Civilization, Science, and Archaeology: Before Greece: The Origins of Civilization in Mesopotamia
This course will introduce students to the early development of civilization in Mesopotamia and Egypt from 4000 B.C.E. through 1000 B.C.E. Origins of agriculture and writing, the evolution of the city, and the structures of the Mesopotamian economy and social order will be discussed. Comparison with contemporary developments in Egypt during the Old and Middle Kingdoms may include a reading of Gilgamesh from 3000 B.C.E. and of the Egyptian Tale of Sinuhe. The course concludes with a discussion of life during the late Bronze Age. Focus will be on life as it was lived and experienced by many groups in pre-classical antiquity rather than on kings and dynasties.
The online version of the Caltech Catalog is provided as a convenience; however, the printed version is the only authoritative source of information about course offerings, option requirements, graduation requirements, and other important topics.