Chapter 13. Gender and the Fall of Rome

  1. Philip Rousseau
  1. Kate Cooper Senior Lecturer Director

Published Online: 9 MAR 2009

DOI: 10.1002/9781444306101.ch13

A Companion to Late Antiquity

A Companion to Late Antiquity

How to Cite

Cooper, K. (2009) Gender and the Fall of Rome, in A Companion to Late Antiquity (ed P. Rousseau), Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford, UK. doi: 10.1002/9781444306101.ch13

Editor Information

  1. Andrew W. Mellon Professor of Early Christian Studies, The Catholic University of America, USA

Author Information

  1. University of Manchester, UK

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 9 MAR 2009
  2. Published Print: 30 JAN 2009

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9781405119801

Online ISBN: 9781444306101



  • gender and the fall of Rome;
  • gender and “Decline and Fall”;
  • role of household in articulation of empire;
  • Christianity and distinctive new rhetoric of masculinity;
  • relative ranking of male ascetics and male householders;
  • Christian tradition of tension - between biological family and “family” of faith;
  • decline of Roman law - a minus for women


This chapter contains sections titled:

  • Gender and the “Decline and Fall”

  • Gender and Family from the Early Christian period to the Fifth and Sixth Centuries

  • Did Women Have a “Decline and Fall”?

  • Conclusion

  • Bibliographical Note