Western Civilization: The Age of Ancient Empires


‘Western’ concepts of order, government, justice, freedom, and faith were forged in the great empires of the Ancient World. This course explores the Ideology, Economic systems, Military conquests, and Politics of ancient empires and the people they conquered, from circa 750 BCE to 600 CE. Tracing these four factors (I.E.M.P.) reveals common threads and important differences in how these empires exercised power, justified expansion, and attempted to unite the world under their control. The spread of imperial power (and resistance to its demands) shaped and transformed influential human value systems, many of which remain important today as the foundations of ‘Western Civilization.’ This course carefully studies ancient texts, inscriptions, art, and archaeology to reveal the enduring ideas, value systems, and social institutions that were created by the peoples of the ancient Near East, Mediterranean, and Europe.

Principle Text: E. Cline & M. Graham, Ancient Empires: From Mesopotamia to the Rise of Islam (Cambridge University Press: 2011).

Last taught: Fall 2014

Syllabus: PDF

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Teaching Assistant for:

19th Century Europe, University of Florida
ART 101: Beginning Ceramics, Grove City College

Grader for:

Intro to Islamic Civilization, University of Florida
Literature Survey (Core curriculum humanities course), Grove City College