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Parading Persia: West Asian Geopolitics and the Roman Triumph

  • Author(s): Maris, Carly
  • Advisor(s): Salzman, Michele
  • et al.
Creative Commons 'BY-NC-SA' version 4.0 license

Parading Persia: West Asian Geopolitics and the Roman Triumph is an investigation into East-West tensions during the first 500 years of Roman expansion into West Asia. The dissertation is divided into three case studies that: (1) look at local inscriptions and historical accounts to explore how three individual Roman generals warring with the dominant Asian-Persian empires for control over the region negotiated with the local populations and inserted themselves into West-Asian geopolitics; and (2) how these Roman generals then presented their campaigns and negotiations to the populace of the city of Rome, via spectacular military parades called ‘triumphs.’ Comparing Roman narratives with local evidence shows both the Roman adoption of West-Asian expressions of empire, while revealing that the maintenance of imagined sociocultural and geopolitical borders between the East and West were the result of Roman construction and presentation of empire in the city of Rome, and the perceived threat of Asian-Persian enemies.

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