Introduction to the Ancient Near East

0800 [CRN: 15154]

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. The course not only offers a foundational survey of the historical developments in the region, but also addresses the broader methodological and historiographic problems involved in Near Eastern studies. 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. WRIT DPLL
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