The relationship between religion and politics (or religion and war) in Livy

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Your first research paper will be based entirely on your reading of Books I-V of Livy’s history of Rome (the Penguin edition entitled The Early History of Rome). You may choose to concentrate only on the sections included in the required reading for class, or you may go beyond those readings to explore other sections of Livy. In either case, the important thing is to develop a thesis or position on the basis of your reading, and then argue your case by citing directly out of the book. As in any such “argumentative” paper, the thesis should be stated plainly near the beginning of your paper, and the paper should end with a conclusion that sums up and/or amplifies the argument as you have developed it in the middle section. Please use standard academic English, and proofread your paper carefully for spelling and grammatical errors before submitting it. Further basic guidelines on length, formatting etc. follow at the end of this assignment.
Topic suggestions
Since you are supposed to be developing your own thesis, I am not going to demand or restrict you to any one thing. I can suggest a few areas to explore, however.
Interesting papers could be written on:
–The relationship between religion and politics (or religion and war) in Livy
–Class and social relationships (those of the Romans on the whole, and Livy’s own attitudes as he discusses the Struggle of the Orders, etc.)
–Mythology and other elements of Greek culture (since Livy was a Roman, not a Greek, what can we conclude from the many elements of Greek culture that he includes?)
–History as “the best medicine for a sick mind:” The use of moral examples and counterexamples; what do these tell us about Livy’s overall purpose in writing?
Keep these suggestions in mind as you read through Livy, and see which of these topics interests you. If you’d like some advice, I am available for consultation throughout the paper-writing period.
Length and formatting guidelines
This is to be approximately a 6 page paper (double-spaced, with one-inch margins). This figure assumes that you are using a normal font, that is, Times New Roman, 12-pt. If this font is not available or you choose not to use it, use Word Count to bring your paper to an equivalent length: It should be about 2,000 words or a little more.
A separate Title Page is not necessary, but you should give your paper an appropriate title that appears at the top of the first page, along with your name. Please also make sure to number your pages.
Source references: For this first paper, all your source references will be to Livy. This means your reference style can be very simple. Instead of footnotes or endnotes, you can simply add a reference note in parentheses at the end of a sentence. For example:
“According to Livy, the dedication of the temple to Juno on the Aventine Hill followed immediately upon the conquest of Veii, around the year 392 B.C.E. (Livy V.22).”
Two things you should NOT do:
1. Do NOT cite Livy by referring to the page number in the Penguin paperback, or any other English translation.
2. It is not necessary to include a direct quotation from the text! In fact, you should use quotations only sparingly, and only when appropriate: for example, when it is important to show the exact terms in which a certain statement is made by your source.

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