Loyola University Chicago

John Felice Rome Center

CLST 334R Introduction to Classical Archaeology - Rome

Fall 2016

Loyola University Chicago

John Felice Rome Center

An introduction to Classical Archaeology

(Anth 334/CLST 334)

Fall 2016

Provisional syllabus

Instructor: prof. Massimo Betello

Email: TBA

Hours: Wednesday 09:30-12:30

Total no. of contact hours: 45

Credits: 3

Office hours: after class or by appointment (email to arrange an appointment).

Course Description

This course focuses on the main explorations and achievements in the recovery of monuments of the ancient Greco-Roman world, particularly in Rome and Italy, and on the methodologies involved with the recoveries.

The two foci will be

  1. Theories, methods and practices in archeology.
  2. Knowledge of selected Classical monuments of Rome and Italy representing both outstanding remains and contextualization of the theories and methodologies discussed in the classroom.

Accordingly, half of the course will be done in the classroom, and the other half on the field. The monuments chosen will be those more relevant for the study of Classical archaeology in Rome.

One case-study will be the city of Pompeii that will help to contextualize techniques and concepts. This will facilitate and entail a discussion on the preservation and destruction of archaeological sites, a topic most relevant in this today’s world.

Learning outcomes

Students should be able to recognize and interpret selected sites and monuments of the Greco-Roman world. They should be able to demonstrate knowledge of methodologies and the technical vocabulary of classical archaeology.

By the end of the semester the students will have acquired knowledge, comprehension, and ability in the application and evaluation of the most important archaeological tools both in theory and on specific Roman sites.

The students will be able to recall and discuss the history, methodologies and techniques of modern archaeology, and to describe and justify their application in the appropriate context. They will also have acquired skills in the interpretation of the archaeological data.

The students will eventually possess an “archaeological framework” which will enable them to think as archaeologists, and to measure the complexities linked to the analysis of the past, making them able to evaluate the importance of archaeology in interpreting cultures, past and present.

This course will also supply knowledge and will help to develop the theoretical skills preparatory to an archaeological excavation/survey.



  1. Renfrew, C., & Bahn, P. G. (2008). Archaeology: Theories, methods and practice. London: Thames & Hudson. 5th Edition. ISBN 978-0-500-28713-2.
  2. Berry, J. (2007). The complete Pompeii. New York: Thames & Hudson. ISBN: 978-0-500-05150-4.
  3. Alcock, Susan E., and Robin Osborne, eds. 2012. Classical Archaeology. 2nd ed. Blackwell Studies in Global Archaeology 10. Wiley-Blackwell. ISBN 978-1-4443-3691-7

Required reserved readings

Other readings will be supplied during the semester: they will be available as photocopies, links to on-line articles or as files on Sakai.


This course will be using the virtual learning environment Sakai to post slides, weblinks, grades, etc. Students are asked to check the Sakai site on a regular basis and are responsible for assignments posted there.

Assessment methods




Readings, classroom participation and assignments.

Students are asked to complete the readings before coming to class. The students are expected to participate to class discussion and to express their problems, ideas and perplexities about the readings.

During the semester students will be asked to complete assignments (called “Mission”) based on the assigned readings.


Midterm exam

Date: see schedule.

The topics tested will be those of the first half of the semester.

It will be made up by two parts:

  • one testing the student’s factual knowledge (events, date, people etc) using identifications, multiple choices, true-false, etc.;
  • the other testing the student’s understanding and knowledge of the concepts explained in class using open questions, essays etc.

More specific details will be given during the semester.


Final exam

Date: TBA

The topics tested will be those of the second half of the semester only. The final exam is not cumulative.

The format will follow that of the midterm exam.

More specific details will be given during the semester.


One presentation

The presentation should last 15 minutes and provide a thorough assessment of the chosen topic (to be approved by the instructor, see below), at least four independent and scholarly sources should be consulted (e.g. books on reserve, Jstor, and the Muse project). Online resources are permitted, but must be approved by the instructor. The day of the presentation the student is expected to provide a detailed outline, drawings, maps or other pertinent visual material along with a list of references.

The presentation topic needs to be relevant to the field of Classical archaeology, and to be submitted to the instructor for approval by the end of week 04. Failure to submit a topic by this time will have you fail (zero grade) this portion of your grade. The provisional guidelines are as follow: A) the project needs to be relevant to the field of Classical archaeology, B) the project needs to be original (using the same project for more than one class is considered cheating), C) the project needs to be approved by the professor before a student starts working on it.


