HISTORY COURSES
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Professor Peter A. Piccione


Spring Semester, 2017

History 270.01: Special Topics: Ancient Egypt: Environment and History. This course focuses on the role that environment played in the formation and progress of ancient Egyptian history and culture from the Neolithic Era to the Ptolemaic Period (7000-34 BC). By combining traditional text-based historical methodologies with archaeology, and with careful and circumspect inclusion of issues of environmental determinism, it examines the geography and topography of the Nile Valley (river, cultivation, deserts, climate, seasons, etc.) to understand how the Egyptians adapted them for development, and to understand the extent to which environmental issues could have impacted the course of history. Specifically, it uses texts and inscriptions as a counterpoise to the physical and environmental evidence, assessing the degree to which they might or might not corroborate arguments of environmental causation. Archaeological data on specific sites and processes are also integrated into the argumentation. Important topics covered are: the flood cycle of the Nile River, its connection to the agricultural system, land tenure, the distributive economy and taxation, the significance of the river as a means of communication and transportation, the irrigation system, adaptations to the shiftings of the river, the nature and character of Egyptian cities, the influence of geography on conceptions of cosmos and religion, astronomy and the stars, calendars and reckoning time, and the relationship of time and space in the Egyptian psyche. In terms of cultural ecology, the course probes the extent to which Nile-flood levels could affect Egyptian history in any given period, as well as catastrophic events (earthquakes, eruptions, etc.). Textual genres examined in this course include: Egyptian political and historical inscriptions, religious texts (hymns, prayers and myths), Nile flood-level records, astronomical texts, tax and rental accounts, land leases and bills of sale, wills, deeds of endowment, royal exemption decrees, graffiti, private letters and autobiographical inscriptions, as well as Greek and Roman tracts on Egyptian geography, history and economy (viz. Hecataeus, Herodotus, Diodorus, Strabo, Plutarch, etc.).
History 115: Civilizations: Concord or Conflict . This course presents an historical survey of certain major civilizations and cultures of early human history (up to A.D. sixteenth century) centering around the theme of inter-cultural connections and interrelationships. What issues governed their interactions, and what was the impact of their contacts, leading to such questions as, when and why did they war? When did they not? When did they engage in peaceful commerce? What legacies did they pass to each other, how did their religions interact, etc.? Major regions include: East-West relations over time, Egypt and Mesopotamia, Greece and Asia, Rome, Africa and Asia, Europe, the Middle East and China. A major focus will be the Great Crusades (A.D. 1095-1281) from both the European and Saracen perspectives to demonstrate commonalities and differences, and the extent to which disparate cultures might understand the same historical processes the same or differently. Special attention is paid to original documentation (i.e., primary texts) from these societies, including their own religious and historical inscriptions, legal texts, literary works, etc., as well as their material culture. In this manner, students can understand these societies from what contemporaries wrote about them, and they can use these primary texts to analyze and assess specific historical and cultural issues.

Fall Semester, 2016

History 230.01: Ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia: A Survey of the Ancient Near East. This course is an historical survey of the major civilizations of ancient Western Asia and North Africa, including: Sumer, Egypt, Akkad, Babylonia, Assyria, the Hittites, Phoenicia, Syria, and Canaan from the origins of agriculture, c. 8500 BC, to the conquest of Alexander the Great, c. 330 B.C. The class explores the historical development of the different civilizations and their cultural and political interrelationships, as revealed specifically in their archaeology and texts. A special focus will concentrate on legal structures and law codes across the Near East.
History 115.53: World History in Hollywood Films. This course provides a survey of selected civilizations in World History from 3,000 BC to 1300 AD. It focuses on deconstructing mythologies, false perceptions and popular misconceptions about those civilizations by examining popular Hollywood films and foreign cinematic spectacles. Students will study and discuss specific historical issues as they are properly understood from original primary sources, view the films and analyze discrepancies between fact and fiction by asking pertinent historical questions and applying proper historical methodology. At the same time, students will consider the efficacy and value of historiophoty or filmic history, which is an emerging field of professional historiography that advocates dramatic historical films to recreate and understand historical processes. The course will study the strengths and limitations of film entertainment as a medium of historical expression. There is also the issue to consider the extent to which screenwriting--and its strict requirements--are compatible with the stringent requisites of historical writing and research. Hence, students will understand to what extent historical films might or might not portray an accurate view of the past, as well as how history itself--in film and elsewhere--is often distorted for a variety of reasons, including: dramatic license for entertainment purposes, to propagandize particular interpretations, to advocate change, as well as to accommodate a society's needs to sanitize and/or mythologize its (or another's) past, or else to indict or criminalize it.

