A survey of economic life in ancient Greece and Rome, which involved both primitive subsistence agriculture and a complex international marketplace of luxury goods—often tightly regulated by predatory states. Topics will include the essential but diverse role of slavery, why debt crises plagued rich and poor alike, the degree to which banking facilitated international trade, and how governments manipulated the silver content of coinage to cover budget shortfalls or finance armies. Also considered are the reasons behind the invention and spread of coinage as a medium of exchange. Meets the Critical Perspectives: Social Inequality requirement. (Not offered 2019-20).
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