The Archæology of Exploration, Travel and Trade
Fall Semester 2006
(subject to change)
Class will not meet (Prof. Petruso will be out of town).
ASSIGNMENT: Write an essay on why you travel and how travel has affected you. Length, content and focus of your essay are entirely up to you. Email it to Prof. Petruso as an attachment in MSWord NO LATER THAN NOON ON AUGUST 25; all essays will be posted to the course website by August 27. Read your classmates' essays and be prepared to tease out both common and not-so-common themes at the beginning of class on Sept. 5. Get a head start on the readings for Sept. 12.
Brief review and discussion of essays; general consideration of the history of travel. Belated introduction to the course. Scope, policies, expectations, requirements. Resources. Archaeological methods. Relationship between archaeology and history.
ASSIGNMENT: Edwin Dobb, "Where the Good Begins: Notes on the Art of Modern Travel." Harper's Magazine, July 1998 (accessible through Ebsco); "Prehistory, History, and Archaeology." Ch. 1 in Wenke and Olszewski, Patterns in Prehistory (reader).
Mesopotamia and Egypt: the earliest known travel narratives. Experiencing and imagining the Other, and other places. Travel as metaphor. Distance, knowledge and power.
ASSIGNMENT: Epic of Gilgamesh (entire); The Story of Sinuhe and The Shipwrecked Sailor; Mary Helms, Ulysses' Sail (Library reserve), entire.
Human colonization of the planet. The diffusion of language families. Language and the spread of agriculture.
ASSIGNMENT: Donald Johanson paper on "Origins of Modern Humans"; "The 'Out of Africa' Hypothesis"; "The 'Multiregional' Hypothesis". Michael Balter, "Search for the Indo-Europeans".
PRESENTATIONS: (1) The peopling of the continents (exclusive of Australia): paleontological and archaeological evidence; (2) The peopling of the continents (exclusive of Australia): the DNA evidence.
Boats and Ships I: Excavating ancient vessels. Video: The Ancient Mariners (Odyssey, 1981).
ASSIGNMENT: This documentary deals with how archaeologists investigate ancient ships and boats and how they use them to make inferences about ancient travel and economy. Consider the topics and questions on the poopsheet (reader). INA website pages on Serce Limani and the Yassi Ada Byzantine ships (follow links from Virtual Museum to Mediterranean Sea); J.S. Illsley's course notes, lectures no. 44 and 45.
What are maps, anyway? What do they do? How do they relate to the world? How are they to be understood and interpreted? The earliest maps and their possible functions. Itineraries and ethnic catalogues. The apeiron. Periploi.
ASSIGNMENT: Harley and Woodward (Library Special Collections, 6th floor), pp. 1-12 and 45-81; Norman Thrower, Maps and Civilization, ch. 1 and 2 (reader); peruse the images of ancient maps at the (rather uneven but still useful) Index of Cartographic Images.
PRESENTATIONS: (1) Early Egyptian maps; (2) Presocratic Greek conceptions of the world and the cosmos.
Boats and ships II: Pure inference. Archaeological evidence and theories about the origin of the boat. The peopling of Australia. Purposeful maritime colonization: a Mediterranean example.
ASSIGNMENT: J.S. Illsley's course lecture notes nos. 9, 11, 14, 15, 16; Cyprian Broodbank, "Ulysses Without Sails." World Archaeology 24:3 (Feb. 1993), pp. 315-331 (accessible through JSTOR); C. Broodbank and T. Strasser, "Migrant Farmers and the Neolithic Colonization of Crete." Antiquity 65:247 (June 1991), pp. 231-245 (Library E-Reserves).
PRESENTATIONS: (1) Rafts and skins; (2) Barks and dugouts; (3) The colonization of Australia.
Anthropological models of trade. Substantivism and formalism. Karl Polanyi on markets in antiquity. Core and periphery: World System Theory.