Spring Semester, 2016

History 270.01: Special Topics: Medicine and Magic in Ancient Egypt. This upper-level lecture and discussion course explores the role of medicine in ancient Egyptian society. Through an understanding of the Egyptian healing arts and their social aspects, we comprehend the ancient Egyptians' views toward health and the nature of the human organism and its place in the cosmos. This course sets the practice of Egyptian medicine within the ancient Egyptian ethos and world-view, placing it within the framework of Egyptian cosmology, standards of morality and magico-religious beliefs. The focus of this course is the essential nature of Egyptian healing in which deep seated religious notions and so-called magical practices wholly integrated with empirico-rational approaches to form an integrated but multi-faceted medical therapy. Topics of study include: the fusion of magical and rational therapies; the theoretical bases of disease, both divine and physical; Egyptian therapeutical practices and techniques, including, the nature of surgery, surgical tools, and the uses of trepanation; medical specializations; pharmacology and pharmacopoeia; mummification; the influence of Egyptian medicine and pharmacology on the Greeks; the background and training of the Egyptian physician and his role as physician-priest, the issue of female physicians, and the existence of sanatoria, i.e., Egyptian temples as centers for medical treatment and pilgrimage. The course pays special attention to the practice of magical medicine, the ancient Egyptian medical papyri, their form and content, and what these indicate about the Egyptian approach to treatment, to women's health, including gynaecological and obstetrical practices, and to dentistry and dental therapies. In this regard, students might read translations of the papyri. Finally, the class will examine the techniques and findings of modern palaeopathology, i.e., the pathological study of mummies and ancient human remains. Here the purpose is to determine the general physical condition of the Egyptians, their standards of health, the biological evidence of disease, and causes of death--all through the use of forensics, X-ray, Computer-aided Tomography (CT scanning), Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI), molecular biology (e.g., DNA cloning), etc.

Fall Semester, 2015

History 270.01: Special Topics: The Ancient Egyptian Empire. Combining texts and archaeology, this course centers on the history and character of the ancient Egyptian imperial experience in the New Kingdom (Dynasties 18-20), c. 1570-1070 BC. Topics include: form and development of empire, political organization, military issues (history, technology, etc.), great battles (Megiddo, Kadesh, etc.), policies toward Nubia and Asia, rising economic wealth, social and intellectual advances, including: cosmopolitan life at home, growing cultural sophistication, influence of foreign ideas, religious issues and experimentation, cult of the Aten and the Amarna experience. An important issue is contact with Minoans and Mycenaeans, battles against Mycenaean raiders, and use of Mycenaean mercenaries. Finally is the retreat from empire, including the Sea People wars, Philistine client states, and the rising threat from Nubia and Assyria.

Spring Semester, 2015

History 370.02: Special Topics:Witchcraft, Magic and Religion in Ancient Egypt. This course studies the nature of ancient Egyptian religion and its essential magical character. Taking a texts approach supplemented by archaeology and material culture, it traces the history and character of Egyptian religion and magical practices from the Archaic Period (ca. 3050 BC) through early Christianity (c. 7th cent AD)yes, Coptic Christian magic!. It defines the role and nature of Egyptian so-called "magic" in its native concept (heka, 'creative power') and sets it against Greek and Roman (i.e., European) conceptions of sorcery and witchcraft. It explores the esoteric nature of Egyptian religious thought and the wide variety of beliefs, often contradictory to modern thinking, yet which the Egyptians were able to combine into a unified religious system. Subjects include: the nature and character of magical practice, deities, mythologies and mythopoeic thinking, cosmology and cosmogony, state religion, personal piety and funerary beliefs and customs, temples and shrines, secret passages and crypts, religious rituals, spells and incantations, mystery rites and religious initiations, and the religious function of sports and athletics. Texts include selections from: the Pyramid Texts, Coffin Texts, Book of the Dead, the magical papyri, the books of the netherworld and ritual inscriptions from temple walls. A final project may include a recreation of an authentic mystery/religious ritual.

Fall Semester, 2014

History 230.01: Ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia: A Survey of the Ancient Near East.

