Slave Narratives on the Big Screen

We have, in the last decade, witnessed a rapid increase in cinematic slave narratives and some academics would say that this can be seen as a recurring social phenomenon. Furthermore, it could be claimed that cinematic slave narratives can be seen as a modern reflection of the anti-slavery movements of the 19th century and the African American Civil Rights Movement of the 20th century (Schroeter, 2016). But what is a cinematic slave narrative? Since there is no apparent academic work written on the subject, is it then possible to produce a specific definition and what are the reasons for this growing popularity? These are the main questions of this essay, which will be discussed through a close study of contemporary thoughts on the cinematic works: Django: Unchained (2013), The Birth of a Nation (2016) and Twelve Years a Slave (2013).

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Diocletian and the Division of East and West

The Roman Empire had grown too large and the west seemed to be more of a poor burden rather than the central and rich core of the empire as it used to be. The eastern part of the Empire was booming with trade and wealth and at the end of the second century A.D. Emperor Diocletian chose to divide the Roman Empire into the Western and Eastern Roman empire, but what were the real causes for this great divide and what became the consequences?

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Constantine the Great and the birth of modern-day Christianity

Most Europeans know the name of the former Roman capital Constantinople. The city was named after one of the most significant emperors of all time, Flavius Valerius Aurelius Constantius Augustus, or as he is more commonly known: Constantine the Great.
The question that is being raised is then: why was the age of Constantine the Great such an important turning point in the history of the Roman Empire?

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The Fall of the Western Roman Empire

In this essay, I am going to discuss what caused the collapse of the Western Roman Empire in the fifth century. The answer to this question differentiates amongst many historians as they disagree on both why the Western Empire fell and when, but I will define a series of different contributors, that might not have caused the downfall on their own, but together proved to be catastrophic.

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The Idea of Imitating Antiquity During the Renaissance

In this essay, I will first define two different variations of imitation through a close study of two letters by Angelo Poliziano and Paolo Cortesi in the mid-1480s. In the light of these definitions, I will explain Petrarch’s idea of imitating antiquity by taking a look at his speech from his self-coronation in 1341. Furthermore, I will explain the idea of using imitation to influence politician Cola di Rienzo during his revolution in 1347. Finally, I will end my essay by summarizing my findings in order to answer the question of what was meant by the idea of imitating antiquity during the Renaissance.

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Features of the Slave Narrative Genre

“There’s a sin, a fearful sin, resting on this nation, that will not go unpunished forever.” (Northup, 2014:115).

With the conception of the slave narrative genre in the 18th century, some escaped African-American slaves found a way to expose the cruelty of their mistreatment to the world through descriptive auto- biographies. I will, in this essay define and analyse a series of the genre’s major characteristics through a close study of Solomon Northup’s Twelve Years a Slave (2014), James Olney’s chapter “I Was Born”: Slave Narratives, Their Status as Autobiography and as Literature in Charles T. Davis and Henry Louis Gates’ The Slave’s Narrative (1985) and Audrey Fish’s The Cambridge Companion to the African American Slave Narrative (2007).

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Christianity and the Perception of Witches in the 15th century

In this essay, I am going to discuss how witches were thought to be a part of a sect who worshipped the devil and waged a secret war against the Christian Church. In this account, I will through the close study of two excerpts, be discussing how the literary works Formicarius and Malleus Maleficarum affected the development of Christian theologian’s perception of witches, or malefici (latin translation), during the 15th century.