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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of History, Classics and Archaeology : Archaeology

Undergraduate Course: The Prehistory of Cyprus: Insularity, Identity and Internationalism (ARCA10078)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of History, Classics and Archaeology CollegeCollege of Humanities and Social Science
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 10 (Year 3 Undergraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryTo provide an integrated approach to the archaeology
and prehistory of ancient Cyprus in its eastern
Mediterranean context.

Cyprus is at the crossroads between the Ancient Near
East and Europe. It has been subject to influences
from the Levant, Anatolia, Egypt, and Greece. In spite
of these impacts, the island┐s cultures remained highly
distinctive, like so many other ancient island societies
in contact with nearby cultures and civilisations. This
course investigates the dynamics of Mediterranean
island identity as expressed through the study of
material culture recovered by archaeologists in
Cyprus. It deals with periods from the first sedentary
farmers to the creation of the first cities of Bronze Age
Cyprus. During this chronological span Cyprus was, at
times, at the centre of developments and changes
throughout the region and at other times it was insular
and unique. One of the themes in these dedicated
studies is the propensity of islanders to select and
adapt external influences, often for the construction of
elite identities.
In addition to these major educational aims, the
emphasis of this course concerns what archaeologists
can say about the contexts of archaeological data and
sites, and how the integration of these leads to an
enriched understanding of preliterate and early literate societies.
Course description Week 1: Introduction (environmental background, chronological overview)
Week 2: First arrivals, island archaeology, palaeofauna
Week 3: The Cypro-PPNA and B and the eastern Mediterranean world
Week 4: Insularity, identity and community during the Neolithic
Week 5: Ceramic studies and figurative art
Week 6: Site formation processes and the built environment
Week 7: Cultural change and technological development in prehistory
Week 8: Funerary archaeology
Week 9: Village and town development during the Bronze Age
Week 10: Secondary state formation, internationalism and trade
Week 11: The emergence of local elites and the first cities
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements Pre-requisites: Archaeology 2A and 2B, or Honours entry to degrees in Classics, or equivalent.
Information for Visiting Students
Course Delivery Information
Not being delivered
Learning Outcomes
┐ Knowledge of the material cultures, regional contexts and chronological frameworks of Cypriot
┐ An understanding of archaeological theory, methods and practices relevant to the acquisition
and interpretation of archaeological data.
┐ The ability to source, analyse and interpret archaeological material within the context of their
own independent research
┐ The ability to produce a well-researched piece of written work on an archaeological topic
relevant to the course.
┐ The ability to construct and sustain an archaeological discussion with their peers and tutors
Reading List
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills ┐ Research skills and reading of large amounts of material
┐ Writing and general literacy skills
┐ Initiative and independence and an ability to manage their own time and of working to defined
objectives within strict limitations of time and/or resources.
┐ The ability to find, extract, organise and evaluate information from primary and secondary
┐ The ability to appraise evidence and criticise a reasoned argument; correspondingly, the ability
to construct a reasoned argument, support it with relevant evidence, and communicate it
appropriately and persuasively.
┐ The ability to carry out independent research; to design a research programme, to formulate
and test hypotheses through the collation of existing data and/or the generation of new
information and to communicate their own findings and conclusions in a compelling fashion
KeywordsPrehistory of Cyprus
Course organiserDr Gordon Thomas
Tel: (0131 6)50 2383
Course secretaryMs Amanda Campbell
Tel: (0131 6)50 3782
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