History 1113 - Fall 2000

Early World History, Prehistory to 1400

Room: 3006
Section 2570: MWF, 9-9:50 a.m.

Instructor: Doug Catterall

Office: West Hall, 217 N Office Hours: MWF, 11 a.m.-12 p.m. & 1-2 p.m.
TTh, 1-3 p.m. and by appointment

work telephone: 581-2949
home telephone: 536-7950
e-mail: dougc@cameron.edu

Goals and Approach:

As its title suggests, the purpose of this course is to give you a broad background in world historical events that unfolded from the emergence of human beings as a species to the early 15th century, the era in which human societies began to link the globe together using the world's oceans. I intend the course to familiarize you with the big picture while at the same time giving you the opportunity to look at some societies in depth.

Obviously with a task so large at hand and only one semester to work with, we will need some organizing principles and main themes to guide us. The most central concept in this course is that of culture. Rather than nations or peoples (though we will use these terms as well), this course emphasizes thinking about societies in terms of what people at all levels of all societies have done and do every day to get on. Thus while we must not and cannot ignore events, we will look at events in the context of a culture's development, rather than simply studying the events for their own sake. To understand past cultures in this course we will do two things: 1) look at how they developed practices and institutions to sustain themselves (traditions) and 2) examine their response to problems and their relationships with other cultures and peoples (i.e. their place in the world). Though we will quite literally cover the world in this term, we will give most of our attention to the places where most of the world's peoples were interacting: Eurasia and Africa.

In addition to learning about past societies and how they worked, the purpose of this course is also to teach you some skills that historians (and many who are not historians such as lawyers, doctors and computer scientists) use all the time: critical thinking and critical reading; writing and effective oral communication; and interpretation.

Ideal Environment:

The heart of the class-room environment (for me) rests in enthusiasm, respect and openness. This may sound general, so I will elaborate. Enthusiasm means a persistent willingness to tackle the problems that come up in the readings and assignments for each week. It does not mean that everyone always has to show up happy and cheerful, but readiness to make a contribution to class is a must. Respect in the classroom means valuing each person's participation, not because their ideas are the best (although you might think so), but because they are trying to make a contribution to the group. Openness lies in the freedom for people to express their thoughts and opinions, which includes scope for debate and disagreement with me or anyone else. The closer we approach this ideal environment, the more the classroom will be an effective space for clarifying, making manageable and even experimenting with the issues confronted in the course. This ideal may not always be achievable, but in my view we should always strive for it.


Course work consists of four elements: participation in discussion and class activities, occasional informal writings, formal writings, and essay-based examinations.


a. Preparation: In order to understand the lectures and participate in class discussions and other activities you will need to do the assigned readings. Please budget time to complete readings for the date in which they appear in the assignment and reading schedule. The readings are in three forms, which are listed below.


Jerry Bentley and Herbert Ziegler, Traditions and Encounters: A Global
Perspective on the Past, Volume I: From the Beginnings to 1500 (Boston:
Macgraw Hill Publishers, 2000)

Primary Sources and Other Materials:

Ancient Egyptian Literature, Volume II: The New Kingdom, translated by
Miriam Lichtheim (Berkeley, CA: University of California Press, 1976)

Sima Qian, Records of the Grand Historian, translated by Burton Wilson
(New York: Columbia University Press, 1993)

The Poem of the Cid, translated by Lesley Byrd Simpson (Berkeley, CA:
University of California Press, 1957)

Supplementary Readings (indicated with the following phrase and symbol:
Supplementary Reading*)

Finally I will link sources and helpful web sites to the online syllabus and ask
you to analyze these. Please note, that where a ** appears next to a web-site
address (URL) the site in question may not be in the public domain and you may
be in violation of copyright if you download and print off pages from the site.

