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Rome, Italy

The Art of Sacred Space

Global Temple Conference

Course Number: 
Semester(s) Offered: 
Summer 2023
Credit Hours: 

Where do people go to communicate with the divine? Explore with us where and how people of the many different cultures of the Greco-Roman world communicated with their gods. Why are graves and groves considered sacred space? When is a painting or sculpture considered sacred? Whom do the gods allow to enter a sacred building? Can a song be a prayer or a curse? How can dance sway the gods? Why do gods love processions and the smell of burning animals? The journey through sacred space in Greco-Roman antiquity will engage your senses and your intellect, and will reveal a mindset both ancient and new. 

What is the value of taking this course in Rome?

"Sacred Space in Rome" offers students a unique and exciting opportunity to study Sacred Space in the vibrant and multi-layered city of Rome itself. The city is your classroom: you will visit remains of ancient temples, tombs, and dark caracombs, as well as looming basilicas (some even built by the first Christian emperor, Constantine) and ornate cathedrals. The majority of class time is spent on site, not in a classroom; walking shoes and a sturdy notebook are necessities! From the ancient "Sacred Way" winding its way through the Roman Forum to the catacombs where Christians and Jews buried their families, to the great late antique basilicas that dot the Roman city, there can be no better place to study what it means to be "sacred" than in the Eternal City of Rome.

Special Notes: 

This course fulfills the Arts (GA) requirement for Temple students under GenEd and Arts (AR) for Temple students under Core. Students cannot receive credit for this course if they have successfully completed Art History 0803, Greek and Roman Classics 0803, or Greek and Roman Classics 0903. 


In Rome, this course is cross-listed with GRC 803 and ARTH 803.