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Poverty and Social Inequality in the Ancient Mediterranean

Dr. Bob Morley, an assistant professor at Augustana College, will present a lecture: "Poverty and Social Inequality in the Ancient Mediterranean: What Is the Evidence?"

Dr. Morley is a 2011 graduate of Augustana, and earned an M.A. and Ph.D in Classics from the University of Iowa. 

Abstract: In the ancient world, those without money and social standing could not, generally, receive an education. As a result, the literary evidence that survives from the ancient world, and to a certain extent the archaeological evidence, primarily provides us with information about the lives of those who had wealth and high social standing.

Those who lived in poverty did not leave writings about their lives. Their possessions, few as they were, leave little material evidence in the archaeological record. Who were the poorest members of society and what were their lives like? This talk will look at what evidence does exist for the poorest inhabitants of the ancient world and examine the challenges in using literary evidence, written by the wealthy, to get a clear picture of what it was like to be in poverty. 


Room 102

Hanson Hall of Science

726 35th St.
Rock Island, IL 61201
United States

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Kirsten Day