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HonorsŐ Freshman Sequence

HHI 21: Identity: Self in the World

Fall 2009

Themes/Discussion Handout


Monday, October 12

Ravaged Republic: Loyalty vs. Identity in the Early Roman Empire

Text: Chapter 7 (pp. 192-98).

Sources: Suetonius (pp. 176-90).


Wednesday, October 14

Ancient India and the Emergence of Caste

Text: Chapter 3 (pp. 54-63).

Sources: Rig Veda, The Laws of Manu (pp. 45-57).

1)      According to the Rig Veda, who created the universe?

2)      What makes the Hindu caste system different from other social hierarchies?

3)      What are the four major castes? Is there anyone outside of it?

4)      What is the status of women in Hindu society?


Friday, October 16

Ancient China and the Mandate of Heaven

Text: Chapter 4 (pp. 80-89).

1)      What are some of the difficulties of ruling China, in part or whole?

2)      How did the ruling dynasties get established in China?

3)      How was rulership justified in China?  What were some of the pitfalls?