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The Art of the Roman Empire

AD 100-450

Jas Elsner



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Oxford University Press
24 May 2018
The passage from Imperial Rome to the era of late antiquity, when the Roman Empire underwent a religious conversion to Christianity, saw some of the most significant and innovative developments in Western culture. This stimulating book investigates the role of the visual arts, the great diversity of paintings, statues, luxury arts, and masonry, as both reflections and agents of those changes.

Jas' Elsner's ground-breaking account discusses both Roman and early Christian art in relation to such issues as power, death, society, acculturation, and religion. By examining questions of reception, viewing, and the culture of spectacle alongside the more traditional art-historical themes of imperial patronage and stylistic change, he presents a fresh and challenging interpretation of an extraordinarily rich cultural crucible in which many fundamental developments of later European art had their origins.

This second edition includes a new discussion of the Eurasian context of Roman art, an updated bibliography, and new, full colour illustrations.
By:   Jas Elsner
Imprint:   Oxford University Press
Country of Publication:   United Kingdom
Edition:   2nd Revised edition
Dimensions:   Height: 238mm,  Width: 168mm,  Spine: 17mm
Weight:   628g
ISBN:   9780198768630
ISBN 10:   019876863X
Series:   Oxford History of Art
Pages:   368
Publication Date:   24 May 2018
Audience:   College/higher education ,  Professional and scholarly ,  Primary ,  Undergraduate
Format:   Paperback
Publisher's Status:   Active

Jas Elsner is Professor of Late Antique Art at the University of Oxford, Humfrey Payne Senior Research Fellow at Corpus Christi College, Oxford, and Visiting Professor of Art and Religion at the University of Chicago. In 2009 he was elected a foreign honorary member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and since 2013 has been Principal Investigator in the Empires of Faith Project. He is married with four children and lives in Oxford.

Reviews for The Art of the Roman Empire: AD 100-450

Elsner's innovative goal was to address the movement of aspects of Roman art into the east, and the presence of some aspects of Asian material culture in the Roman world (xv), and he succeeds in doing so. * Fred S. Kleiner, Boston University, Journal of Roman Archaeology * A very accessible introduction to the art, and the cultural and political history, of the period. It is eminently readable; pitched to the undergraduate student (including an immensely useful updated bibliographical guide), it is approachable enough for the general reader, and would likely be the kind of book I would recommend to an enthusiastic sixth-former. The illustrations are well-chosen, and the supplementary material is an added bonus: several maps of the empire at the beginning, and a detailed timeline at the end are hugely valuable assets for any ancient historian or classicist. * Stuart Thomson, Classics for All * Review from previous edition exciting and original... a vibrant impression of creative energy and innovation... Elsner constantly surprises and intrigues the reader by approaching familiar material in new ways. * Professor Avril Cameron, Professor Emerita, University of Oxford * His understanding of the way Second Sophistic and Christianity interact is marvellous... a highly individual work... wonderful visual and comparative analysis * Professor Natalie Boymel Kampen *

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