Dr. Randall S. Howarth is Associate Professor of Ancient and Medieval History at Mercyhurst College in Erie, Pennsylvania. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. Dr. Howarth has been Secretary/Treasurer of the Association of Ancient Historians since 2003.
2006 0-7734-5812-3 This study explores the various influences that inform and shape our understanding of the early Roman Republic. It is common knowledge that the demise of the Roman Republic in its last one hundred years was not only the occasion for the shaping of the traditional narrative for the much earlier Republic but that it was, in addition, the source of both the discourse and the tone of that history as we have inherited it from the Romans. Nevertheless, our increasing cognizance of this truth has not resulted in any significant movement away from the fundamentals of that inherited narrative – until now. The author first shows how the sum of numerous modern treatments of early Rome represent an unanswered and devastating attack on the communis opinio and then proceeds to show how an alternative narrative, one that substitutes regional conflict with the putative one known as “the struggle of the orders,” makes the most sense as the dynamic informing the evolution of Roman political institutions.