HIST 1010, Weeks 1-4 Lecture Notes
HIST 1010, Weeks 1-4 Lecture Notes Hist 1010
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Peyton Robison HIST 1010 Fall 2015 Dr. Melissa Blair Week 1 NO LECTURE NOTES FROM THE FIRST DAY OF CLASS, AUGUST 18. August 20, 2015 The First Humans and the Rise of Agriculture I. How do we know what we know? – A Brief Introduction to the Field of History II. Rise of Homo Sapiens a. Homo Erectus and Other Precursors b. Homo Sapiens and the Importance of Language c. The Social Structure of Homo Sapiens before Agriculture III. The Coming of Settled Agriculture a. Social Structures in Settled Agricultural Communities How do we know what we know about the past? o Historians primarily use written material More data is available as history progresses The really distant past has no written evidence—historians use good guesses Written records exist in a context (bias, opinions, position) by the author; someone involved, someone watching Choices must be made: what is important to record and what is not? Analyzing context and interpreting and reinterpreting sources is important o General consensus can change Ex. Reconstruction 100 years ago vs. Present Day Today’s Questions What were some of the key evolutionary developments by other hominins before the rise of early modern humans (Homo Sapiens)? What were some of the factors pushing the migration of Homo Sapiens and other early humans across the entire Earth? How did the rise of settled agriculture change life for early humans? What do we know about society and social structures in early human communities? Timeline of Early Hominins (all dates approximate) 3.2 million years ago – early bipedal hominins (Lucy & friends) 1.8 million years ago – Homo Habilis develops – first member of Homo human) genus 1.8 million years ago – Homo Erectus develops 1.5 million – 700,000 years ago – Homo Sapiens (modern humans) develop in Africa 70,000-10,000 years ago – Homo Sapiens leave Africa and spread out across all landmasses except Antarctica Bipedalism Peyton Robison HIST 1010 Fall 2015 Dr. Melissa Blair Week 1 o Evolutionary disadvantage Much slower than animals on four legs Homo Habilis and Homo Erectus o Bigger brains than early hominins o Making tools Finding things and fashioning them to help them do things (cut, scrape, etc.) Homo Erectus o Much taller than earlier bipedal creatures o Brains much bigger o Became omnivorous—eating both meat and vegetable matter Earlier hominins were just vegetarian Meat gives more calories, and bigger brains need more calories VERY IMPORTANT in the continued growth of brains Allowed eventually for language development o They gave birth to biologically immature babies Babies can’t take care of themselves Because of bigger brains, babies had to develop bigger heads (so they could still fit through birth canal) Women had to intensively care for infants because of their lactation They had to have help—working together Men provided food for women and children Someone had to defend Led to cooperation and a sense of community o Learn to control fire and cook Cooked meat yields more calories than raw meat o Begin to leave central Africa Remains found in Indonesia, China, England, etc. Still a dry period in history—not an island yet Scholars theorize that they leave because (bigger brains) they need more calories Exhausted the food supply in their area? Group became too big for their area? Split apart? Another theory that the change of the climate, retreating of glaciers, meant that they had to find new food supplies Homo Sapiens (what we are) o Stayed exclusively in Africa for a long, long time Evidence suggests that before they left Africa, apart from language, they had evolved into modern human beings (would fit in with us) o Became able to make words and arrange words that conveyed meaning (SO IMPORTANT) Able to communicate with young how to stay out of trouble/find food Increases chances of survival and evolutionary success Evidence of trade among ancient Homo Sapiens because of communication Peyton Robison HIST 1010 Fall 2015 Dr. Melissa Blair Week 1 Language leads into “higher order thinking”—beliefs, art, aesthetic tastes, etc. Cave paintings, carvings, figurines Burial with grave goods o Spiritual system and belief of an afterlife? Ability to develop more complex social structure o Hierarchies and division of labor (evidenced by cave paintings and beads, etc.) – macro level o Smaller level – organization around families Sexual division of labor within families Men hunted Women gathered closer to home (activities able to do with children) NOT BECAUSE MEN WERE STRONGER— because… Social Structures pre-agriculture Groups organized on basis of family units, perhaps sharing food with other families within the community Sexual division of labor: men hunted, women gathered nearer the home camp Sexual division of labor arose due to centrality of women’s reproductive labor, that is, the work of bearing and raising children, which was vital to the long-term survival of the community The Rise of Agriculture o Humans most likely “backed