Primarily for Undergraduates
ARCH 0100 (Formerly AE10) Field Archaeology in the Ancient World [Register] [Course Website]
Always wanted to be Indiana Jones? This course, focusing on the Mediterranean world and its neighbors in antiquity, interprets field archaeology in its broadest sense. In addition to exploring “how to do” archaeology – the techniques of locating, retrieving and analyzing ancient remains – we will consider how the nature of these methodologies affects our understanding of the past. MWF 11:00-11:50. Instructor: Susan E. Alcock
New! ARCH 0160 Buried History, Hidden Wonders: Discovering East Asian Archaeology [Register] [Course Website]
What do Peking Man, human sacrifice, buried armies, lost cities, silk routes and treasure fleets have to do with one another? All are part of the rich and varied legacy of East Asian archaeology, which is today being re-written by spectacular new discoveries little known in the West. Beginning with Asia’s earliest hominid inhabitants, this course will explore the emergence of agriculture, early cities, empires, and world trade, in a colorful palimpsest of archaeological discovery. MWF 2:00-2:50. Instructor: Rod Campbell
ARCH 0201 Sport in the Ancient Greek World [Register] [Course Website]
Interested students must register for CLAS 0210O.
Athletics and sports were as popular and significant in the ancient Greek world as they are today, and so offer an excellent introduction to its archaeology and history. This class will discuss the development of Greek athletics, the nature of individual events, the social implications of athletic professionalism, women and athletics, and the role of sport in Greek education. MWF 12:00-12:50. Instructor: John F. Cherry
New! ARCH 0330 Archaeology Under the Volcano [Register] [Course Website]
The volcano has come to represent a modern western conception of wild nature -- unpredictable and dangerous, ‘red in tooth and claw’ -- in authors from Byron to Freud, Derrida to Dickens. Archaeologists have brought similar attitudes to the study of volcanic eruptions such as Vesuvius and Thera in the Mediterranean world, and Xitle and Popocatepetal in Mexico. This course will begin with these literary and archaeological interpretations of volcanoes, then explore other non-western and indigenous perspectives. Our deeply embedded assumption of a sharp divide between ‘nature’ and ‘culture’ will be explored and questioned. MWF 2:00-2:50. Instructor: Karen Holmberg
New! ARCH 0440 Archaeologies of the Ancient "Middle East" [Register] [Course Website]
What were Neanderthals really like? Why stop hunting and start farming? This course will explore these and other questions through an examination of the earliest archaeologies of the Middle East. Topics will include the evidence for the first hominids and humans in the region, the nature of hunter-gatherer existence, the origins of cultivation and pastoralism, and the rise of social inequality. MWF 10:00-10:50. Instructor: Morag Kersel
ARCH 0451 Jewish Art and Architecture from Antiquity to Modernity [Register]
Interested students must register for JUDS 0080.
This course is divided thematically and chronologically, and overviews ancient, medieval and modern through contemporary times. The last sessions will be devoted to the Jewish lifecycle. Artifacts and monuments will be examined from a stylistic, esthetic and visual point of view. They will be placed into their historical context and evaluated critically from a social, religious and if applicable political point of view.
ARCH 0522 Roman Art and Architecture: Spectacles and Entertainment (HIAA 0320) [Register]
Interested students must register for HIAA 0320.
Spectacles offered the Romans innumerable opportunities for self-definition, on the individual level, the community level, and even the imperial level. Topics will include the amphitheater and the circus, representations of gladiators and charioteers, the architecture of propaganda and theater, and the triumph of victorious individuals as well as its opposite, the literal defacement of imperial portraits. Domestic spectacles will also be considered, including pleasure boats and vacation homes, dining rooms, gardens and sculpture collections. TTh 10:30-11:50 Instructor: Rebecca Molholt
ARCH 666 Cult Archaeology: Fantastic Frauds and Meaningful Myths of the Past [Register] [Course Website]
The pyramids and Stonehenge built by aliens? The power of the Mummy’s Curse? These myths couldn’t be true… or could they? Cult Archaeology examines popular and fantastic interpretations of archaeological remains presented in the press and popular media. This course finds the logical flaws in pseudoscientific explanations and the biases that underlie them. Discover the “truth” about archaeology! MWF 1:00-1:50. Instructor: Michelle Berenfeld
For Undergraduates and Graduates
New! ARCH 1050 Old World and New World Perspectives in Archaeology [Register] [Course Website]
This course examines how archaeologists working on different sides of the world study the past. Archaeology in the Old World and New World has developed on parallel, but separate trajectories. While these approaches share methods and theories, they often interpret archaeological data in alternative or even contradictory ways. In this course we will view archaeological topics from both perspectives, using examples from the Mediterranean and Mesoamerica, to try to better understand, and perhaps bridge the gap between some of our differences. Prerequisite: An introductory course in archaeology, either through the Joukowksy Institute or the Anthropology Department. Th 4:00-6:20. Instructors: John F. Cherry and Thomas Garrison
ARCH 1201 Mosaics (HIAA 1200C) [Register]
Interested students must register for HIAA 1200C.
