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

Undergraduate Course: Early Farmers of the Near East: The Transition from Foraging to Agriculture (ARCA10072)

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
SummaryThis course provides a forum for studying the
transition to early farming communities in the Near
East from the late epi-Palaeolithic until about 5000 BC.
The main issues and theories surrounding the
technological, social, economic and cognitive
developments that marked the transition to settled
farming village communities in the Near East are
explored. Some of the debates and thinking about this
important development in human histroy are also
Course description Week 1: introduction and discssion
Week 2: theoretical approaches to the transition to farming
Week 3:environmental and biological considerations
Week 4:Natufian Culture
Week 5: early sedentism and the exploitation of plant/animal resources
Week 6:Pre-Pottery Neoltihic A and case studies
Week 7: a revolution in symbols and cognitive developments
Week 8:Pre-Pottery Neoltihic B and case studies
Week 9: the spread, collapse and transformation of neolithic societies
Week 10: Pottery Neolithic and case studies
Week 11: overview
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
Pre-requisitesVisiting students should have at least 3 Archaeology courses at grade B or above (or be predicted to obtain this). We will only consider University/College level courses.
Course Delivery Information
Not being delivered
Learning Outcomes
Upon completion of this course and by way of participation in the seminars, the production of the
coursework and by examination students will be able to:
-demonstrate an understanding of: (i) key concepts and issues surrounding the topic of the
transition to agriculture, (ii) deep time and chronological frameworks, (iii) aspects of the nature of
the human relationship with the environment, (iv) aspects of human cognitive development,
-produce a sound, properly referenced and cogently argued piece of writing
-demonstrate, through student presentations and discussions, the ability to engage with peers and
to communicate their ideas effectively.
-demonstrate an ability to read archaeological sources in a critical manner and to construct a
reasoned argument using archaeological material.
Reading List
-Adams, R. (ed.) (2008) Jordan: an archaeological reader, London: Equinox Publishing.
-Akkermans, P. and G. Schwartz (2003) The Archaeology of Syria: from complex hunter-gatherers
to early urban societies (ca. 16,000-300 BC), Cambridge World Archaeology Series, CUP.
-Cauvin, J. (2000) (trans T Watkins) The Birth of the Gods and the Origins of Agriculture, New
Studies in Archaeology Series. CUP.
-Levy, T (ed.) (1998) The Archaeology of the Holy Land, London: Leicester University Press
-Lewis-Williams, D and D. Pearce (2005) Inside the Neolithic Mind, London: Thames & Hudson.
-Ian Hodder (1990) The Domestication of Europe
-Aurenche, O. and J. Cauvin. 1989 Nťolithisations. BAR Int Ser 516. Oxford: British
Archaeological Reports.
-T. Douglas Price & A. Gebauer (1995), Last Hunters, First Farmers: New Perspectives on the
Prehistoric Transition to Agriculture. Sante Fe: School of American Research Press.
-Kuijt. I. ed. (2000) Life in Neolithic Farming Communities. Social Organization, Identity, and
Differentiation. London.
-÷zdoan, M. and N. Bagelen eds. (1999 ) Neolithic in Turkey. Istanbul: Arkeoloji ve Sanat
-E. Peltenburg and A. Wasse (eds) (2004) Neolithic Revolutions. New perspectives on southwest
Asia in light of recent discoveries on Cyprus, Levant Supplementary Series 1,
- Cappers, R. and S. Bottema eds. 2002 The Dawn of Farming in the Near East.
-Gebauer, A. and T. Douglas-Price. 1992 Transitions to Agriculture in Prehistory. Monographs in
World Archaeology 4. Madison (WI): Prehistory Press.
-D. Harris, (1996)The Origins and Spread of Agriculture and Pastoralism in Eurasia. London: UCL
Press Ltd.
-During, Bleda (2010) The Prehistory of Asia Minor: from complex hunter-gatherers to early urban
societies, Cambridge University Press.
-Hodder, Ian Religion in the Emergence of Civilisation: Catalhoyuk as a case study, Cambridge
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Not entered
KeywordsNot entered
Course organiserDr Gordon Thomas
Tel: (0131 6)50 2383
Course secretaryMs Amanda Campbell
Tel: (0131 6)50 2501
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