Roman third century crisis?

Failure of nerve on the part of the ruling classes   3 votes - 60 %
Reaffirmation of traditional values   1 vote - 20 %
-   1 vote - 20 %
Economic crisis has been exaggerated   3 votes - 60 %
Economic crisis has not been exaggerated   1 vote - 20 %
-   1 vote - 20 %
Significantly christianized before conversion of Constantine   3 votes - 60 %
Not significantly christianized before conversion of Constantine   1 vote - 20 %
 
5 Total Votes
I guess this report... by Metatone (4.00 / 1) #1 Sat May 05, 2012 at 04:57:18 AM EST
on Internet porn proves my comment in your last diary was wrong. There is a growing Christian caucus in parliament and in combination with the tabloid "won't you think of the children" tendency, they are going to be able to get quite far with policies before they meet any resistance. 

Not sure how influential the Christian MPs are by TheophileEscargot (2.00 / 0) #5 Sat May 05, 2012 at 07:32:16 AM EST
I think overall it's another case of the "propose something twice as extreme as you want, then when there's outrage scale it back" technique. (Like when they leaked plans to cut income tax to 40p, but actually cut it to 45p.) So, the actual Internet censorship they bring in will probably be slightly less extreme than these proposals.
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It is unlikely that the good of a snail should reside in its shell: so is it likely that the good of a man should?
[ Parent ]
True... by Metatone (4.00 / 1) #7 Sat May 05, 2012 at 07:45:26 AM EST
I guess I worry that this is the area where Cameron throws a sop to traditional conservatives, by taking these proposals seriously enough for them to get even halfway implemented.

That may change, but since they are busy soft-pedalling the presentation of their economic policies and things like NHS privatisation, then "culture war" is the new symbolic territory where he proves he's a true blue...



[ Parent ]
what does he mean by later? by gzt (4.00 / 1) #2 Sat May 05, 2012 at 06:27:17 AM EST
Harl makes a good case, but I'm not entirely convinced. For one thing, Julian tried to copy Constantine's idea of making priests a distinct social class (ordo), so it does seem to me that an Empire-wide religious structure was useful. While there's not much evidence for a rise of Christianity, there's not much evidence against it: sources and archaeology are a bit sparse. Harl also considers the missionary monks who took direct action the pagans to be a later development, but I wonder if they might have been active earlier too, which would have made Christianity more of a bottom-up grassroots movement than something imposed from the top.

For the "missionary monks". There wasn't any monasticism to speak of until the end of the third century and it didn't take off until Constantine, so the exact time frame is significant here.

He agrees with you AFAIK by TheophileEscargot (2.00 / 0) #3 Sat May 05, 2012 at 06:36:35 AM EST
But given the sparseness of the sources for the period, I'm never quite sure that "there's no evidence of X before date Y" really means "there was no X before date Y".
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It is unlikely that the good of a snail should reside in its shell: so is it likely that the good of a man should?
[ Parent ]
the sources are rather sparse. by gzt (4.00 / 1) #4 Sat May 05, 2012 at 06:55:03 AM EST
I mean, you have St Anthony, supposedly the first monk and the father of monasticism. He went out in the desert. But he apparently knew people out there, and things exploded so fast that, you know, was he really the only one, the first one? Even in the history written a century later that touts him as such, St Anthony places his sister with a group of consecrated virgins and goes under the tutelage of a local hermit. And you do have other ascetics out in the desert, and they go all the way back to second temple Judaism (or earlier). St Anthony was new in that he became a big, influential figure.

[ Parent ]
I think Constantine was certainly important by TheophileEscargot (2.00 / 0) #6 Sat May 05, 2012 at 07:37:16 AM EST
But I think there must have been a big grassroots Christian movement he took advantage of as well. If it was a rural or poor movement there probably wouldn't be much evidence of it.

I mean it's not the case that you had, say, a pagan emperor who enforced paganism across the empire; then a Zoroastrian emperor who enforced Zoroastrianism across the empire, then back to pagan, then a Manichean, or whatever. Most other emperors didn't make big religious changes across the empire. So I don't think Christianization is likely to have just been because Emperor Constantine happened to pick up a particular cult that wasn't even increasing.
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It is unlikely that the good of a snail should reside in its shell: so is it likely that the good of a man should?