Floor mosaics are one of the most common forms of Roman art; they survive--often still in context--in all corners of the Roman world. This seminar investigates various aspects of mosaics from the 1st century BCE to the 6th century C.E., including iconography, style, symbolism, and technique. We will consider how floor mosaics inflect narratives for specific contexts, and transform the very reality of spaces that they simultaneously define. Th 4:00-6:20. Instructor: Rebecca Molholt
ARCH 1250 Minoans and Myceneans: Greece in the Bronze Age
ARCH 1606 Imagining the Gods: Myths and Myth-making in Ancient Mesopotamia (AWAS 1100) [Register]
Interested students must register for AWAS 1100 S01.
Creation, the Flood, the Tower of Babel--well-known myths such as these have their origins in ancient Mesopotamia, the land between the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers. Using both ancient texts in translatioin and archaeology, this course will explore categories of Mesopotamian culture labeled "myth" and "religion" (roughly 3300-300 BCE), critically examining the ancient evidence as well as various modern interpretations. Topics will include myths of creation and the flood, prophecy and divination, death and the afterlife, ritual, kingship, combat myths and apocalypses, the nature and expression of ancient religious experience, and representations of the divine. Th 4:00-6:20 pm. Instructor: Matthew Rutz
ARCH 1621 History of Egypt I [Register] [Course Website]
Interested students must register for AWAS 1430.
A survey of the history and society of ancient Egypt from prehistoric times to the end of the Eighteenth Dynasty (ca. 5000-1300 BC). Readings include translations from the original documents that serve as primary sources for the reconstruction of ancient Egyptian history. MWF 12:00-12:50. Instructor: Laurel Bestock
ARCH 1630 Fighting Pharaohs: Ancient Egyptian Warfare [Register] [Course Website]
When and why did the ancient Egyptians engage in war? Who was fighting? What were their weapons like and what were their military strategies? What were the political situations that caused them to go to war? How did warfare impact Egyptian society? In studying Egyptian history and society through the pervasive motif of war, we will gain an understanding of the forces that shaped Egyptian culture. TTh 1:00-2:20. Instructor: Laurel Bestock
ARCH 1810 Under the Tower of Babel: Archaeology, Politics, and Identity in the Modern Middle East [Register] [Course Website]
Present-day political ideologies profoundly impact our understanding of the past. Here we will explore the use and abuse of archaeological pasts in the modern nation states of the Middle East. What do pharaohs mean to modern Egyptians? Why did Saddam Hussein consider himself the last Babylonian king? This course will explore the role of imagined ancient pasts and cultural heritage in the making of collective identities and state ideologies. TTh 10:30-11:50. Instructor: Omur Harmansah
ARCH 1820 The Location of Theory in Archaeology [Register]
Does archaeology matter to the world today? Can it accommodate divergent voices and agendas for the study of the past, the theorizing of material culture, and the production of cultural heritage? This course will explore recent trends in archaeology that engage the work of social theorists, political thinkers, activists, and artists in the critical analysis of society, past and present. The course runs in conjunction with the upcoming Theoretical Archaeology Group (TAG) conference to be held at Brown. TTh 2:30-3:50. Instructor: Ian Straughn
ARCH 1860 Engineering Material Culture: An Introduction to Archaeological Science [Register] [Course Website]
Unlikely bedfellows? No way! This course demonstrates how well archaeology (the humanities) and engineering (the hard sciences) can do business together. An introduction to the world of archaeological science, presented from the dual perspectives of material culture studies and materials science. Students will be introduced to a range of methodologies, instrumentation, and interpretive approaches through a combination of hands-on laboratory work, guest lectures, and interdisciplinary group research. Students must have already completed at least two university courses in archaeology, engineering, or any related discipline. Enrollment is limited to 20. Priority will be given to admitting a proportional number of students from archaeology, engineering and related fields. MWF 1:00-1:50. Instructor: Krysta Ryzewski, with Brian Sheldon
ARCH 1904A Memories, Memorials, Collections and Commemorations (AMCV 1904A) [Register]
Interested students must register for AMCV 1904A.
