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Document Type:Latin Dissertation
Language of Document:English
Record Number:52792
Doc. No:TL22746
Call number:‭3208345‬
Main Entry:Scott John McDonough
Title & Author:Power by negotiation: Institutional reform in the fifth-century Sasanian EmpireScott John McDonough
College:University of California, Los Angeles
Date:2005
Degree:Ph.D.
student score:2005
Page No:326
Abstract:The period 200-700 CE, conventionally termed "late antiquity," was critical in the construction of the social and political institutions of the medieval Near East. Facing a variety of challenges to public order, both internal and external, the societies of the region created new, and highly successful mechanisms to guarantee their social, economic, and civic stability. Between 350-500 CE the late antique Sasanian kings of Iran disposed of, or altered irrevocably, much of the Hellenistic ideological and administrative framework of imperial rule in southwest Asia. Through trial and error, they established a centralized bureaucratic polity. In the process, the Sasanian kings forged lasting alliances with important ethno-linguistic, confessional and regional elites in their domains: the Magian (Zoroastrian) aristocracy and priesthood, and, significantly for the history of the Near East, the rabbis and bishops of the Jewish and Christian communities under their rule. In this manner, the Sasanian rulers cultivated institutions of minority rule over a landscape that would remain largely Christian and Jewish for the remainder of the first millennium. Their empire presents a fascinating model of a multicultural, multiethnic, multi-confessional ancient polity in operation, and serves as a vital point of comparison with the rather different paths taken by the late antique and medieval Roman/Byzantine Empire. Indeed, the Sasanian model stands in marked contrast to the efforts of Roman Emperors to deny power and legitimacy to non-Roman (eventually non-Christian) elites. The direct survival of the institutions and principles of Late Sasanian governance in the medieval Near East testifies to their enduring utility.
Subject:Social sciences; Fifth century; Institutional reform; Iran; Negotiation; Power; Sasanian Empire; Ancient civilizations; Middle Eastern history; Middle Ages; 0579:Ancient civilizations; 0333:Middle Eastern history; 0581:Middle Ages
Added Entry:M. G. R. Morony, Claudia
Added Entry:University of California, Los Angeles