Chr. Laes (ed.), Disability in Antiquity, London and New York, Routledge, 2017.
This volume is a major contribution to the field of disability history in the ancient world. Contributions from leading international scholars examine deformity and disability from a variety of historical, sociological and theoretical perspectives, as represented in various media. The volume is not confined to a narrow view of ‘antiquity’ but includes a large number of pieces on ancient western Asia that provide a broad and comparative view of the topic and enable scholars to see this important topic in the round. "The volume serves as a fitting starting point for a new era in disability history focussing on the ancient Mediterranean." (Jane Draycott)
Chr. Laes, V. Vuolanto (eds.), Children and Everyday Life in the Roman and Late Antique World, London and New York, Routledge, 2017.
The topics discussed in this volume include children's living environments; clothing; childhood care; social relations; leisure and play; health and disability; upbringing and schooling; and children's experiences of death. While the main focus of the volume is on Late Antiquity its coverage begins with the early Roman Empire, and extends to the early ninth century CE. The result is the first book-length scrutiny of the agency and experience of pre-modern children. "On account of its impressive thematic breadth, the high-level quality of its contributions throughout, and its deep, critical engagement with issues of method and theory, Children and Everyday Life in the Roman and Late Antique World should be required reading for anyone interested in the history of childhood." (Sinclair Bell)
Chr. Laes, K. Mustakallio, Ville Vuolanto (eds.), Children and Family in Late Antiquity. Life, Death and Interaction, Leuven, Peeters, 2015. This volume concentrates on three interlinked aspects of family life and interaction: liminal situations regarding demography and ecological factors that lay down the framework for family life; liminal conditions on the edges of familial life regarding child labour, child slaves and sexual attitudes towards children; and local traditions which confront us with people and cultures at the borders of the Roman Empire. It continues the series of five previous Roman Family conferences, but focuses especially on Late Antiquity.
Beperkt? Gehandicapten in het Romeinse rijk, Leuven, Davidsfonds, 2014. This is the first monograph ever to treat disabilities in the Roman Empire. After a methodological introduction and a chapter on the 'crucial' first days after birth, the book treats disabilities from head to toe: mental problems, blindnes, deafness and muteness, speech impairment and mobility problems. Ninety pages of footnotes, indices and bibliography make the volume an invaluable research tool, also for those who are less acquainted with Dutch. It was awarded the Homerusprijs 2015 of the NKV (Nederlands Klassiek Verbond), for the best book in classics bridging the present and the ancient world.
Christian Laes, Johan Strubbe, Youth in the Roman Empire. The Young and the Restless Years?, Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, 2014.
Modern society has a negative view of youth as a period of storm and stress, but at the same time cherishes the idea of eternal youth. How does this compare with ancient Roman society? Did a phase of youth exist there with its own characteristics? How was youth appreciated? This book studies the lives and the image of youngsters (around 15-25 years of age) in the Latin West and the Greek East in the Roman period. Boys and girls of all social classes come to the fore; their lives, public and private, are sketched with the help of a range of textual and documentary sources, while the authors also employ the results of recent neuropsychological research. The result is a highly readable and wide-ranging account of how the crucial transition between childhood and adulthood operated in the Roman world.