To understand how American culture thinks about the past, we will explore a range of texts including museum exhibits, historical society collections, memorials, and civic celebrations. These sites and objects, the material culture of memory, help us understand the construction of national, community and personal identity. Students will also undertake practical projects in memorialization and commemoration, among them designing the program for a new memorial to the Rhode Island slave trade. Th 3:00-5:20. Instructor: Steven Lubar
Primarily for Graduates
ARCH 2010C Architecture, Body, and Performance in the Ancient Near Eastern World [Register] [Course Website]
This seminar investigates the relationship between bodily practices, social performances, and production of space, using case studies drawn from ancient Mesopotamia, Anatolia, and Syria. Employing contemporary critical theories on the body, materiality, and social practices, new theories of the making of architectural spaces and landscapes will be explored with respect to multiple geographical, historical contexts in the Ancient Near East. M 3:00-5:20. Instructor: Omur Harmansah
ARCH 2040G Designing Heritages: From Archaeological Sensibilites to Relational Heritages (AMCV 2654) [Register] [Course Website]
Interested students must register for AMCV 2654.
Do you believe in the past? This course takes as its starting assumption that pasts are not temporally distant from today. They are contemporary experiences whose structure and mediation impact how we live in our shared world. This course will explore the intellectual history of archaeological thought and the development of heritage theory. While simultaneously exploring practical design skills, it will provide context to contemporary synergies between art, archaeology and heritage studies through interdisciplinary studies of architecture, art history, cultural criticism, heritage studies and archaeological theory. Th 10:00-12:20. Instructor: Ian Russell
ARCH 2041 Mesoamerican Archaeology and Ethnohistory [Register]
Interested students must register for ANTH 2520.
Seminar focusing on current issues in the archaeology and history of Mesoamerica, including Mexico and Northern Central America. Draws on rich resources at Brown, including the John Carter Brown Library. M 3:00-5:20. Instructors: Stephen Houston and Paja L. Faudree
ARCH 2330 Roman Asia Minor: The Empire Goes East [Register]
If one is curious about the dynamics of life within the Roman empire, the province of Asia makes an excellent case study. Its numerous urban centers and rural landscapes were socially and economically differentiated and frequently monumentally elaborated, as an increasing amount of varied archaeological data reveal. Asia offers a rich laboratory for exploring issues of provincial development, and ultimately decline, over the course of the empire. T 4:00-6:20. Instructor: Michelle Berenfeld
ARCH 2501C GIS and Remote Sensing in Archaeology (ANTH 2500C) [Register]
Interested students must register for ANTH 2500C.
This course will train advanced students in the laboratory methods needed for the successful application of GIS and remote sensing technologies in archaeology. We will conduct an exhaustive literature review of spatial research in archaeology to place GIS and remote sensing within a broader conceptual framework. Each student will design their own geodatabase that they will be able to build upon in future research. T 4:00-6:20. Instructor: Thomas Garrison
ARCH 2852 Skills Training in Material Culture Studies II [Register]
When dealing with material culture, one must possess a solid foundation in a range of skills. How does one document and analyze artifacts, architecture and landscapes, what are the appropriate techniques? How should all this information be securely stored and promulgated? This "hands-on" class, intended for students in multiple disciplines, will revolve around techniques of documentation and analysis (e.g. architectural drawing, GIS [Geographic Information Systems], data bases and digital media). F 3:00-5:20. Instructor: Susan E. Alcock
Primarily for Undergraduates
ARCH 150 Introduction to Egyptian Archaeology and Art [Register] [Course Website]
An introductory survey of the archaeology, art and architecture of ancient Egypt, ranging in time from the prehistoric cultures of the Nile Valley through the period of Roman control. While the course will examine famous monuments and characters of ancient Egypt (pyramids, mummies, King Tut!), it will also provide a wide-ranging review of the archaeology of this remarkable land. MWF 2:00-2:50. Instructor: Laurel Bestock
ARCH 0270 Troy Rocks! Archaeology of an Epic [Register] [Course Website]
What do Brad Pitt, Julius Caesar, Dante, Alexander the Great, and countless sports teams have in common? The Trojan War! This course will explore the Trojan War not only through the archaeology, art, and mythology of the Greeks and Romans but also through the popular imaginings of cultures ever since, to figure out what "really" happened when Helen ran off and Achilles got angry and the Greeks came bearing gifts. This is a first-year seminar. Other students may register with the permission of the instructor, which will be given after the first day of class. TTh 9:00-10:20. Instructor: Michelle Berenfeld
ARCH 0300 13 Things [Register] [Course Website]
The course will explore a range of approaches -- material culture studies, science studies, design studies, consumption studies, the sociology of technology, archaeology, phenomenology -- in dealing with 13 things: the wheel, a Neolithic Megalith, an Ancient Greek perfume jar, the castle of Acrocorinth in Greece, a Moroccan watermill, a map, the pocket watch, barbed wire, the light bulb, a surgical blade, the portable radio, a Leica IIIc 35mm camera, and the personal computer. Returning to the etymology of a thing, the course argues that things are best conceived as gatherings of achievements that are neither wholly exclusive to any single era nor any immediate set of relations. MWF 10:00-10:50. Instructor: Krysta Ryzewski
ARCH 0351 / AWAS 0800 Introduction to the Ancient Near East [Register] [Course Website]
Interested students must register for AWAS 0800.