All of the above readings will be required for the course and (with the exception of the online materials and the supplementary readings) are available at the CU bookstore. The textbook by Bentley and Ziegler will give an overview of course themes and is essential reading to gain a sense of the basics. The three longer source readings, which are primary sources, will be central to the short formal essays that are an essential part of this course. With a few exceptions all other source materials will be available at the following web-site: www.fordham.edu/halsall, an internet site that provides a variety of internet source-books. Feel free to explore the site if you wish.

b. Discussion: This may seem like a small thing and something unrelated to the real stuff (passing the exams e.g.). I want to stress, though, that participation in discussion will count in your grade. I will gauge participation on a daily basis with a check, check-plus, check-minus system.

c. Informal Writings: Occasionally I may assign short writing exercises to help focus our discussions. Informal writing will also be graded with a check, check-plus, check-minus system and include comments.

d. Reading Questions: Every other week one half of the class will be responsible for submitting 2 questions to me via e-mail at the beginning of the week. These questions should be based on the readings for that week and I will then structure some of our class time around them. If you want to know what group you are in for submitting questions or what weeks you are meant to submit questions click on the hypertext here.

e. Credit for Participation: Informal writing(s) and class discussion will be worth 20% of the final grade.

Reaction Papers:

You will have to write three reaction papers in this course on the following works: Ancient Egyptian Literature..., The Records of the Grand Historian, and The Poem of the Cid. Each of these papers will count for 15% of your grade for a total of 45%. General guidelines for the papers will be available by clicking the hypertext in this sentence. You can access specific guidelines for each of the three projects by clicking the hypertext highlighted titles you see immediately above.

Examinations and Quizzes:

There will be four quizzes worth 15% of the final grade and a final examination worth 20% of the total grade. The quizzes, which will entail analytical writing, will increase in complexity and in value as the term progresses (quiz 1: 2%, quiz 2: 3%, quiz 3: 4% & quiz 4: 6%) and will prepare you for the final examination, which will be an essay-based examination and will be held on December 12, 2000 from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. Grading standards for all written work (including the formal writings listed above) are available by clicking the hypertext in this sentence.


Guidelines for Academic Work:

Late Papers: Late work will lose a grade per day after the set due date. Barring a serious illness or other extenuating circumstances which can be documented, there will be no exceptions to this rule.

Missed Examinations and Quizzes: As noted above, there are a number of quizzes and a final examination for this course. I want everyone to have the same chance to succeed on these, so I absolutely require that everyone not miss these without a good excuse, such as a medical emergency. I will require documentation and barring documentation you will not be allowed to sit a make-up.

Plagiarism: Plagiarism is the representation of the work of another as your own. In all of the writing you do for this course you must make clear to me which ideas in a paper are your own and which come from someone else. This is especially important for any formal essays you write. In these such essays you must cite all primary and secondary sources you use in accordance with the proper conventions. I will provide a sheet explaining the basics of citation before any formal essays come due. If for some reason you do not receive a copy of this hand-out, do not assume you will be exempt from following its guidelines as it will be available on the online syllabus. In cases of plagiarism, the Department of History and Government at CU follows the plagiarism policy in the 2000-2001 "Student Handbook," pp. 207-211. Please heed this warning.



Schedule of Readings, Lecture Topics, Assignments and Activities

From Prehistory to History: the Emergence of Human Societies

Week 1

(8/21) Introduction and Get Acquainted

(8/23) Prehistory I: The First Humans and the First Human Societies

Read: Traditions & Encounters, 1-16.
(8/25) Prehistory II: Paleolithic Culture
Read: Traditions & Encounters, 16-19.
Week 2
(8/28) Prehistory III: The First Agricultural Revolution and the Emergence of Neolithic Societies
Read: Traditions & Encounters, 19-29.
(8/30) Prehistory IV: Geography, Ecology and the Origins of the First Human Societies I
Re-Examine: Traditions & Encounters, 10-11, 22-23.
Read: Traditions & Encounters, 31-37, 79-82, 103-105 and 429-433.
(9/1) Prehistory V: Geography, Ecology and the Origins of the First Human Societies II
Read: Traditions & Encounters, 57-62.
Examine and Take Notes on One Topic (excluding the topics, "resources," "Harappa Walk," and "Mohenjo daro") on: Harrapan Web-Site
at: http://www.harappa.com/har/har0.html**
Interchange in the Ancient World, 5000 B.C.E.-500 B.C.E.
B.C.E. = Before Common Era

The Indus Valley Region

Week 3

(9/4) Labor Day

(9/6) Early Societies in India to 400 B.C.E.

