5 May 2014.
---. Roman Architecture. London: Routledge, 1998. Questia School. Web. 5 May 2014.
Smith, J. T. Roman Villas: A Study in Social Structure. London: Routledge, 1997. Questia School. Web. 5 May 2014.
---. Roman Villas: A Study in Social Structure. London: Routledge, 1997. Questia School. Web. 5 May 2014.
Woolf, Greg. "8- Family History in the Roman North-West." The Roman Family in the Empire: Rome, Italy, and Beyond. Ed. Michele George. Oxford, England: Oxford UP, 2005. 231-54. Questia School. Web. 5 May 2014.
---. "8- Family History in the Roman North-West." The Roman Family in the Empire: Rome, Italy, and Beyond. Ed. Michele George. Oxford, England: Oxford UP, 2005. 231-54. Questia School. Web. 5 May 2014.

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