This course offers an introduction to the study of the political, social and cultural history of the ancient Near East, from prehistory to the end of the Iron age (ca. 330 BC). Both literary sources and archaeological evidence are examined as relevant. Near East is understood here in its widest geographic extent, including primarily the Mesopotamian lowlands, Iranian and Syro-Anatolian highlands, as well as the Levantine coast. State formation and the development of complex societies, cult practices and cuneiform literary traditions, art, architecture and material culture, issues of landscape and settlement systems, agricultural production, regional and interregional trade, and craft production will constitute the central issues in the course. Instructor: Omur Harmansah
ARCH 0521 / HIAA 0380 Roman Art and Architecture: From Hadrian to Late Antiquity [Register]
Interested students must register for HIAA 0380.
The seminar examines the surviving environments and artifacts created to suit Roman tastes in the high and late empires. It also provides an introduction to the relationship between Roman art and the art of emerging Christianity. Beginning with a study of Roman art in the high empire, and ending with the demise of Rome as a capital in the fourth and fifth centuries C.E., the course focuses on an especially creative and complex period in Roman visual, cultural and religious history. MWF 12:00-12:50. Instructor: Rebecca Molholt
ARCH 770 Food and Drink in Classical Antiquity (Ancient Studies 1120, Classics 770) [Register] [Course Website]
Everybody eats - but patterns of eating (and drinking) vary dramatically from culture to culture. This course traces the mechanics of food production and consumption in the ancient Mediterranean world, considers how diet marked symbolic boundaries and gender differences, and in general explores the extent to which the ancient Greeks and Romans “were what they ate.” MWF 11:00-11:50. Instructor: Susan E. Alcock
ARCH 801 / CLAS 810A Alexander the Great and the Alexander Tradition [Register] [Course Website]
This course focuses on a single historical figure, Alexander the Great, using him as a point of departure for exploring a wide range of problems and approaches that typify the field of Classical Studies. How knowledge of Alexander has been used and abused provides a fascinating case study in the formation and continuous reinterpretation of the western Classical tradition. MWF 1:00-1:50. Instructor: John F. Cherry
For Undergraduates and Graduates
New! ARCH 1160 The World of Museums: Logistics, Laws, and Loans [Register] [Course Website]
This course will examine critically the collection of ancient objects. Through functional, historical, material and aesthetic lenses an analysis of the relationships between the cultural contexts of objects will be examined. Case studies, guest lectures and site visits (virtual and real) will be used to demonstrate evolving theory, practice, law and ethical implications of collecting archaeological objects. W 2:00-4:20. Instructor: Morag Kersel
ARCH 1200F City and the Festival: Cult Practices and Architectural Production in the Ancient Near East (History of Art and Architecture 1200) [Register] [Course Website]
This course will explore urbanization, formation of urban space, and architectural projects in relation to cult practices and commemorative ceremonies in the Ancient Near East. Investigating case studies from early cities of fourth millenium BC Mesopotamia to Iron Age Syria and Anatolia, we will study processes of the making of urban and extra-urban landscapes in the socio-religious context of festivals. TTh 10:30-11:50. Instructor: Omur Harmansah
ARCH 1202 / HIAA 1200I Hellenistic Art: From Alexander to Cleopatra [Register]
Interested students must register for HIAA 1200I.