[ Parent ]
Have been to Tokyo a handful of times by Scrymarch (4.00 / 1) #8 Sat May 05, 2012 at 07:59:36 AM EST
Never noticed the manhole covers ... Quite a cool idea.

Sounds promising on the personal and work fronts. Good luck eh.

Iambic Web Certified

Thanks! [nt] by TheophileEscargot (2.00 / 0) #9 Sat May 05, 2012 at 08:08:23 AM EST

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It is unlikely that the good of a snail should reside in its shell: so is it likely that the good of a man should?
[ Parent ]
3rd Century Rome by jimgon (4.00 / 1) #10 Sat May 05, 2012 at 10:38:56 AM EST
I never got into Third Century Roman history.  I'm always suspicious of modern theories that involve the leaving of the gold standard and the end of civilization.  It seems too cozy in relation to the rise of the modern goldbugs.  But as I wrote I haven't studied the theory.




---------------
Technician - "We can't even get decent physical health care. Mental health is like witchcraft here."
History repeats itself, repeatedly... by dmg (4.00 / 1) #11 Sat May 05, 2012 at 01:27:09 PM EST
Coming off a gold standard is a symptom of malaise, not the cause.

It is important to differentiate the different types of money (debt, value store, medium of exchange) as what is good for one purpose may not be good for another. Your goal for the USD's future value may not be the same as that of a certain group of politicians.
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dmg - HuSi's most dimwitted overprivileged user.

[ Parent ]
two bits by lm (4.00 / 1) #12 Sat May 05, 2012 at 01:37:15 PM EST
Meet the Romans sounds a bit like a book I read awhile ago As the Romans Did which does much of the same thing, try to give a sense of what ordinary Roman lives were like. I find such to be much more interesting that `normal' history that focuses on big events and rulers.

The last couple of decades have seen quite a bit of economic work done on the Roman empire (both east and west) that I find fascinating.


There is no more degenerate kind of state than that in which the richest are supposed to be the best.
Cicero, The Republic
buying a property... and moving in together by wiredog (4.00 / 1) #13 Sat May 05, 2012 at 02:04:41 PM EST
At that point you might as well buy a ring.

Earth First!
(We can strip mine the rest later.)

where is Rogerborg nowadays? by Dr H0ffm4n (4.00 / 2) #15 Tue May 08, 2012 at 02:24:05 AM EST
He'd have something to say on the matter

[ Parent ]
Wikipedia by wiredog (4.00 / 1) #16 Tue May 08, 2012 at 08:02:22 AM EST
The Alyson Hannigan reference is distinctive.

Earth First!
(We can strip mine the rest later.)

[ Parent ]
Also on /. by wiredog (4.00 / 1) #17 Tue May 08, 2012 at 08:03:37 AM EST
Trolling merrily away.

Earth First!
(We can strip mine the rest later.)

[ Parent ]
Shhhhhh [nt] by TheophileEscargot (4.00 / 1) #19 Tue May 08, 2012 at 02:23:53 PM EST

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It is unlikely that the good of a snail should reside in its shell: so is it likely that the good of a man should?
[ Parent ]
Crisis Of The Third Century by jump the ladder (4.00 / 1) #14 Sat May 05, 2012 at 06:11:35 PM EST
Was not economic or the Western  barbarians but the rise of the Sassanids in Persia which meant that Roman empire had to become focused on a military superpower threatening its richest provinces in the East, hence the shift to Constantinople.

Pr0n filtering by Herring (4.00 / 1) #18 Tue May 08, 2012 at 11:29:28 AM EST
Been reading a few reactions on the Grauniad site. There are quite a lot of people who don't get that, without whitelisting - and that's impractical, it's impossible to have an effective pr0n filter.

The suggestion comes up now and again "Why doesn't someone start an ISP that blocks all the filth?". Well because they'd fail and get sued by some nobend with nothing better to do.

And these fuckwits don't seem to have heard of the phrase "false sense of security".

christ, we're all old now - StackyMcRacky