Colgate University

First-Year Course Offerings — Fall 2022

FSEM 175   Emperors and Empire: The Roman Imperium
RestrictionsNo 2025 2024 2023
DistributionHuman Thought and Expression
Core AreaNone

Faculty Profile for Professor Stull

For more than a thousand years, the idea of the Roman Empire shaped the destiny of peoples. Its influence extended across Europe, North Africa, and the Middle East, and one can make the case that it persists still, affecting our deepest notions about international relations and the nature of government. Students investigate the origin and development of Roman imperial ideology. Where did it come from? What were its defining elements? How did it adapt to changing circumstances? Why has it endured? Students examine not only deep political structures but also unforgettable individuals—famous emperors who changed the course of history (Augustus, Constantine, Justinian, Charlemagne, Frederick II) and brilliant writers who critiqued or celebrated what empire entailed (Vergil, Tacitus, Suetonius, Dante, and others). Students with an interest in fields such as history, literature, political science, religion, and classics will find much here to excite their curiosity. Students who successfully complete this seminar will earn credit for a 200-level CLAS course and satisfy one half of the human thought and expression areas of inquiry requirement.

William Stull is Associate Professor in the Department of the Classics and the Program in Medieval and Renaissance Studies. He has always been fascinated by the stories told in history and literature, and by all the various ways in which the Greek and Roman past has remained alive and relevant—studied, contested, reimagined—through the centuries and down to the present day.