Hellenistic art has often been regarded as a chaotic, decadent phase between the golden ages of classical Greece and imperial Rome. Yet the period in the Mediterranean from the death of Alexander the Great in 323 BCE to the Roman conquest of Egypt in 31 BCE saw the creation of some of the greatest masterpieces of ancient art, the development of formal art criticism, and the mass production of art for private enjoyment. The course addresses the new themes and purposes of art in a cosmopolitan culture with its competing centers (Pergamon, Rhodes, Antioch, Alexandria, and Rome); its private patrons, public museums, art historians, and critics; and its innovations in science and politics. Th 4:00-6:20. Instructor: Rebecca Molholt
ARCH 1436 / JUDS 1390 The Archaeology of Jerusalem [Register]
Interested students must register for JUDS 1390.
ARCH 1540 Cultural Heritage: The Players and Politics of Protecting the Past [Register] [Course Website]
From Antarctica to Zimbabwe, cultural heritage encompasses the very old and the still in use, the man-made and the natural, the permanent and the ephemeral -- even the invisible and the edible. This course will explore issues of modern threats to cultural heritage such as tourism and development, questions of authenticity and identity, and archaeology's intersection with law, ethics, public policy, and economics. TTh 2:30-3:50. Instructor: Michelle Berenfeld
New! ARCH 1790 The Nature and Culture of Disaster [Register] [Course Website]
Our view of nature forms the basis of environmental studies, ecotourism, heritage management, and contemporary debates over global warming that impact both public policy and the very way we lead our lives. This course draws from theorists (such as Douglas, Latour, Strathern and Spivak), as well as recent anthropological test cases from Amazonia, Papua New Guinea, and South Africa to look at how humans in the 21st century view nature in terms of stability, instability and disaster. How should we assess the ‘risk culture’ in which we currently live? TTh 1:00-2:20. Instructor: Karen Holmberg
ARCH 1900 The Archaeology of College Hill [Register] [Course Website]
A training class in field and laboratory techniques. Topics include the nature of field archaeology, excavation and survey methodologies, archaeological ethics, computer technologies (such as GIS), and site and artifact analysis and conservation. Students will act as practicing archaeologists through the investigation of local historical and archaeological sites in the College Hill area (e.g. the First Baptist Church of America and the John Brown House). This course is restricted to advanced undergraduate students, and permission to register will be given by instructor after the first class meeting. M 3:00–5:20. Instructor: Krysta Ryzewski
Primarily for Graduates
ARCH 2006 Principles of Archaeology [Register]
Interested students must register for ANTH 2501.
ARCH 2010B Approaches to Archaeological Survey in the Old World (Anthropology 2630) [Register] [Course Website]
Recent decades have witnessed a marked development of interest in regional approaches to the ancient world and its landscapes. This seminar will explore the history of this development, as well as survey’s impact on the work of both ancient historians and archaeologists. Topics to be covered include survey design and methodology, and the wider implications and lessons of regional analysis. W 3:00-5:20. Instructor: John F. Cherry.
ARCH 2010D Archaeology and Religion: Excavating the Sacred from Prehistory to Islam (Religious Studies 2030) [Register] [Course Website]
This course explores methodological approaches and theoretical underpinnings of scholarly (and sometimes unpopular) interpretations of the archaeological record as evidence for the religious life of past societies, considering how archaeologists have treated the analytical categories of ritual, religion, ideology, and the sacred. These discussions will be examined through Mediterranean case studies as a key region in the archaeology of religion. T 4:00-6:20. Instructor: Ian Straughn
ARCH 2105 Ceramic Analysis for Archaeology [Register] [Course Website]
The analysis and the interpretation of ceramic remains allow archaeologists to accomplish varied ends: establish a time scale, document interconnections between different areas, and suggest what activities were carried out at particular sites. The techniques and theories used to bridge the gap between the recovery of ceramics and their interpretation within anthropological contexts are the focus of this seminar. Th 4:00-6:20. Instructor: Laurel Bestock
ARCH 2551 Archaeological Research Methods, Theory and Practicum [Register]
Interested students must register for ANTH 2550.
ARCH 2851 Skills Training in Material Culture Studies I [Register]
When dealing with material culture, one must possess a solid foundation in a range of skills. How does one document and analyze artifacts, architecture and landscapes, what techniques are appropriate in what cases? How should all this information be securely stored and promulgated? This "hands on" class, intended for students in multiple disciplines, will consider the study of particular types of material or bodies of evidence (e.g., pottery, lithics, epigraphy, numismatics). F 3:00-5:20. Instructor: Susan E. Alcock