Spring Semester, 2014

History 270.01: Special Topics: The Kingdoms of Nubia and Kush in the Ancient Nile River Valley. This course provides an historical and archaeological survey of the ancient civilizations of the Middle and Upper Nile Valley. Located immediately south of Egypt, they include the tribal kingdoms and societies of Nubia, as well as the great Kingdom of Kush further up the river with its successive capitals at Kerma, Napata and Mero. The period of coverage encompasses prehistoric times, when populations first appeared in the Nile Valley, down through the fourth century A.D., including the ultimate fall of Kush in A.D. 350 by the Axumites of Abyssinia. Significantly, it also includes discussions of Egyptian history and archaeology specifically when the Egyptians interacted with Nubia and Kush, either as conquerors or conquered, as well as relations with Ptolemaic Egypt and the Roman and Byzantine Empires. The course also draws on the anthropological record to discuss issues of Nubian and Egyptian ethnicities. Because the Kushites did not adopt writing and did not create a limited use of written records until ca. 10th century B.C., the course will supplement traditional text-based historical methodologies with a concentration on material culture from the archaeological record. With the approval of the appropriate program directors, credit for this course can also be applied to the Archaeology major and the African Studies program.

Fall Semester, 2013

History 270.01: Special Topics: Ancient Egypt: Land, Environment and History.

Spring Semester, 2013

History 270.01: Special Topics: Survey of Ancient Egypt, Nubia and Kush This course provides a survey of the history of the ancient civilizations of the Middle and Lower Nile River Valley, including Egypt, Nubia and the Kingdom of Kush from prehistoric times through the fourth century A.D. The intent is to provide an integrated perspective on Nilotic civilizations, to view Nile Valley civilizations as a cultural entity, by placing Egypt within its African context, and exploring its cultural, ethnic and political relations with Nubia and Kush. The course will examine the issues of origins, ethnicities, languages, as well as similarities and differences among the Egyptians, Nubians and Kushites. The approach will be to integrate the history of the valley civilizations into a single historical narrative. Given the nature of the historical record in Egypt and Nubia, the course will focus as much on material culture and archaeology as on primary historical texts and inscriptions. Students should not expect an Afrocentric approach to Egyptian culture and ethnicity (Egypt was not a black African civilization), nor will it abide a so-called "Kemetic" interpretation of Egyptian history and archaeology. These very narrow and politically motivated approaches are, in their essence, anti-intellectual and purposefully distortive in their intent. They function at a level that is the equivalent of afrocentric creationism.

Fall Semester, 2012

History 230.01: Ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia: A Survey of the Ancient Near East.

Spring Semester, 2012

History 270.01: Special Topics: Ancient Egyptian Life and Society Using Egyptian texts and archaeology as a basis, this course introduces basic daily life issues in ancient Egypt from its historical origins, ca. 5000 BC to the Persian conquest of 525 BC. The goal of this course is for students to understand how historical texts and material culture (objects) can be combined to reveal aspects of life and society. Topics include: anthropological origins and ethnicities, historical development, language, writing and education, social institutions, status and roles of women, love and marriage, sex and sexuality, medicine and medical practice, warfare, religion and magic, games, athletics and sports. The class will also consider Egypt's social legacy to Africa. A focal point of the course is a final group project (in place of a term paper) consisting of a student-organized virtual museum exhibitions on the daily life of the ancient Egyptians. This exhibit will bring together a virtual collection of Egyptian objects from museums around the word, complete with detailed descriptive labels, explanatory essays, and final project reports. Its purpose is to demonstrate and analyze the historical and archaeological issues discussed in the class through the medium of Egyptian material culture.

Fall Semester, 2011

History 370.01: Special Topics: Ancient Egyptian Medicine and Medical Practice This course explores the role of medicine in ancient Egyptian society. Through an understanding of the Egyptian healing arts and their social aspects, we comprehend the ancient Egyptians' views toward health and the nature of the human organism and its place in the cosmos. This course sets the practice of Egyptian medicine within the ancient Egyptian ethos and world-view, placing it within the framework of Egyptian cosmology, standards of morality and magico-religious beliefs. The focus of this course is the essential nature of Egyptian healing in which deep seated religious notions and so-called magical practices wholly integrated with empirico-rational approaches to form an integrated and multi-faceted medical therapy. Topics of study include: the fusion of magical and rational therapies; the theoretical bases of disease (divine and physical); therapeutical practices, including, surgery, surgical tools; medical specializations; pharmacology and pharmacopoeia; mummification; the influence of Egyptian medicine and pharmacology on the Greeks; the training of the physician and his role as physician-priest, female physicians, and the existence of sanatoria, i.e., Egyptian temples as centers for medical treatment and pilgrimage. The course will pay special attention to the practice of magical medicine, the ancient Egyptian medical papyri, and what they indicate about the Egyptian approach to treatment, to women's health, including gynaecological and obstetrical practices, and to dentistry and dental therapies. Finally, the class will examine the techniques and findings of modern palaeopathology, i.e., the pathological study of mummies and ancient human remains. Here the purpose is to determine the general health of the Egyptians, the biological evidence of disease, and causes of death--through the use of X-ray, Computer-aided Temography (CT scanning), Magnetic Resonance Imaging, molecular biology (e.g., DNA cloning), etc.