Written report.

Your presentation will become a written report (8-10 pages long) to be submitted by the end of week 13.

More details will be provided at the beginning of the semester.






Grading Scale

A = 95-100

A- = 92-94

B+ = 88-91

B = 84-87

B- = 80-83

C+ = 77-79

C = 73-76

C- = 70-72

D+ = 65-69

D = 60-64

F = 59 and below


Estimated entrance fee € 40 per student (museum entries).





Archaeology, museums, “who owns the past”, ISIS destruction of Religious monuments

Nature and aims (R&B pp.12-18).

History of archaeology I (R&B pp. 19-39),

What is Classical archaeology (Handouts: Alcock & Osborne)

Whose past I (R&B pp.545-577)

handout: AIA code of professional ethics)

Museums, Collectors Watch Case of Italy vs. Steinhardt. http://www.wsj.com/articles/SB907886231343825500Stainhard case

Euphronios (Sarpedon) Krater


Unesco convention 1970: http://www.unesco.org/new/en/culture/themes/illicit-trafficking-of-cultural-property/1970-convention/


01Visit: Capitoline Museums

Elizabeth Fentress, “Museum Review: Around the Temple: The New Galleries of the Capitoline Museum”, American Journal of Archaeology , Vol. 111, No. 2 (Apr., 2007), pp. 365-369.


What: Formation process

What is left? The variety of evidence (R&B pp. 51-72)

Mission 1


02 Visit: Ara Pacis



Where: excavations and surveys. Harris Matrix.

Discovering Archaeological sites and features (R&B pp. 73-95).

Assessing the layout of sites and features (R&B pp. 95-106).

Excavation and stratigraphy (R&B pp.107-120, 122-3, 136).

Harris, E., Principles of archaeological stratigraphy. http://www.harrismatrix.com/book/Practices_of_Archaeological_Stratigraphy.pdf.

Mission 2





03 Visit: Palazzo Valentini (Roman houses)

Kathrin Maurer, “Archeology as Spectacle: Heinrich Schliemann's Media of Excavation” German Studies Review Vol. 32, No. 2 (May 2009), pp. 303-317.


When: dating methods and chronology.

Relative dating (R&B pp. 121-132)

Absolute dating (R&B pp. 133-165)

Mission 3


04 visit: American Academy (archeological materials)



Pompeii (1 part)

What did they think I? (R&B pp. 391-428)

Joanne Berry The Complete Pompeii, p. TBA


05 visit: Jewish Catacombs or Cripta Balbi



Pompeii (2 part)

Joanne Berry The Complete Pompeii, p. TBA


Review and presentations.

Final review.

Those presentations that did not fit into the earlier weeks will be delivered today.


Final exam




Attendance is mandatory. Students are allowed 1 (one) unexcused absence. Any absence beyond that will result in a deduction of two percentage points from the final grade for each additional absence. Exams, presentations or other work missed without a documented medical or family emergency will result in a failing grade for that exam or assignment. More than 4 (four) absences (missing more than 30%) will have you fail the course.

Academic Honesty

In addition to the Loyola University Chicago Academic Integrity policy outlined at http://www.luc.edu/academics/catalog/undergrad/reg_academicintegrity.shtml , the following apply:

1)      Students may not use automated translators to write their compositions in Italian classes.

2)      Students may not ask friends, relatives or native speakers to complete their assignments.

3)      Students may not recycle their own or other people’s work.

4)      Students must explicitly cite any material that has been taken from the Internet or other sources.

Please note that any single instance of Academic Dishonesty will result in a grade of “0” on the assignment or exam in question. A pattern of failure to comply with these standards will result in a failing grade.


Students with documented disabilities who wish to discuss academic accommodations should contact me the first week of class, as well as the Academic Advisor.

Email Communication

I will do my best to reply to emails sent during business hours M-F within 2 days. Emails sent after 7 pm will be considered received the next business day. I may be able to answer emails on the weekends, but I cannot assure it.

Computer & Internet Use in the Classroom

Use of laptop computers and tablets during class time is permitted for note taking.

Use of the internet is not permitted unless specifically directed by the instructor. This includes checking of email, use of instant messages, facebook and the like.

Cell Phone Use

Cell phones use is not permitted during class time. This includes sending and reading of Text Messages. All cellphones brought into the class room must be set to silent.

In the case of a personal emergency, students should quietly exit the classroom.

Food & Drink

Drinks in sealable containers are permitted in the classroom.  Food is not to be eaten during class unless required for a medical condition.