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View Diary: Shrinking Middle Class - Return to Agrarian Class Structure? (80 comments)

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  •  Serfdom was started in the last century of the (5+ / 0-)

    Roman empire when peasants were legally bound to the land in an effort to boost agricultural productivity. The old system of importing goods from the periphery such as
    Egypt, North Africa and Gaul was reduced by barbarian
    invasions. At the same time continuous war, both civil
    and barbarian, impoverished society. The system of imperial succession failed to provide continuity in the face of a military tradition of mutiny. Finally a fundamentally anti-Roman Christianity undermined traditional Roman values such as ancestor worship and reinforced an Oriental cultural viewpoint.

    'Instead of inquiring why the Roman empire was destroyed we should rather be surprised that it lasted so long.-Edward Gibbon'

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