Spring Semester, 2011

History 270.01: Special Topics: Superpowers: Egypt & the Hittite Empire This course provides a comparison and contrast of the political and social histories of the ancient Egyptians and the Hittites. Beginning in the 3rd millennium BC with the Egyptian Old Kingdom through to the waning of the Egyptian Empire by 1000 BC, it examines the nature of society and government, especially in the formation of the imperial state and ultimately Egyptian hegemony in Western Asia. It also examines the political and social history and archaeology of Anatolia in the Bronze Age from before the arrival of Indo-Europeans in c. 23rd century BC , the Old Assyrian colonies, native Hattians, and ultimately the Hittite Old and New Kingdoms, including the formation of its great empire. Here it considers the Hittite penchant for treaties and codified laws, social and political organization, warfare and conquest, and relations with its neighbors (Mitannians, Assyrians, Trojans, Mycenaeans), and especially the Egyptians. It also includes Hittite relations with Troy (Wilusha), the Mycenaeans (Ahhiyawa) and the political situation on the coast of Asia Minor in the Late Bronze Age. Thus, it seeks to provide a Near Eastern perspective on those cultures and on traditions about the Trojan War. A significant issue is the nature of Egyptian-Hittite political and military relations at the height of both empires, when they warred heavily against each other as the two superpowers of their age, leading to the great peace treaty and alliance. Finally, the course examines their later diplomatic relations, and the major forces that were unleashed against them with the collapse of Mycenaean civilization, leading to the Hittites' political extinction and the crumbling of Egyptian power.

Fall Semester, 2010

History 230.01: Ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia: A Survey of the Ancient Near East.

Spring Semester, 2010

History 670.01: Graduate Research Seminar: Life and Times in Ancient Egypt This course deals specifically with the life of the common person in Egyptian society from the Old Kingdom through the end of the Persian Period (c. 2600-332 BC). It combines the traditional textual criticism-based methodologies of historians with the archaeological and philological methods of the Egyptologist to explore ancient Egyptian social history. Topics are arranged conceptually, not chronologically, to provide insight into Egyptian life and society and social institutions. The course emphasizes the interdisciplinary methodologies used by Egyptologists to understand Egyptian civilization. Topics of study revolve around the reading list of books (see below), as well as outside articles assigned from journals and collected studies (see Web pages). They include: development of political history (as a basis), geography and environment, using archaeology to reconstruct social history, Egyptian language and writing, structure of society, literacy and education, social initiation, economic structures and institutions, occupations and divisions iof labor, function and practice of religion, medicine and medical magic, and the role and status of women.

Fall Semester, 2009

History 270.01: Special Topics: Ancient Egypt: Land, Environment and History.

Spring Semester, 2009

History 470.01: Research Seminar in the Ancient Near East and Egypt. This course is one of capstone seminars in the History program at the College of Charleston in the Spring semester. In a traditional seminar setting, junior and senior History majors will discuss advanced readings and issues in ancient Near Eastern history and historiography. These readings will include both primary and secondary sources of historical significance. Importantly, each student is required to write a research paper (20-30 pages long) on a viable topic related to the ancient Near East (including Egypt and Anatolia). Here the student will formulate a specific topic in agreement with the professor from a range of general themes and issues provided by the latter, or else the student might suggest a theme of his/her own. The student will proceed in a methodical manner to research and write the paper over the length of the term, beginning with general readings, formulation of the topic, composing an annotated bibliography, outlining the paper, authoring first and second drafts, and completing the final draft. In the second-draft stage, the student will present a formal oral report to the seminar on issues and findings for group discussion. At all points of the process, the student will remain in close consultation with the professor.

