For general instructions on and explanation of these weekly papers, click HERE.
The story of Lucretia at the end of Livy's History of Rome Book 1, which you will have read for this week, is presented as the crucial moment in 509 BC when Romans abandoned monarchy and created in its place the 'Republic' -- the synonym for which was Libertas or 'Freedom'. This form of government would last for several centuries, essentially until Caesar's assassination in 44 BC (the leader of Caesar's assassins, M. Iunius Brutus, was ironically a direct descendant of the Brutus who helped avenge Lucretia and the founded the Republic).
'Freedom' in Rome -- the establishment of Libertas -- is the ultimate consequence of the rape of Lucretia. Write a paper discussing the story of Lucretia, addressing one or more of the following points (you are not limited to these -- consider them merely suggestions): In what ways do you find -- or don't find -- this story a plausible cause for such a dramatic outcome? If you do not find it plausible -- or not entirely plausible -- what do you imagine would be a more satisfactory explanation? The Libertas that results is of course a sort of political freedom...but to what other 'freedoms' (or repression of freedom) does the story itself gesture (either intentionally on the part of Livy or not)? In what ways is Livy's Lucretia a satisfactory 'model' or 'example' (this is what she calls herself) for later Romans, and most especially women, with respect to the assertion of freedom? You might also consider how this story illustrates, or fails to illustrate, Patterson's explanation of freedom as a 'tripartite value' -- that is, is his 'chordal triad' evident in Livy's story?