Early Medieval Europe 300–1050: A Guide for Studying and Teaching, 2nd Edition (Paperback) book cover

Early Medieval Europe 300–1050

A Guide for Studying and Teaching, 2nd Edition

By David Rollason

Routledge

402 pages

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Description

Early Medieval Europe 300–1050: A Guide for Studying and Teaching empowers students by providing them with the conceptual and methodological tools to investigate the period. Throughout the book, major research questions and historiographical debates are identified and guidance is given on how to engage with and evaluate key documentary sources as well as artistic and archaeological evidence. The book’s aim is to engender confidence in creative and independent historical thought.

This second edition has been fully revised and expanded and now includes coverage of both Islamic and Byzantine history, surveying and critically examining the often radically different scholarly interpretations relating to them. Also new to this edition is an extensively updated and closely integrated companion website, which has been carefully designed to provide practical guidance to teachers and students, offering a wealth of reference materials and aids to mastering the period, and lighting the way for further exploration of written and non-written sources. 

Accessibly written and containing over 70 carefully selected maps and images, Early Medieval Europe 300–1050 is an essential resource for students studying this period for the first time, as well as an invaluable aid to university teachers devising and delivering courses and modules on the period.

Reviews

'This is a wholly original "textbook" that explodes the genre in an enormously fruitful way. By focusing on evidence and interpretations, rather than offering a summary of what we think we know, it opens up for students the excitement of history as a conversation, a puzzle, even a game. The Early Middle Ages is an ideal period for such an exercise, given the relative scarcity of sources and the vibrant state of contemporary scholarship in the field. This is a book that treats students with great respect and offers instructors opportunities for creative pedagogy. Anyone teaching the period should have it on the shelf.'

Adam J. Kosto, Columbia University, USA

'David Rollason’s Early Medieval Europe provides a clear and comprehensive introduction to the sources for early medieval history as well as the historiographical debates occupying scholars right now. This new edition incorporates a wealth of fresh material on Byzantium and the Muslim caliphate, while retaining its unique approach that takes students seriously as active participants in the learning process.'

Scott Bruce, University of Colorado Boulder, USA

Table of Contents

PART I: INTRODUCTION

Chapter 1 Why study this period?

Formative character

Challenges to study

This book's aims

Questions, models, and experiments

PART II: EMPIRE AND PEOPLES

Introduction

Chapter 2 From Roman Empire to barbarian kingdoms: cataclysm or transition?

The First Doom and Gloom Model

The Second Doom and Gloom Model

The Deliberate Roman Policy Model

Companion website resources

Research and study

Chapter 3 The dismemberment and survival of the Byzantine Empire

The First Doom and Gloom Model

The Second Doom and Gloom Model

The Deliberate Byzantine Policy Model

Companion website resources

Research and study

Chapter 4 The Arab conquests

Approach 1: Accepting validity of the written sources

Approach 2: Being sceptical of the sources

Approach 3: Reading back from the heyday of the Umayyad and ‘Abbasid caliphates

Companion website resources

Research and study

Chapter 5 The making of peoples

The Biological Model

The Constitutional Model

Why did peoples form?

Companion website resources

Research and study

Conclusion

Timeline: Part II

PART III: POWER AND SOCIETY

Introduction

Chapter 6 Pagan, Roman, and Christian beliefs about Rulers: ideological power

Paganism and rulership

Roman ideology and kingship

Christianity and rulership

Companion website resources

Research and study

Chapter 7 Edicts, taxes, and armies: bureaucratic power

Written documents

Oral communication, symbolism, and ritual

Government departments and staff

Capabilities of governments

Companion website resources

Research and study

Chapter 8 Kings, warriors, and women: personal power

War-bands

Feasting, drinking, and the hall

The social pyramid

Aristocratic elites

The role of women

Nearness to the king

Companion website resources

Research and study

Conclusion

Timeline: Part III

PART IV: THE ECONOMIC FOUNDATION

Introduction

Chapter 9 Trade as a driving force?

Pirenne and his critics

The nature of the Roman and Byzantine economies

The economic influence of the Arab caliphate

Decline and revival of trade?

Companion website resources

Research and study

Chapter 10 Cultivating the land: the basis of European society?

The continuity of Roman agriculture

An agricultural revolution?

Companion website resources

Research and study

Chapter 11 Towns and cities: the functions of urban life

The fate of Roman cities

Functions of cities and towns

Growth of cities and towns

New towns

Cities and towns as tools of power

Companion website resources

Research and study

Conclusion

Timeline: Part IV

PART V: THE CHURCH’S TRIUMPH

Introduction

Chapter 12 Conversion to Christianity

The Roman Empire

The barbarians within the Roman Empire

Conversion outside the former Roman Empire

Companion website resources

Research and study

Chapter 13 The success of monasticism

‘Bottom-up’ model

‘Top-down’ model

Companion website resources

Research and study

Chapter 14 The power of bishops and popes

Bishops and popes in the Church hierarchy

The resources of popes and bishops

Bishops and popes in the world

Companion website resources

Research and study

Conclusion

Timeline: Part V

General Conclusion

Sources

References

Image Credits

About the Author

David Rollason is Emeritus Professor of History at Durham University, UK. His previous publications include Northumbria 500–1100: Creation and Destruction of a Kingdom (2003) and The Power of Place: Rulers and Their Palaces, Landscapes, Cities, and Holy Places (2016). His research has included the cult of saints in Anglo-Saxon England, twelfth-century historical writing, the extensive medieval list of names known as the Durham Liber Vitae, and most recently royal and imperial sites across Europe

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
HIS000000
HISTORY / General
HIS010000
HISTORY / Europe / General
HIS037010
HISTORY / Medieval