Fall Semester, 2008

History 230.01: Ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia: A Survey of the Ancient Near East.

Spring Semester, 2008

History 370.01: Special Topics: The Egyptian Empire. Combining texts and archaeology, this course centers on the history and character of the ancient Egyptian imperial experience specifically during the New Kingdom (Dynasties 18-20), c. 1570-1070 BC. Topics include: the form and development of the empire, political organization, military issues (history, technology, etc.), the great battles (e.g., Megiddo, Kadesh, etc.), policies toward Nubia and Asia, rising economic wealth, social and intellectual advances, including: cosmopolitan life at home, growing cultural sophistication, influence of foreign ideas, religious issues and experimentation, King Akhenaten, the cult of the Aten and the Amarna experience; finally the retreat from empire, including the Sea People wars, the Philistine client states, and the ultimate rising threat from Nubia and Assyria.

Fall Semester, 2007

History 270.01: Special Topics: Ancient Mesopotamia and Western Asia. This course surveys the history of the ancient Near East, specifically in Western Asia, from the Neolithic Period through the Persian Empire, ca. 10,000-331 BC. It focuses on the rise of civilization in the Tigris-Euphrates river valley and the subsequent history and society of the kingdoms of Mesopotamia, the Mediterranean coast, Asia Minor and the Iranian plateau, including: Sumer, Akkad, Babylonia, Assyria, the Hittites, Syria, Phoenicia Canaan, and Persia. As such, it brings together the academic disciplines of Assyriology, Sumerology, Hittitology, Syro-Palestinian Studies and Achaemenid Studies. The class will explore the formation and interrelations of the different cultures, as revealed specifically in both their texts and archaeology, combining written documentation with material culture.

Spring Semester, 2007

History 270.01: Special Topics: Introduction to Ancient Egypt. This course is an essential primer in ancient Egyptian civilization and culture, including the accuracy of current popular perceptions of ancient Egypt, as well as its legacy and impact on the modern world. Using ancient Egyptian texts and material culture as a basis, this course surveys the political and social history of ancient Egypt from the New Stone Age to Alexander the Great (7000-332 BC). Topics include: anthropological origins and ethnicities, political and historical development, geography, social institutions, status of women, religion and magic, daily life activities, language and writing and more. The class will also consider how the modern west interprets Egypt as a major contributor to the development of western civilization, viewing itself in many ways as an heir of Egyptian culture, while at the same time it categorizes much of it as culturally alien and otherly.

Fall Semester, 2006

History 230.01: Ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia: A Survey of the Ancient Near East.

Spring Semester, 2005

History 370.01: Special Topics: Historical Perspectives in Ancient Egyptian Religion. Taking a texts approach, this course deals with the history and character of ancient Egyptian religion in its most accessible aspects from the Archaic Period of Egyptian history (ca. 3050 BC) through the end of the Ptolemaic Period (c. 30 BC). It attempts to explore the esoteric nature of Egyptian religious thought and the wide variety of beliefs that often seem contradictory to modern perceptions, yet which the Egyptians were able--for the most part--to combine into a unified religious system. Subjects include: the nature of deity and mythopoeic thinking, its historical development, world views and cosmology, ethical systems and beliefs, important myths, the issue of divine kingship, state religion, personal piety and funerary beliefs and customs, temples and shrines, religious rituals and so-called magical practices, mystery rites and initiation, and the religious function of sports and athletics.

Fall Semester, 2004

History 370.01: Special Topics: Ancient Egyptian Medicine and Medical Magic.

Spring Semester, 2004

History 470.01: Research Seminar in the Ancient Near East.

Fall Semester, 2003

History 230.01: Ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia: A Survey of the Ancient Near East.
History 101.019/022: The Rise of European Civilization (to A.D. 1715). This course is a survey of European history from antiquity through the Age of Discovery and to the coming of European colonialism. It examines ideas and events that contributed to the rise of Europe, its political, economic, and social institutions, and, especially, its conceptions of itself. Here the course examines how Europe's drive to colonize and exploit other lands and resources would have been informed by the Europeans' perceptions of their own culture and their special place in the world. In this regard, the course focuses on European contacts with eastern cultures through the ages in order to determine how Europeans conceived of themselves particularly as a "western" civilization. Thus, the course engages such issues as how did the West perceive the non-West (and act on those notions), and, commensurately, how did the non-West perceive the West? Discussions will include European contacts with the Middle East, Africa, and Asia; invasions by the Mongols, Moors, and Turks, European invasions of the Middle East, Jews living in Europe, and the extent of Arabic knowledge and erudition in Europe in the Middle Ages. As a case in point, the course will consider the Crusades from both the European and Arab perspectives to show how different cultures viewed the same historical processes differently. Through this approach, we seek to understand the extent to which a common European identity derived from a sense of shared values versus entirely different people in other places who did not share those values. Finally, we hope to answer the basic questions: what is Western Civilization, and how did the West become the West?

