State, Society, and Popular Leaders profiles the incorporation of the lower classes into the governing system of ancient Rome. In 287, the Hortensian law made the decisions of the plebs binding on the whole people. This event is often referred to as the great plebeian victory, a landmark in Roman history. In this original study, Rachel Feig Vishnia maintains that the real turning point in the relations between the plebs and the patricians can be found eighty years earlier. Based on the works of Livy and most recent scholarships, this book provides a new and controversial view of one of the most exciting periods in Roman history.