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Derek McComb

Compare and Contrast Essay of Rome and Han China


There were many early civilizations throughout the world. Many of these were technically and politically inclined. Two of the most prominent out of these societies were the Romans and the Han Chinese. Both of these civilizations were advanced and were considered to be military powerhouses in their region. However, we can compare these two societies socially through gender relations and social classes, politically through method of control and war, and economically through labor systems and gender and slaves. Both the Romans and the Chinese were considered advanced socially. Both societies were similar each one of them was slightly different. One way that we can see these differences is through gender relations. In the Han dynasty many women were farmers on their husbands property. Another thing that some women did was make silk. They did this because they could use the money to pay off taxes and give women a measure of value. In the Roman society women were more equal with masculine counterparts. Thy sill had some restrictions, such as that they couldnt own property. However women could strive to become a priestess if they desired. However, Spartan women enjoyed even higher class than he women of the other poles. Another way to compare the two societies is through their social classes. In both societies social classes did not exist. That being said, women had less power in both societies and the Romans also had slaves that worked for them. Another way that we can compare the two societies is politically. One way that we can do this is through how both civilizations controlled the people. In Han China the people were controlled by a central government with an emperor at the head. Another way they controlled

Derek McComb

the people were with legalist policies. The Romans were originally an republic but were turned into an empire when Julius Caeser took over control and named himself dictator for life. However before this the Romans had elected representatives and a constitution. Another way to compare the two societies is through war. In Han China, the armies invaded and colonized northern Vietnam and Korea. They also invaded the Xiongnu/Hun territory. The Romans had a large army that was ready for whatever they were told to do. The Romans also had a navy in he Mediterranean that helped keep the area mostly clear from pirates. The last way to compare the two societies is economically through labor systems and gender and slaves. In Han China the citizens of the region were required to do a certain amount of corvee labor (labor tax) per year to help build roads and canals. In Rome, men were usually the people with specialized labor skills, the women did many home duties, and slaves did the rest of the work. In Han China women were highly important to the culture as they did many things on a daily basis. However in Rome slaves were the main source of untrained labor that provided import things such as food production. Both Han China and Rome were similar yet had differences that made them different from each other. Both had powerful armies and powerful rulers that controlled the land. However Rome had slaves while the Chinese did not rely on that type of labor. Both were powerful civilizations for their time and that is what made them successful in their age.