ASSIGNMENT: Daniel Snell, Life in the Ancient Near East (UTA Libraries Internet Electronic Resource), Appendix: "Theories of Ancient Economies and Societies"; Summary of Wallerstein on World System Theory.
PRESENTATIONS: (1) Karl Polanyi on markets in antiquity; (2) Archaeological utility of World System Theory: survey.
Materials analysis glosses on trade: Case studies.
ASSIGNMENT: Wright, "Archaeology and Trade" (reader), entire.
PRESENTATIONS: (1) Distribution of chlorite in Asia and its ramifications; (2) Amber and the amber trade; (3) Obsidian and its distribution in the Mediterranean and western Asia; (4) Tin in the Bronze Age: sources, distribution and economic interpretation.
Animals of traction, portage, riding, power and prestige: Ox, ass, horse, camel.
ASSIGNMENT: Borowski (reader), pp. 99-125; Rackham (Library reserve), ch. 1, 2 and 5; David Anthony, "Early Horseback Riding and Warfare in the Steppes".
PRESENTATIONS: (1) Archaeology of the horse: domestication, use and spread; (2) Archaeology of the camel: domestication, use and spread.
Discovery and application of the principle of rotary motion. Wheels and wagons and their ramifications. Invention, use and diffusion of the chariot.
ASSIGNMENT: Bakker, Jan et al., "The Earliest Evidence of Wheeled Vehicles in Europe and the Near East." Antiquity 73 (1999), pp. 778-790 (Library E-Reserves); Wikipedia entry, Chariot; essay on the Egyptian chariot.
PRESENTATIONS: (1) Archaeological evidence for the earliest wheeled vehicles; (2) Chariots: invention, use and spread.
Organized trade, state-sponsored trade, international trade in antiquity. Mesopotamia, the Indus and Anatolia.
ASSIGNMENT: Tahsin Özguç. "An Assyrian Trading Outpost" (reader); D.T. Potts, "Distant Shores: Ancient Near Eastern Trade with South Asia and Northeast Africa." In Jack Sasson, ed., Civilizations of the Ancient Near East, pp. 1451-1463 (Central Library, 2nd floor reference collection).
PRESENTATIONS: (1) Locating Dilmun, Magan and Meluhha; (2) A Bronze Age trading network: Assyrian companies and agents at Kanesh.
Boats and ships III: Bronze Age boats and ships in the Mediterranean. Coasting and tramping.
ASSIGNMENT: J.S. Illsley's course lecture notes no. 07, 18, 20; INA website pages on Gelidonya and Uluburun (follow the links from Virtual Museum and Mediterranean Sea).
PRESENTATIONS: (1) The Akrotiri frescoes as evidence for ship construction; (2) The Uluburun shipwreck: cargo and route and cargo; (3) The Gelidonya shipwreck: cargo and route; (4) Oxhide ingots: distribution and economic significance.
Quantifying trade: Metrology of the Aegean Bronze Age. Pots, trade and economy in the classical world. Pytheas and his travels.
ASSIGNMENT: Petruso, Keos VIII (library reserve), pp. 1-20 and 60-68, and peruse the plates; Cunliffe, The Extraordinary Voyage of Pytheas the Greek (entire);
PRESENTATIONS: (1) The Canaanite jar: form and function, contents and distribution; (2) Amphoras and the documentation of the ancient wine trade in the classical Mediterranean.
Paths, tracks, roads: location, functions, construction and upkeep. The earliest archaeological evidence for tracks and roads. Xerxes' Royal Road. Complex road networks. What is a frontier? Postscript: Diffusionism and neodiffusionism.
ASSIGNMENT: Hindley (Library reserve), ch. 1-4; Casson, ch. 10; Stengel, "The Diffusionists Have Landed." Atlantic Monthly, Jan. 2000 (reader).
PRESENTATIONS: (1) The Roman road system as a tool of communication and control; (2) The Roman limes.
Housekeeping • Bibliography