THE LOGIC OF PARTICIPATION
The next six chapters survey the structures, values, and functions of emperor worship in the province of Asia. The temporal boundaries for the discussion begin with the Augustan period (31 BCE–14 CE) and end in the early second century CE. I begin with provincial cults of the emperors, move to the municipal cults, and then consider evidence for groups or individuals who worshipped members of the imperial family. A final chapter describes imperial cult religion, using the categories of cosmogony, cosmology, human maturation, and eschatology.
This progression moves in the opposite direction to that used by Christian Habicht (1973) in his excellent article on the worship of the emperors in this same period. His study began with individuals, moved to municipal cults, examined provincial practices (east and west), and ended with considerations of the emperor's own understanding of his status in society and cult. I work in the opposite direction to highlight not the self-understanding of the emperor but rather the functions of imperial cults in the Roman province of Asia.