Archaeology of Ancient Egypt (CLAS/ARTH 2029)
Weekly Online Study Questions:
At the end of most lectures, I will pose a thought-provoking question to the class. These questions will require contemplation and analysis, but right or wrong answers will not be readily apparent. A synthesis of your readings, lecture material, and critical thinking must be executed in order to construct a response. D2L will randomly choose one of 3 or 4 questions for which you must construct a response in 30 minutes. Each response will be worth 5% of your final grade for a total of 15%.
Online Response #1
Week 1: From what you’ve learned in your readings and lecture, what makes the study of the Predynastic Period of Egypt so difficult? As you read your texts, what topics, assertions, theories, and statements do you find speculative, unwarranted, or weak? Are there any topics or theories upon which you totally disagree? Why?
Week 2: In lecture, we’ve mostly examined how Egyptian culture, art, and architecture was developed in Upper Egypt during the early periods of ancient Egyptian history. How is Egyptian culture developing in Lower Egypt? Is it the same or different? Why or why not? How does it or does it not differ? Why might this be the case?
Week 3: Who built the Sphinx? When? Why?
Online Response #2
Week 4: Based on lecture and your readings, in what ways do Middle Kingdom art and/or architecture differ from what you examined in the Old Kingdom? Are there thematic changes or is it purely a stylistic shift? What do we learn about life and kingship through the art of the Middle Kingdom that may or may not indicate a shift in the pathos and ethos of the Egyptian Empire?
Week 5: In what ways do 12th Dynasty pyramids differ from those of the late Old Kingdom? In what ways are they reminiscent? Why do you think this is the case?
Week 6: Can we, or should we, distinguish between Nubian, Hyksos, and Egyptian art? Is one source influencing the other two? Is there a benefit to compartmentalizing the art of the Middle Kingdom and Second Intermediate Period in this way? Or are we essentially doing what Bernal did in his “Black Athena” argument?
Week 7: The transition from the Second Intermediate Period to the Early New Kingdom (18th Dynasty) marks a shift in international relations. How have international relations changed in the early 18th Dynasty? More importantly, how are these “changes” depicted in art and architecture? How do patrons depict the lands and peoples of those conquered? How are those conquered affecting Egyptian architectural forms?
Online Response #3
Week 8: How would the establishment of Akhetaten, and the relocation of the capital, affect the Egyptian Empire? Politics? Warfare? Why?
Week 8 – Part II: What “message” is conveyed by rulers of the 19th and 20th dynasties? Consider their activity abroad, their artistic representations, and the structures they built? Would you consider their military endeavors offensive for the purpose of aggression and dominance or offensive for the purpose of defense?
Week 9: Should the art, architecture, and culture of the 3rd Intermediate and Late Periods be considered and/or labeled Egyptian? Why or why not?