Welcoming newcomers: Lessons for our times from ancient Rome

Author: 
Date created: 
2019-12-06
Identifier: 
etd20624
Keywords: 
Ancient Rome
Migration
Citizenship
Welcoming
Multiculturalism
Diversity
Abstract: 

At a time of rising anti-immigration sentiment in much of the modern Western world, this project explores what we can learn about welcoming from ancient Rome, which was considered remarkable for its openness to newcomers even by its contemporaries. Through Rome’s founding myths as described in Virgil’s The Aeneid and Livy’s The Early History of Rome, as well as through numerous ancient and modern historians, this project explores why and how ancient Rome was so welcoming, and the results of that attitude. The purpose throughout is to extract ideas that usefully apply to dilemmas surrounding modern migration. Roman society and sensibilities were very different from our own, so we can’t expect to import ancient ideas wholesale. But this project concludes that the attitudes and principles that made Rome so remarkably open to newcomers can point us toward potential actions, deeper understandings, and useful questions about our own approach to welcoming in an era of increasing negativity toward migration.

Document type: 
Graduating extended essay / Research project
Rights: 
This thesis may be printed or downloaded for non-commercial research and scholarly purposes. Copyright remains with the author.
File(s): 
Supervisor(s): 
Emily O'Brien
Department: 
Arts & Social Sciences: Liberal Studies Program
Thesis type: 
(Project) M.A.L.S.
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