Violent transmissions: transmissions of violence

The 'violent transmissions' resource pack enriches the teaching of language, history and culture, by exploring the role that violence plays in communication.

How does violence transcend time? How do ancient objects transmit a violent message to viewers today?

These resources are designed to enrich the teaching of KS5 Classical subjects and English, or any groups studying language, history and culture. They were created by students in Classics and Ancient History at Bristol, during a month-long digital education project entitled ‘Violent Transmissions'. Students explored the role of violence in communication, especially in making connections between the past and today. 

The resource pack (downloadable below) provides you with four ancient and modern case studies, plus key facts and commentary, and questions for your pupils to discuss - in class, during a lunch club, or with your tutor group. Read on for a taster of each case study. 

Resource packs

Download the Violent transmissions teaching materials as a Powerpoint presentation or a PDF:

Violent transmissions resources (PDF, 1,341kB)

Violent transmissions resources (Office document, 4,631kB)

Curse tablet Find out more

To find out more about the Violent Transmissions project, including how to use these resources, contact Dr Hannah-Marie Chidwick or Dr Pantelis Michelakis

Gem Gemma Augustea

This gem (1st century CE) depicts Augustus raising a tropaion on a battlefield. It was intended to be a reminder of the constant threat Rome posed to its colonised populations. 

Q. What are the implications for Augustus presenting himself in this way?

Created by Ciaran Jones and Millie Leadbeater

Di Canio Tattoo Violent tattoos

Paolo di Canio is a former well-known football player as well as a declared fascist. He has several tattoos including the Latin word "DVX" on his right biceps. 

Q. How does the medium used by di Canio affect his message? 

Created by Simona Thompson

Tweet Political Speech

Just as the Rostra was a platform for political speech in ancient Rome, Twitter is a virtual platform allowing for unidirectional communication that can turn violent. 

Q. Is the transmission of violence more effective verbally rather than written?

Created by Maddie Barclay and Sophie Kefford

Roman curse tablet Curse tablets

Curse Tablets communicate a grievance, they curse an individual. Can we read Twitter as the 'modern day curse tablet'? 

Q. Why are we so willing to be violent when we know that no one can see/hear us?

Created by Kitty Cox and Allie Yamansavascilar. 

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