History ETDs

Publication Date

8-27-2012

Abstract

Over the course of the fifth to ninth centuries, the Roman Empire gave way in western Europe to several kingdoms initially founded by so-called 'barbarian' tribes. This thesis is a thematic assessment of the evolutionary trends that shaped this period. It respects and integrates the highly interconnected nature of these themes (politics and social structures, for instance). It is driven by a desire for synthesis, and in particular a desire to reconcile the economic arguments of Chris Wickham and Walter Goffart with the more political histories of Peter Heather and Guy Halsall. The institutions that define the early medieval era--localized, more feudal societies, power systems, and economies--will be seen to be the direct outcome of trends begun under the Empire. In fact, these trends began with the Romans' method for accommodating the arrival of the barbarian peoples in the fifth century.

Level of Degree

Masters

Degree Name

History

Department Name

History

First Advisor

Graham, Timothy

First Committee Member (Chair)

Ryan, Michael

Second Committee Member

Smith, Jason

Third Committee Member

None

Language

English

Document Type

Thesis

Included in

History Commons

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