The Roman Family Center Of Roman Society — страница 3

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structure. The only family O?Roark mentions is the nuclear family. His essay is one that looks at the relationships between the parents and the children; therefore there is no talk of any extended family structure. The two essays contrast on the topic not because they disagree, but rather one mentions family structure, as one of its main points and the other does not. Husband ? Wife RelationsThe other major contrast between the two essays is talk of the husband-wife relationship in the Christian period. Once again it is the Shaw essay that talks about the subject, the O?Roark one that leaves it out. Shaw states the husband had control over the wife in much the same way that he did over the children . He was the one with the power and she was not . ?Wives were not permitted so

much as to dispense alms or to change their clothes without the husband?s permission? . Again, as with the sons, the wife had a love-fear relationship to the husband . Most all-domestic disputes were kept within the four walls of the home? the wife was the most likely looser at the hand of stronger husband . Often when the husband was upset or in a rage it was the wife that was the looser, she was usually the first in his path . As well husbands were not always faithful the wives. It was almost seen as a customary practice. The husband was to have a woman outside of the marriage . The same leisure was not extended to the wife. The wife was watched over by the husband as if she were domestic property . This was to prevent her from having relationships with other men . Maltreatment

of the wife could often be a common occurrence. Often the only defense that the wife had was to promote the idea of love and respect between the partners . Shaw Concludes saying not all relationships were this way, however this was the case for a lot of married women . These ideas are similar to ones from classical times in which the wife was under the husband, and the husband acted almost as a teacher to the wife . In classical times the wife was to be pure and devoted to only one man , as Shaw states. In the O?Roark essay once again this is a topic that is left out. In the talk of parent to child relationships it can be assumed that O?Roark left out husband-wife relations because they were not central to his argument. Once again it is not the case that the two historians

disagreed on the subject, but only the fact that one included this information in their argument and the other did not. Evaluation of SourcesThis is a great situation for an analysis. One topic, two different historians, two separate sources of information used by each. Shaw uses one main source so often it is basically his only source. The Source he uses is a Roman church father from late antiquity, Augustine. Augustine switched over to Christianity . After he was baptized and converted he became the Bishop of Hippo until he died . Augustine wrote many important theological writings in the late fourth and early fifth century on the church, Christianity, and God . There are a few strengths and weaknesses to Augustine as a source, Shaw points to some of these. Starting with the

strengths, it can be concluded that Augustine held a privileged status within the Christian church . Augustine came from a good family and was a respected man . His accounts are usually assumed to be accurate records. Just as today we value the writings and opinions of the church heads, it seems that given his status at the time one could value his accounts based on his position. Who better to leave accounts of Roman society then a church head, who was educated and could record many of the events in society. Augustine is also a good source for the fact that most of the sources of the time are biased to the upper class ideals and practices. Augustine?s church based writings and opinions might be slightly different, and hence valuable as a different opinion . Lastly Augustine is

valuable for the most obvious reason; he was a firsthand witness who was living at the time. As the Bishop of Hippo Augustine was able to have first hand observation of many families and parishioners to base his writings. Thanks to his position, as Bishop, Augustine had both the time and resources to observe and write. These opportunities may not have been available to those in lower, less well off positions in society. On the other hand there is some noticeable problems with this source. The main one being that preaching and practicing are two different things . Augustine has no surviving writings from the time before his conversion to Christianity . This being the case we cannot compare his writings to early ones of his own. If one had access to his earlier writings they might