Read: Traditions & Encounters, 62-77.
(9/8) The Caste System in India
Read: The Laws of Manu, Chapter IV at:
Take: Quiz #1
Mesopotamia and Ancient Egypt

Week 4

(9/11) External Threats, Empire and Expansion in Egypt and Mesopotamia
Read: Traditions & Encounters, 37-40, 50-55.
Ancient Egyptian Literature, 12-15, 29-35, 57-72.
(9/13) Comparing Law and the State in Egypt and Mesopotamia
Read: Ancient Egyptian Literature, 21-24.
Excerpts from Hammurabi's Code at:
(9/15) Economic and Social Structure in Egypt and Mesopotamia
Read: Traditions & Encounters, 40-46.
Ancient Egyptian Literature, 25-29, 135-146 and 189-193.
Week 5
(9/18) Literature and Learning in Ancient Egypt and Mesopotmia
Read: Traditions & Encounters, 46-48.
Ancient Egyptian Literature, 167-175, 197-203 and 214-223.
(9/20) Religion in Ancient Egypt
Read: Traditions & Encounters, 48-49.
Ancient Egyptian Literature, 92-96, 100-103, 107-109 and 110-114.
(9/22) Monotheism and Death in Ancient Egypt
Read: Ancient Egyptian Literature, 48-51, 119-126.
China to c. 250 B.C.E.

Week 6

(9/25) Early History
Read: Traditions & Encounters, 82-99.
Records of the Grand Historian, 9-18.
The Classical Period 500 B.C.E.-500 C.E.

China to 220 C.E.

(9/27) Philosophies of Order and Conduct in Classical China
Read: Traditions & Encounters, 153-161.
(9/29) Overview of the Qin Dynasty
Read: Traditions & Encounters, 161-166
Week 7
(10/2) Sima Qian's Chronology of the Qin Dynasty
Read: Records of the Grand Historian, 23-32, 46-83.
n.b. note down all instances where Sima Qian expresses an opinion and the nature of the opinion.
Turn In: Formal Writing #1
(10/4) The Biography of Lord Shang
Read: Records of the Grand Historian, 89-99.
(10/6) The Biographies of Bai Qi, Wang Jian and Cai Ze
Read: Records of the Grand Historian, 121-130 and 148-157.
Take: Quiz #2
Week 8
(10/9) The Biographies of Lu Buwei, Li Si and Meng Tian
Read: Records of the Grand Historian, 159-65 or 207-213, 179-206.

(10/11) The Han Dynasty and the Life of Sima Qian

Read: Traditions & Encounters, 166-177.
Records of the Grand Historian, 227-237.
(10/13) Classical Indian Society
Read: Traditions & Encounters, 177-187
The Arthashastra at: http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/india/kautilya1.html
Selected Indian Tales at: http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/india/hindutales.html
Week 9
(10/16) Religion in Classical India
Read: Traditions & Encounters, 187-197.
Web Selections:
(10/18) Greek Society and the Emergence of the Polis
Read: Traditions & Encounters, 199-217.
(10/20) Fall Break
Week 10
(10/23) Greek Politics and the Greek Mediterranean
Read: Greek View of India: http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/ancient/greek-india.html
(10/25) The World of the Greek Polis and the Roman World Compared
Read: Traditions & Encounters, 225-237.
Third Punic War: http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/ancient/polybius-punic3.html
Cicero, On the Laws: http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/ancient/cicero-laws1.html
Praise of the First Roman Emperor (focus on Virgil): http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/ancient/augustanencomions.html
Turn In: Formal Writing #2 (may also be turned in on 10/25 for full credit)

(10/27) The World of the Greek Polis and the Roman World Compared, II

Read: Traditions and Encounters, 249-272.
Take: Quiz #3
A New Global Reintegration, 500-1400

Week 11

(10/30) Roman Society, Roman Religion and Christianity
Read: Traditions & Encounters, 237-247.
Satire on Roman Women: http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/ancient/juvenal-satvi..html
and one of the following web-sources:
Immigrants in Rome: http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/ancient/martial9-3.html
The Gentleman of Leisure: http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/ancient/plinyyoung-letters3-1.html
Stoicism: http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/ancient/persius2.html
Jesus: http://ccat.sas.upenn.edu/~humm/Topics/JewishJesus/josephus.html**
(11/1) Integration and Disintegration in the Late Classical Era
Read: Traditions and Encounters, 249-272.

