From 509 BCE to its conquest of the Mediterranean, the Roman Republic was a model of stability. As it grew, however, it became unwieldy and fell prey to the bad influences of the tyrants and chieftains it absorbed. Focusing on the pivotal years from 180 to 133 BCE, Duncan examines a society in crisis. Romans of that period faced rising economic inequality, political polarization, rampant corruption, and endemic social and ethnic prejudice. Then, Rome fell. Did it have to? Could it have reformed and regained its former strength? Parsing the Roman experience for lessons applicable to the U.S. today, Duncan tells the story with the wit and command familiar to audiences of his “History of Rome” podcast, named Best Educational Podcast at the 2010 podcast awards.
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