into” farming In Southwest Asia (Middle East, present-day Northern Iraq), people came upon cereal grains (wheat and rye, maybe)—providing a tasty, good source of energy The best ones that are the best grown where (yuck) they poop out the seeds that they’ve already eaten (not where they grow wild) Someone figures that you can take the seeds and plant the seeds themselves—not just poop them out This process takes generations—not just one Happened completely independently in 7 or 8 different places o Farming is a much easier way to obtain calories, versus hunting and gathering o Many also began domesticating animals Dogs first Sheep and goats next o Agricultural villages were abundant—you could find one every night if you were walking Flax and linen became popular, as did wool and animal skins for clothing Pottery began to emerge o Sexual division of labor is similar Peyton Robison HIST 1010 Fall 2015 Dr. Melissa Blair Week 1 Women began having a lot more babies Steadier access to calories, food; made it easier for mothers and children to develop Children were an economic benefit on a farm—labor Gender relations Scholars point to this time as being when patriarchy (men dominating community) began o Skeletal evidence of women having more health problems than men—arthritis, hurt bones from farming, etc. Others argue that because of the importance of farming, women were very important—farming was just hard work o Social hierarchies did definitely develop Evidence in graves Some were buried with stuff Most people were simply buried—just the body Summing Up Beginning in the distant past, species from the genus homo developed and evolved in Africa Two such species, homo erectus and homo sapiens eventually left Africa and spread out across much of the Earth’s landmass Homo Sapiens (modern humans) had language, and eventually developed agriculture, both of which contributed to the growth of the species and the creation of society and culture Peyton Robison HIST 1010 Fall 2015 Dr. Melissa Blair Week 2 August 25, 2015 River Civilizations I. Rise of Mesopotamia a. Politics and Religion b. The Geography of Daily Life II. Old Kingdom Egypt a. Politics and Religion b. The Geography of Daily Life III. New Territorial States a. Causes of Transition b. Reorganization of Old Societies: Egypt and Mesopotamia c. New Players: Hittites d. Interaction among Societies c. 1400 B.C. Today’s Questions What were some of the similarities between early Mesopotamia and Egyptian cultures? What were some of the factors that created those similarities? What about the difference? What caused these communities to transition? How did these communities interact as they reformed and new actors came onto the scene after about 2000 BCE? Mesopotamia—Sumerian people o Geographic, agricultural forces Mesopotamians into urbanization Euphrates and Tigris Rivers are very unpredictable with flooding—rough o First cities in Mesopotamia around 3900 BCE in the southern part of the valley, known as Sumer o Very fertile soil helps facilitate a surplus of food for Sumerians Surplus was good because they could trade for stone or trees or jewels, etc. that they did not have Trade is a central part of their lives In a very good location for trade of natural resources and things that they need By around 3500 BCE, there are several independent city-states A city-state is an autonomous city; the city is the governing structure Mesopotamia is not a unified nation, but is made up of dozens (hundreds?) of city-states They had the same language and shared certain cultural forms, but were governed independently—had their own government Each had its own resident god o Polytheistic religion o Each town had its own temple; temple to that resident god o God lived in their city-state Peyton Robison HIST 1010 Fall 2015 Dr. Melissa Blair Week 2 o “Everyone exists to serve the gods,” specifically their god o Temple was at the heart of every Sumerian city and was physically dominant of the town Served as the location for everything important going on in that city-state Temple priests are at the top of the social hierarchy Most responsible for seeing that the needs of the city’s gods were being met Organized the labor of everyone in the city- state and directed the flow of goods First written system emerged to keep track of trade among city-states o So, so crucial to growth of complex societies o As a result, scribes came about to work with priests and with other city-states o Not everyone was literate As palaces came about, temples remained religiously and economically central o Palace became center of military and administrative roles As a normal citizen, you lived in the shadow of the temple and city-states were very hierarchical 1 tier: kings, priests, scribes, etc. nd 2 : cooks, gardeners, supervisors, jewelers, weavers, etc. 3 : employees, working for others but not slaves (the largest tier) o Changing social status was not impossible but was uncommon A household would be made up of an extended family all living together Eldest male was the head of the household Monogamy was the norm and