The Prehistoric Mediterranean
The Mediterranean basin is a crucible of interaction between the societies and cultures of southwest Asia, Europe and north Africa. This course provides an interpretative long-term overview of Mediterranean prehistory from the last Ice Age to the formation of the Classical world.
Key themes include the role of a distinctive environment and central sea in shaping people’s lives, the spread of the earliest hunter-gatherer inhabitants and the origins of maritime activity, the expansion of farming and pastoralism, the emergence of Bronze Age metal-rich societies (complex states in the east, but initially smaller-scale elsewhere), the growth of inter-regional trade, and the transition to Iron Age city-states and empires, the direct precursors of Roman rule.
This course can serve as a foundation for specialized regional courses in the archaeology of the Aegean, Anatolia, the Levant, Egypt and southern Europe, or as a prologue to courses in later Classical archaeology and ancient history.