Spring Semester, 2003

History 270.080: Special Topics: Social History of Ancient Egypt. This course deals specifically with the life of the common man and woman in Egyptian society from the Old Kingdom through the Ptolemaic Period (c. 2600-30 BC). Topics are arranged conceptually (not chronologically) to provide insight into Egyptian social institutions and the solutions that the Egyptians devised to cope with life and its uncertainties. Subjects include: language and writing (including elementary lessons in reading and writing Egyptian hieroglyphs), the decipherment of hieroglyphs, the educational system and issue of literacy, structure of society, the role of social initiation, economic structures and institutions, types of occupations and labor conditions, social advancement, function and practice of religion, medicine and medical magic, role and status of women in society (motherhood, marriage), love and sex, games and recreation, and conceptions of drama.

Fall Semester, 2002

History 270.01: Special Topics: Europe in the Ancient Near East. This course examines the historical relationships between the ancient Near East and Europe in the second and first millennia B.C., including: Minoans and Mycenaeans in Egypt and Asia, the Trojan War from Hittite sources, Iron Age migrations, Hellenistic kingdoms, the fusion of Greek and Near Eastern cultures, and Alexandria from the Egyptian perspective. The course seeks to deconstruct the meaning of "hellenistic" and set it against notions of what constitutes "hellenic" in the Near East, and so invalidating the modern nineteenth century myth of hellenic cultural superiority over hellenistic. Topics include: Eastern contributions to Greek civilization, multi-cultural nature of Egyptian Ptolemaic society, Alexandrian medicine and science, learning, technology and philosophy in the Near East.

Spring Semester, 2002

History 270.01: Special Topics: Survey of Ancient Egypt. This course offers a survey primarily of the political history of ancient Egypt from the Neolithic period up to the conquest of Alexander the Great (7000-332 BC). Topics include: political and historical development, and geography. The class will also consider early Egyptian contacts with Greek civilization and the issue of legacy to the western world and to Africa.
History 104.005/006: World History Since A.D. 1500. This course is an historical survey of the major civilizations and cultures of human history from the sixteenth century to the present day. It focuses on the interaction of major world cultures and civilizations and their search for solutions to issues related to social, economic, political and intellectual development. A primary focus of the course is the issue of conflict and various cultural approaches to the resolution of conflict.

Fall Semester, 2001

History 230.01: Ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia: A Survey of the Ancient Near East.

Spring Semester, 2001

History 330.086: Special Topics: Medicine in Ancient Egypt.

Fall Semester, 2000

History 370.01: Special Topics: Historical Perspectives in Ancient Egyptian Religion.

Spring Semester, 2000

History 270.01: Special Topics: Survey of Ancient Egypt. A social history of ancient Egypt, this course deals specifically with the life of the common person in Egyptian society from the Old Kingdom through the Ptolemaic Period (c. 2600-30 BC). Topics are arranged conceptually to elucidate Egyptian social practices and institutions. Subjects include: language and writing (including elementary lessons in reading and writing Egyptian hieroglyphs), the decipherment of hieroglyphs, the educational system and issues of literacy, social advancement and structure of society, economic institutions, occupations and labor conditions, technology and engineering, medicine and obstetrics, status of women, motherhood, marriage, romance and love, sexual mores and activities, games and recreation, including the role of athletics in religious worship, conceptions of drama and the earliest recorded uses of sacred drama in religious rituals.

Fall Semester, 1999

History 233.01: Special Topics: Ancient Egypt and the Origins of Western Civilization. This course offers a broad survey of the social and political history of ancient Egypt up through the death of Cleopatra (30 BC). Topics include: anthropological origins, ethnicities, political and historical development, geography, religion, language and writing. Of particular emphasis is the issue of the legacy of Egypt to the West, either through the Classical World or the Near East.

Spring Semester, 1999

History 230: Ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia: A Survey of the Ancient Near East.

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