was ideal, but husband could take a mistress or adopt in order to have a male heir o “Patrilineal” society, where descent and inheritance was traced through the male line Sons inherited equal shares of father’s estate; daughters received dowries at their marriage Women in these city-states were doing less farming and doing more food preparation and clothing production o Women are more geographically tied to the household Contributes to declining women’s status and a less- valued position in society Egypt—much more isolated that Mesopotamia o The nature of the flooding of the Nile lead the Egyptians to believe that the whole world was a benevolent place Great agricultural feature; soil was great and Nile flooded predictably o Isolation of Egypt led them to be a very unified society Not as urban as Mesopotamia Peyton Robison HIST 1010 Fall 2015 Dr. Melissa Blair Week 2 Mostly a collection of farming villages o Although the pyramids were there and were great, people did not live in the shadow of them; it was not the focal point of their daily lives o The Egyptian pharaohs (kings) were believed to be the living incarnation of god The primary role of the pharaoh was to maintain balance and order throughout the kingdom Responsible for making sure that the world stays on an even field Pyramid complexes highlight the political and religious beliefs in Egypt Demonstrate a very sophisticated way of organizing their people o Impressive amount of raw power o Egyptians also believed (like Mesopotamians) that each town had a specific god that resided there All of these societies began to decline and fall apart because the globe was beginning to enter a climate change—everything was a lot drier and hotter than before o Extended period of drought stopped a lot of agriculture and put a lot of pressure on the societies o The overall population doesn’t decline, but everyone starts to spread out o New kingdoms and leaders begin conquering new land and new ways of interacting with their neighbors Egypt gets a lot bigger, and Mesopotamia becomes much more unified Hammurabi’s Code His reign is credited with the first set of written laws anywhere on the globe Builds a more rational state—a very specific set of rules that everybody can see and is held to o Not just doing things “because the gods said so” o Becomes a more stable place o The Hittite Kingdom Ruled from a capital called Hattusa Ruled for several centuries and understood their kings to be agents of the gods Hittite kings were also the chief priest to the most powerful Hittite god Economy was based on farming, livestock, and most importantly, trade Trade is vital to knitting these communities together o New development in how societies interacted with each other Evidence of diplomacy Settle disputes, negotiate trade, and communicated through writing Negotiate marriages to tie families together Short-lived peace, but still very important August 27, 2015 I. Early Aegean World II. The Indus Valley, 2400-1000 BCE III. East Asia Peyton Robison HIST 1010 Fall 2015 Dr. Melissa Blair Week 2 a. Yangshao and Longshan b. Rise of the Shang State Today’s Questions How did the Aegean, South Asian, and East Asian societies differ from their contemporaries in Egypt and southwest Asia? What did these three societies have in common with one another? What do we learn from all of this week? What are some of the ways that people organized themselves into complex societies in the distant past? Why does that matter today? Language Ability to have a specialization of labor Religion Trade Aesthetic Writing As brains are developing more, everyone is thinking about these things. Food as a prerequisite for higher order of anything. Natural human instinct independently leads us to wanting aesthetics and religion, etc. Aegean World o Minoan civilization on Crete, c2000-1500 BCE Lots of Egyptian influence Appear to be a remarkably peaceful people, perhaps because of their very isolated location No form of protection or fortresses Recovered art holds images of peace; none of warriors As a result, very easily conquered o Mycenaean civilization on mainland beginning around 100 BCE; conquer Minoans c. 1500 BCE o Map shows peak of Mycenaean influence, c. 1400 BCE Focus on warfare and very little care for aesthetic tastes Society ruled by militaristic aristocrats Still involved in a lot of trade Original identity as warriors, but after they had conquered a lot they really settled down South Asia o Population of Indus River Valley increased greatly Generating large agricultural surpluses Evidence of the middle of the millennium of urbanization and specialization of occupation o Harappan people followed practice more similar to Mesopotamia, rather than Egypt Building very large cities Peyton Robison HIST 1010 Fall 2015 Dr. Melissa Blair Week 2 o We know very little about day-to-day lives of Harappans Unable to decode writing Based on the archelogy, there is no evidence of large temple complexes or a temple priesthood Not as arranged around religion Also no artistic depictions of warfare that have survived There was a