Macquarie University
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The old female power: how women shaped the history of Rome

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posted on 2022-03-28, 23:01 authored by Bianca Sanderson
My thesis aims to investigate the role and portrayal of women at critical points in Roman history, where they appear again and again in moments that shape its history. My thesis will explore portrayal of the use of power by these women in our ancient sources. This 'power' will be examined through the concept of 'power feminism' as articulated by N. Wolf. The scope of this investigation extends from the founding of Rome until the end of the Nero's reign in 68AD and aims to investigate importance of women in shaping the course of history of ancient Rome. The study is divided into four chronological periods, which are in turn divided into case studies of women who are depicted in Roman history as using power to influence public events. This author will consider how our ancient sources viewed female use of power, how women achieved power, what it was employed for, how its use changed Roman history and whether these women followed or set precedents. The research will attempt to ascertain whether the use of power by women at critical points in history changed the course of Roman history, and whether that use of power emerged and changed over time.


Table of Contents

Introduction -- 1. The regal period -- 2. The early and middle Republic -- 3. The late Republic -- 4. Augustus and the Julio-Claudians -- Conclusion.


Theoretical thesis. Bibliography: pages 203-217

Awarding Institution

Macquarie University

Degree Type

Thesis PhD


PhD, Macquarie University, Faculty of Arts, Department of Ancient History

Department, Centre or School

Department of Ancient History

Year of Award


Principal Supervisor

Peter Keegan


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1 online resource (217 pages)

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