With the collapse of the Roman Empire in 476 AD, western civilization (Europe) transitioned into what historians call the Middle Ages. This time period, also called Medieval times, ended in approximately 1500. ??The study of the Middle Ages (sometimes called the Dark Age) offers the opportunity to learn about early development of government, society and culture in Europe. Important essential questions come to mind as we look at this time period:

  • What do governments do? What does government provide that we cannot do ourselves?
  • Why live together? What holds us together?
  • The “Dark Ages”… really that dark?
  • Why fight?
Making a connection to today, the mayor of our city is in negotiations to become a sister city with the European city of Bruges in Belgium. Traveling to Bruges takes one back in time to the Middle Ages as much of its architecture has been preserved. The mayor needs background knowledge on the Middle Ages as she works to close the deal by better understanding the history of Bruges. She has hired your ESPRAT+G trained teams made up of economists, anthropologists, political scientists, historians and art historians to provide background information and to help her prepare a special greeting when the mayor of Bruges and her team arrives to negotiate.
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