very, very effective central government that did a lot of planning Mohenjo-daro and Harappa: both cities have main streets twice as wide as the side streets, laid out on a grid, and evidence of an underground drainage system Private homes were also built around a uniform size Evidence that some people were wealthier than others—grave sites Suggests a certain amount of social equality o We know very little about how the Harappan society declined—around the same time as Egyptian and Mesopotamian societies fell o Pastoral Nomad Migration, c. 1700 BCE (Hittites to Turkey, Vedic people to Pakistan) Following wild game into more densely settled areas Vedic people moved into India/Pakistan What we know about them comes from the Rig Veda manuscript— hymns and art, etc. Appear to have come in and conquered the remnants of Harappan society Great example of “how we know what we know” o Comes from the Rig Veda as its source o Written in about 400 BCE Way after the events actually happened Not the account of what happened, when it happened Possible that some stories got a little warped over time Vedic language most likely absorbed some words from the indigenous Harappan language o Evidence of cultural “mixing” China o Neolithic China, showing Yangshao & Longshao Cultures, c. 4000-2000 BCE o Around Yellow and Yangzhi River Valleys, agriculture emerged independently “Slash and burn” agriculture Once a field was no longer producing well, and their fields were exhausted, they would burn it, pack up their entire villages, and move to another agricultural spot o Complex society, but we know very little about them, but we know a lot about their successors—the Longshan Thrived in the 2000s BCE Much larger geographic reach Peyton Robison HIST 1010 Fall 2015 Dr. Melissa Blair Week 2 Distinctive black pottery that is all over the settled agricultural regions of China Figured out silk production Had a global monopoly on silk production for millennia—very cool trade good o Around 1600 BCE, the Shang era in China begins Built on remnants on Longshan society Big geographical overlaps Described as evolution of previous societies Like the Minoans, they seemed to be pretty comfortable in their power—they had fortresses, but there was no capital and they liked to travel around a lot They didn’t see themselves as conquerors Shang ruler got power from lineage o Ability to communicate and receive advice from both the gods and the ruler’s ancestors Society was organized around families One male head at the top of that lineage He would be in charge of the family and the town (the town was just family) Arranged marriages, etc. At least a thousand towns o The very first Shang leader was a lord under the previous leaders, saw him as ineffective, and took over o Big emphasis on divination; ability to read oracle bones o Seen as more of a religious leader than a political one o Lots of power, evidenced by huge amounts of Shang Bronzes, similar to the construction of pyramids in Egypt Takes a lot of time and effort to get copper and tin out of ground and to actually make them Peyton Robison HIST 1010 Fall 2015 Dr. Melissa Blair Week 3 September 1, 2015 I. Zhou China (1045-256 BCE) a. Rise of the Zhou b. An Era of Chaos: Spring and Autumn and Warring States Periods c. Innovation in Chaos: Tech and Philosophy of the late Zhou Era II. Assyria (c. 910-625 BCE) a. The Sea Peoples b. The Neo-Assyrian Empire Today’s Questions What were some of the key attributes of Zhou society? What’s the relationship between the political upheaval of the Warring States period and the philosophical and technological developments of the time? How is that similar to or different than the Assyrian experience? How did Zhou and Assyrian leaders organize their territories? What do you think accounts for those differences in political organization and structure? The Shang Dynasty Shang rulers did not exercise direct control over many aspects of Chinese society or territory o Could not command labor In 1045, the Zhou attack and defeat the Shang rulers o A vassal state of the Shang A semi-autonomous group that owed its loyalty to the Shang leadership, but they were responsible for defending the Western boundary of Shang territory, so they maintained their own army o Held power for most of the first millennium The Zhou had an incredibly durable idea of government o Shang leaders had been at the head of their lineage and created their ancestors, etc., the Zhou got their power from the gods (The Mandate of Heaven) Stated that the gods chose the ruling family in China and that that family had to behave morally, in keeping with what the gods would want, in order to maintain power If they were no longer behaving morally, the gods would bring up a new family to replace them th Kind of sounds like the Divine Right of Kings (of European monarchs) around 16 century, which stated that a particular family had been uniquely blessed and ordained by God and was the birthright of the first-born son, but it is ABSOLUTELY NOT—don’t get them confused; there is no emphasis on the behavior of the ruler, as there is