For thousands of miles around the Roman Mediterranean, foreign slaves were as much a part of the landscape as the fields and farms on which they worked, their presence as undisputed as sea, clouds, and mountains. Anyone might be a slave or might be free. Many in their lifetimes would be both. It was a matter of mutable fortune, part of the conditions of life for rich and poor, black, brown, and white, for Germans, Africans, and Gauls, a status so ubiquitous and little challenged that it leaves a huge challenge now to anyone who wants to comprehend it. Poetry and pottery, theater and history books can all play their variously deceptive parts in our imaginations. None gives a picture that is complete.
Wednesday, March 23, 2011
Labor economy ...
... Peter Stothard on Tools of the Trade. (Hat tip, Dave Lull.)