World Cultures Discussions
World cultures and historical events are unique, and have a strong relevance to different periods of human life. Late antiquity with its huge cultural heritage can be seen in many modern cultures. In this paper we will discuss how legacy of the Roman Empire is found in contemporary life in the United States and what particular principles of Roman philosophy are reflected in the modern Western worldview. Also, we will answer the question, how does the art of Ravenna reflects Augustine`s views of Christianity found in Confessions and The City of God.
Talking about cultural values, the focus on the language should be made first. In Roman Empire, as well, as in other European countries, Latin was the lingua franca. It was used in all spheres of life, till Middle Ages, when it became an official Catholic language. As a comparison, we can take contemporary American English language. Being a lingua franca nowadays, it is widely used outside United States and the whole Europe. Moreover, modern English uses Latin script which was used as a derivation from Greek Alphabet in Roman period. Philosophy of the Rome is also quite relevant to modern worldview of Western people. Such spheres of life as law, politics and the way of thinking have much in common for Romans and Americans. For example, materialism, defined by Epicurus, is the way of life for most of the Americans (Mitra, 2007).
Taking into an account the arts of the Rome, we need to mention popular work by St. Augustine "City of Good" that was written just after the fall of the Ravenna. "It was designed to reassure the morale of Mediterranean Christianity, shaken by this visitation of the wrath of Good" (Cristo, 1975). The catastrophe of Ravenna, as a political center, the main focus of the Latin Church was described in the book written by Augustine.
To sum up, we can say, that Roman period was one of the most interesting and advanced historical periods, with a huge cultural background, which still influences the modern Western World.