in the Mandate of Heaven) o The Zhou are one of the several that come up with a new way of governing Peyton Robison HIST 1010 Fall 2015 Dr. Melissa Blair Week 3 They did not assert themselves militarily, rather they followed a decentralized system of breaking it up into territories and assigning families to administer those territories The religion, language, and culture held China together o Drawbacks of the Mandate of Heaven: Possibility that those in charge could decide that rulers are not behaving morally, and after that little to nothing could save that dynasty Day to day life was very hierarchal o What we know about ordinary people comes from the Book of Songs In the mid-700s BCE the Zhou are challenged with an upheaval by several of their vassal states o Begins the Spring and Autumn period Putting together alliances and trying to consolidate power After this period, the Zhou are hardly in control o The Warring States Period begins Marked by an extraordinary amount of violence A key component of how a ruler kept power in this era? Directing violence toward others Rulers still had roles of religious leaders o Also had a relationship to violence through animal, and sometimes human, sacrifice that only rulers can sanction Their monopoly on the sanctioning of violence helped them keep their power in this era A time of tremendous technological and philosophical advances Chinese farmers were not only using plows, but plows tipped with iron and pulled by oxen Weeding with iron hoes o Relationship between technological and warring: The Iron Age Needed new uses in military Agricultural purposes came as a result of this Fields became more productive Philosophical: Confucius (Scholar) o Begins writing during early Warring States Period, but doesn’t become influential until after that period o Every person in society has a role that they are supposed to perform o Through education, people could be taught their correct role and the correct way to perform it o If everyone performs that role as they are supposed to, society will be in harmony o Emphasized the idea of conforming to roles o “If princes do what they’re supposed to do, society will do the same and just run on its own” o Emphasized each individual’s perfectibility Peyton Robison HIST 1010 Fall 2015 Dr. Melissa Blair Week 3 The Neo-Assyrian Empire (Southwest Asia) “Sea People” really start wreaking havoc, coming in and doing serious damage to almost all of the complex civilizations in the Mediterranean o Important because attacks lead to the collapse of periods of diplomacy and a thriving region of trade o Economic flourishing is damaged by Sea People’s attacks o New states are able to arise The Neo-Assyrian Empire o Because Assyria was more inland, they were able to rebound more quickly after the Sea People attack o Once they rebuild internally, the kings begin asserting themselves brutally over the large territory o They are the first society to use mounted cavalry (soldiers on horseback) in their military, but no saddles or stirrups Huge advantage over other territories o They subdivided territories, just like in China o The first real and proper empire that we know of—a collection of diverse peoples being ruled by one nation of a single ethnic or national state o When they conquered a new territory, they forced the people there to move to Nineveh to do manual labor Brought people of lots of different backgrounds into contact with each other— cultural exchange o King of Babylon comes and conquers almost all of the territory that Assyria once held (Assyrian empire only lasted about 300 years) September 3, 2015 NO CLASS Peyton Robison HIST 1010 Fall 2015 Dr. Melissa Blair Week 4 September 8, 2015 I. The Structure of Society a. Governing Options i. Sparta ii. Athens b. Military and Warfare c. Women and Slaves II. The Culture of Athens a. Role of Religion b. The Philosophers: Plato vs. Aristotle Today’s Questions How did the political structure of ancient Greece, and especially Athens, shape other aspects of life in those city-states? What was daily life like for Athenians? What similarities and differences do you see between the ancient Greeks and the other first millennium societies we’ve talked about? Ancient Grecian Geography o Many islands o Mountainous o Led to the emergence of governmental city-states Each is an independent political entity Not a unified government Governing City-States o Some chose a singular ruler to govern their city-state o Oligarchies (a small number of rich people) were also popular, particularly early on o Starting in 600 BCE, Sparta and Athens begin new ways of governing Sparta Was a government and a society based on military service Extremely hierarchical—helots, free non-citizens, then citizens (similar) o All similar men had to go through full-time military training from a young age o In their 20’s they would join a military group and serve in the military for their entire life o Literacy was pretty unimportant—most schooling went into military, physical training Not open to discussion and debate—used military to suppress domestic