ANTH 216
Urbanism in the Ancient World Spring 2018
Division II Writing Skills Exploring Diversity Initiative
Cross-listed GBST 216 / ANTH 216
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This is a course on cities in the ancient world, which will examine four major ancient urban centers (Nineveh and Nimrud, Iraq; Teotihuacan, Mexico; and Angkor, Cambodia) and end with a sustained, in-depth exploration of urbanism in prehispanic Maya civilization. As more and more people move into cities across the world, human societies are becoming forever transformed. This transformation into an urban globalized world has ancient roots at the beginning of the first civilizations in Euroasia and the Americas. We will delve into the nature of the urban transformation by first exploring sociological and anthropological definitions of urbanism, and recent studies of modern urbanism. We will look at Nineveh, Nimrud, Teotihuacan, and Angkor to consider how ancient urbanism was distinct from modern cities, while at the same time, ancient urbanites had to deal with similar issues as residents of modern cities. We will then examine in more depth the cities of prehispanic Maya civilization, answering such questions as: how different were Maya cities from other premodern ones? Is there one type of Maya city or many? How different was life in Maya cities from life in Maya villages? What were the power structures of Maya cities? How common were immigrants and slaves in these ancient cities? This course fulfills the Exploring Diversity Initiative through a comparative study of urban cultures and societies across the world in premodern times, and by theorizing how power and privilege inequalities were manifested and dealt with in these ancient cities.
The Class: Format: tutorial
Limit: 10
Expected: 10
Class#: 3040
Grading: no pass/fail option, no fifth course option
Requirements/Evaluation: 5-page papers every other week, oral responses on alternate weeks; tutorial attendance is required
Extra Info: may not be taken on a pass/fail basis; not available for the fifth course option
Prerequisites: none
Enrollment Preferences: sophomores; or majors in Anthropology or Sociology
Distributions: Division II Writing Skills Exploring Diversity Initiative
Notes: This course is cross-listed and the prefixes carry the following divisional credit:
GBST 216 Division II ANTH 216 Division II
Attributes: GBST Urbanizing World Electives

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