In this course we shall study major developments in the archaeology of the Middle East in the Middle and Late Bronze Ages and the Iron Age, focussing particularly on the areas covered today by Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Israel, Palestine, Jordan and Turkey, and to a lesser extent Cyprus, Egypt, Arabia and Iran. Through study of a range of political entities including the Hittites, Babylonians, Assyrians, Elamites, Canaan and the Achaemenids we shall consider broad themes such as imperialism, trade, sedentism and nomadism, urban and rural dynamics, cult and religion, economy and social structure. Students will gain an intellectual appreciation of important past cultures as well as an understanding of how contemporary archaeology in the Middle East is situated within a shifting social and political setting.
Teaching will be through lectures and a visit to the British Museum.
A broad spread of assessment methods will be used. This course is normally a prerequisite for the third year course ARCL3051 Archaeology of Mesopotamia.