What Makes a Society Great – The Roman Empire as Example
It is important to study the characteristics of a great society. Throughout history, there have been many societies that were great and many that were failures. In order to advance mankind and countries today, lessons can be learned from the past. There are many characteristics that are present in great societies. However, some of these qualities are more important than others. The three main characteristics that make a society great are a high quality of life, economic prosperity, and democracy. This essay explains why these three characteristics can make a society great and illustrates these qualities using the example of the Roman ...view middle of the document...
Another very important element of a great society is economic prosperity and growth. Mourdoukoutas and Stafanidis write that economic opportunity is one of the strongest factors that make a society great. Economic opportunity allows people to create wealth for themselves and for society. According to John Marangos in Alternative Perspectives of a Good Society, A country must be able to expand and grow in order to be great (95-96). If a country was stagnant or declining, it would not be a great society. People would struggle to survive and the country would lose power and the ability to properly support its population and economy. A strong economy can also help to enrich the human experience and the quality of life.
Roman Empire Example
The Roman Empire was able to become such a large and great society because of its power. According to History, “Beginning in the eighth century B.C., Ancient Rome grew from a small town on central Italy's Tiber River into an empire that at its peak encompassed most of continental Europe, Britain, much of western Asia, northern Africa and the Mediterranean islands.” The economy of Rome and the power of its military leadership allowed it to become one of the largest empires in the history of man.
According to Peter Temin in “The Economy of the Early Roman Empire,” the Romans built extensive temples, baths, roads, and aqueducts (133). “The Rome of 100 A.D. had better paved streets, sewage disposal, water supply, and fire protection than the capitals of civilized Europe in 1800” (Temin 133). The Romans were able to produce and build all of these wondrous facilities because they had a flourishing and prosperous economy. The prosperous economy was a result of both market institutions and a stable government (Temin 133).
In order for a society to be truly great, it must be democratic. People should be encouraged and have control of their society. Citizens should be able to vote on policies and politicians. According to Schutt, “The society would value citizen involvement and would try to inform, educate, and empower each person to be a full participant in societal decision-making. Everyone in society would be encouraged and...