The Roman Empire has fallen. It was in all the papers. Very sadly, we lack a speaker, as Ken cannot participate in the group anymore at Filter. He was banned from Filter by the owner, Steve, after he and Ken got into an argument last week. See the my post below (or here) for details and what we might do about this. .
Since Ken was our expert on this historical period specifically, we need to scramble. If you know anyone who knows something about this topic, please ask them to come, and then let me know. (Jim Z — how are you on this stuff?) If we don’t really know enough as a group to have a long conversation, then we could either:
- Talk about the whole “Are-We-Rome” idea; i.e., are America’s best days behind us and why do empires decline anyway?; or
- Switch by 8pm to some of the juicy current events in the news, like the BP oil spill, financial reform that just passed the Senate, Wiley E. Rand Paul, Genius, etc.
Here are a few links on the vast topic of the fall of Rome:
- Ken’s blog on he and a friend reading Gibbon.
- A short, good 7-page history of Rome, beginning to end. (Don’t be confused by the awkward page layout of this site. The 7 pages are available to be clicked on in the upper left-hand column, just not at the bottom of the page like on most websites.)
- An interview with the author of a 2007 book called, Are We Rome?
- A lengthy semi-rebuttal by one of my favorite journalists.