uprisings o Social hierarchy is enforced by military o Very structured, very rigid society Peyton Robison HIST 1010 Fall 2015 Dr. Melissa Blair Week 4 Archaelogy shows us that Spartan homes were not elaborate, and they all looked the same Material goods were very sparse o Maintains an equality among the similars, not among everybody Citizen women’s duty was to raise sons o Spartan girls got a lot of physical training, too, so that they could push and train sons Athens All the power only belongs to the free male citizens Deomokratia: direct democracy open to all male citizens—governing body known as the Assembly o It was not a representative democracy, but a direct democracy Every single male citizen was eligible to have a voice and a vote on everything o The Assembly met several times a month Business of the Assembly were prepared in advance by the Council of 500 500 citizens who were selected by lottery (not voted for) A new Council of 500 was selected annually Very hierarchical society—slaves (chattel slavery), free non-citizens, citizens Valued discussion and debate among male citizens o Rhetorical (speaking) ability was highly prized in Athens Some orators were paid for their services Judge and Jury Panel o 100 people, also selected annually by lottery No police force, no central registry of land ownership or citizenship o Disputes over any legal case were resolved based solely on testimony o Athens was not unpoliced, however Everybody has a role in maintaining the system Athens did have an army, but it was just a part-time job o Warfare was a central part of Greek life Military and Warfare o Greeks are innovative The Phalanx—marching into opposing army with shields drawn in a row o The Peloponnesian War Daily Life o Women and Slaves Slavery A common practice in the ancient world (the rule, not the exception) Peyton Robison HIST 1010 Fall 2015 Dr. Melissa Blair Week 4 A majority of Greek citizens owned at least 1 slave o Slaves made up about a quarter of the population in Athens A few philosophers argued against slavery, but not many Athens practiced “chattel slavery”—slaves could be bought and sold by individuals, and legally were treated no differently than any other kind of possession or property o Slave families in Athens had no legal status Slave owners could separate families whenever they wanted to—and they did o No judicial rights for slaves They could testify in legal cases, but only if that testimony was arrived at through torture (the only way they knew it was truthful)—was very rare, but it was the law o Violence toward slaves could be prosecuted by other citizens, but slaves could not do so Citizens brought charges if they thought the owner was threatening society o Illegal to kill a slave—violated moral code of Athenian community o Female slaves were domestic slaves (cooking, cleaning, etc.) o Male slaves labored in a huge range of occupations in Athens Agricultural work Miners in the silver and lead mines just to the south of Athens Very hard work Life expectancies here were very short Furniture makers Metal workers Traders o Enslaved people in Athens were POWs (most common cause of enslavement), criminals, debtors (practice was eliminated in Athens in the 590s BCE--practice in regional slave trade became prominent after this point) Most came from modern-day Turkey and modern-day Bulgaria Spartan slaves were the “helots” o “Category between slaves and non-citizens” They were not chattel slaves (owned by individuals) They were owned by the Spartan state and were tied to the land o Responsible for providing food for all of Sparta Peyton Robison HIST 1010 Fall 2015 Dr. Melissa Blair Week 4 o Having a large group of unfree people to take care of food supply freed up the similars to train militarily o Being a helot was inherited The purchase of freedom was few and far between You could get out of being a helot through military service, and were freed after service (but not to become a similar) o Kept under control by military Staged public massacre of helots to discourage uprising and rebellion, especially during Peloponnesian War Women (Athens) Main role in Athenian society was to serve the state by having children, especially sons o Marriage and motherhood were central duties o Vast majority of adult women married o Under the guardianship of men (fathers, and then husbands) Very few independent legal rights o Could not press charges or make a legal complaint on their own o Had to go through husband o If her husband dies, then she is assumed to be under the protection of son or other male relative If no clear guardian for a widow, a magistrate from the judge and jury panel would appoint someone to be her guardian Could not own property o If there was no direct male heir to an estate and a woman’s father dies, the estate passes to his daughters (if they are not married) and then to the husband (once she is married) o Marriage between cousins was common in order to keep wealth in family Dowries were extremely important o Equivalent to family’s economic status o There to provide for the economic well-being of