(11/3) The Establishment and Spread of Islam I

Read: Traditions & Encounters, 303-325 and
1) Surahs 1 & 47: http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/source/koran-sel.htmland
2) Conquest of Egypt: http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/source/642Egypt-conq2.html
or the Conquest of Spain: http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/source/conqspain.html

Look At: Islam in West Africa: http://web-dubois.fas.harvard.edu/dubois/baobab/narratives/islam/WestTrade.html**or Islam in East Africa: http://baobab.harvard.edu/narratives/islam/EastTrade.html**

Week 12
(11/6) The Establishment and Spread of Islam II
Read: Traditions & Encounters, 355-376 and
Muslim Policy for Non-Muslims: http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/source/pact-umar.html
or Life in Baghdad: http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/source/1000baghdad.html
(11/8) Christian Societies in Western Europe: An Overview and Some Evidence
Read: Traditions & Encounters, 379-396 and
1) Slavery and Serfdom in Europe: http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/source/549Orleans.html or
Early Inheritance Laws: http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/source/450allods.html or
Early Inheritance Laws II: http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/source/475Visisucc.html or
Early Justice: http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/source/ordeals1.html and
2) Conversion of Clovis of the Franks: http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/source/gregory-clovisconv.html
(11/10) The Spain of the Cid I
Read: The Poem of the Cid, Canto 1.
Week 13
(11/13) The Spain of the Cid II
Read: The Poem of the Cid, Canto 2.
(11/15) The Spain of the Cid III
Read: The Poem of the Cid, Canto 3.
(11/17) The Chinese Renaissance
Read: Traditions & Encounters, 327-347.
Take: Quiz #4
Week 14
(11/20) Nomadic Empires in Eurasia
Read: Traditions & Encounters, 407-427.
Examine: Picture of Ghengis Khan: http://academic.brooklyn.cuny.edu/core9/phalsall/images/genghis.jpg**; Picture of Kublai Khan: http://academic.brooklyn.cuny.edu/core9/phalsall/images/kublai2.jpg**; Picture of Mongol Archer: http://academic.brooklyn.cuny.edu/core9/phalsall/images/mongarch.jpg**
Turn In: Formal Writing #3
(11/22) Thanksgiving
(11/24) Thanksgiving
Week 15
(11/27) European Culture in the High Middle Ages
Read: Traditions & Encounters, 451-470 and one of the internet modules below:

Rural and Urban Life:
1) Rural Life in England: http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/source/1086Winchestermanor.html or
2) Town charter: http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/source/1127stomer.html or
Craft Gild Rules: http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/source/1233Weavers4.html or
Merchant Gild Rules: http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/source/guild-sthhmptn.htmland
3) Trade Regulation: http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/source/1249butchers1.html or
Business Contract: http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/source/1242barcelonabusagreement.html

Cluniac Monasticism: http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/source/1143clairvaux.html
The Franciscan Order: http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/source/stfran-test.html
Illuminated Manuscript of Dominican Prayer: http://www.op.org/DomCentral/places/stjude/NineWays.html**
Confession: http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/source/tales-confession.html

Heresy: http://www.sjsu.edu/depts/english/Fournier/jfournhm.htm(choose one confession)**

Gender and Sexuality:
1) Duties of Husband and Wife: http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/source/bernardino-2sermons.htmland
2) Marital Suit: http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/source/hyams-wifesues.htmland
3) Sexual Deviancy: http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/source/1395rykener.html or
Thomas Aquinas on Sexual Deviancy: http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/source/aquinas-homo.html

(11/29) How Europeans Saw the World c. 1350
Read: Traditions & Encounters, 469-475 and
1) http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/source/corvino1.htmland
2) http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/source/mandeville.html
(12/1) African States and African Peoples
Read: Traditions and Encounters, 434-449 and
either An Arab View of Africans: http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/source/860jahiz.html
or Account of Ghana: http://www.humanities.ccny.cuny.edu/history/reader/ghana.htm**

Examine:Mansa Musa's Kingdom (map): http://www.bnf.fr/enluminures/images/jpeg/i8_0000m.jpg**

Week 16
(12/4) What Did Europeans, Asians and Africans Know of Each Other?
Read: Traditions & Encounters, 501-521.
Columbus at: http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/source/columbus1.html
(12/6) Course Evaluations and Review

(12/8) Conclude Review

Final Exam Week
(12/12) Final Examination: 10-12:00 p.m.
Please note, the syllabus is subject to change if I judge that this is necessary.

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