the woman, to support her and her new family Husbands could not sell off land without wives’ permission, if land was involved If couple was to divorce, the dowry or the equivalent amount was guaranteed back to the woman Divorce was not unheard of o Either spouse could initiate o In practice, wives almost never initiated the divorce Father, brother, etc. had to intercede and speak to husband on her behalf Peyton Robison HIST 1010 Fall 2015 Dr. Melissa Blair Week 4 Magistrate had to agree to hear the case o If you’re the husband, you just have to kick her out of the house and give her the divorce, and it’s over Children belong to father o Women married quite young (average age 14), men about 30 (average) o Likely to have multiple marriages and widows Elite women supervise work of female domestic slaves o Enslaved women cooked and clean, elite women usually child- reared Non-elite women in Athens are having to go out and find ways to financially support their families (as seamstresses, wash women, etc.) o Not ideal o Women should be in the home o Looked down on; marked them as non-elite o Athenian Culture Ancient Greek Religion Polytheistic, the gods seem unreliable and uninterested in humans (interested in themselves) o Lived on Mount Olympus o Seen as quarrelsome and unreliable o Ancient Greek life was marked by festivals and devotion to gods o Each Greek city-state had a patron god Some had multiple special gods o Worship consisted of sacrifices, patronages, etc. Philosophical Scene Flourished because of its democratic structure o No priesthood or conformed religion In Athens, plenty of public debate on all sorts of topics Building on Ionian roots, Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle leaders in development of natural philosophy: a method of both scientific and moral inquiry based on the belief that the laws governing nature, including human nature, can be discovered through logic, reason, or observation Plato tends more towards the logic side, Aristotle more to the observation side—but they are points on the same spectrum of thought o E.g. “What is a tree?” Aristotle: branches, leaves, bark, physical observations Plato: the sense you get by being near a tree, the essence of a tree, vague language—large, provides shade, etc. Society values rhetorical work Affected area of art Peyton Robison HIST 1010 Fall 2015 Dr. Melissa Blair Week 4 o Trying to understand how the human body works and what it’s made up of o Very diverse culture incorporating culture September 10, 2015 I. Alexander and the Building of the Hellenistic World II. Hellenism in Action a. Spreading Greek Culture b. Ptolemaic Egypt: A Case Study Today’s Questions What did it look like to live in the Hellenistic world if you were an elite? What might you hear and see around you? So what? Why does the spreading of Greek-based culture throughout this large region matter to the course of world history? The Hellenistic World Covers a lot of the same territory as the Persian Empire, but is different in how culture functions o Assumes that there is a common culture, at least among elites Alexander the Great o Tutored by Aristotle o Father was King Phillip II of Macedonia When Phillip came to throne, he tried to make Macedonia more Greek Very authoritarian ruler Begins expanding his realm when Alexander was a teenager o Inherits huge kingdom at age 20 and almost immediately begins expanding it exponentially In 9 years, he conquered all of (map on right) that territory (all of Persian empire) He wanted to continue, but his troops literally refused o Settles in Babylon as emperor of huge land o Marries a princess from Bactria o Died Alcoholism? Heat? Malaria? Was NOT a political assassination—pretty unusual for his family His troops adored him Wife and infant son executed and generals carve up the empire into the Hellenistic States Hellenistic Kingdoms Peyton Robison HIST 1010 Fall 2015 Dr. Melissa Blair Week 4 o One of Alexander’s goals was to create an empire centered in Mesopotamia in which he is the sole ruler o Explicitly connected himself to ideas of divine monarchy o However blending it with Greek cultures among the elites o Massive building program of brand new cities throughout the empire Taking Greek culture and putting it in the empire Alexandria in Egypt o A form of Greek was spoken by the elites Majority language in Tolia (modern-day Turkey), but never in Egypt o Large number of Greek immigrants (most non-elite) o In the realm of religion, blend E.g. Goddess Isis—Greek goddess, Egyptian goddess Ptolemaic Egypt o Cleopatra was the last ruler o A hybrid state blending ancient Egyptian traditions and Greek economies o Egyptian influence: Ruler and sons do a lot of pharaoh imagery o Common currency for massive amounts of trade o Alexandria is capital Exhibits Greek culture So what? o Interconnectedness more than through trade, but by culture and language o Hellenistic world at the elite level culturally the same o Sense of common identity builds the framework along which other ideas can pass
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