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

Undergraduate Course: After Alexander (ANHI10056)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of History, Classics and Archaeology CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 10 (Year 3 Undergraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryAlexander's conquest of the Persian Empire was an extraordinary achievement, bringing under Macedonian control territory as far east as Afghanistan, but what happened next? This course focuses on the world Alexander created but did not live to see; historians call it the 'Hellenistic World'.
Course description A series of wars between Alexander's generals divided Alexander's empire into three powerful kingdoms, based in Macedon, Syria, and Egypt. The former subjects of Persia now found themselves ruled by Greco-Macedonian kings. But it was not simply a change of ruler. Greeks arrived in their thousands to inhabit these newly-acquired territories, living in the new Greek cities founded by Alexander and his successors, centres of Greek culture in an alien land.
In exploring the Hellenistic World we will be concentrating especially on the years from the death of Alexander down to the end of the third century and ranging over the whole eastern Mediterranean. The course would be expected to cover some or all of the following themes: 1. Alexander and his legacy; 2.The Successors; 3. The Ptolemies and Egypt; 4. The Seleucids and Asia; 5. Macedon and Greece; 6. Kings and ruler cult; 7. Cities (esp. Alexandria); 8. Celtic invasions; 9. Ethnicity; 10. Women and Families; 11. Literature and Patronage; 12. Art and Power; 13. Philosophical Schools. The course is informed by the course organiser's own research on the Hellenistic world and fits well with 'The Greek World and Rome'.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites It is RECOMMENDED that students have passed Ancient History 2a: Past and Present in the Ancient World (ANHI08014) AND Ancient History 2b: Themes and Theories in Ancient History (ANHI08013)
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements A pass in Ancient History 2A and 2B or at the discretion of the course organiser.
Information for Visiting Students
Pre-requisitesVisiting students should usually have at least 3 courses in Classics related subject matter (at least 2 of which should be in Ancient History) at grade B or above (or be predicted to obtain this) for entry to this course. We will only consider University/College level courses.
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Not being delivered
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. demonstrate, by way of coursework and examination as required, command of the body of knowledge considered in the course;
  2. demonstrate, by way of coursework and examination as required, an ability to read, analyse and reflect critically upon relevant scholarship;
  3. demonstrate, by way of coursework and examination as required, an ability to understand, evaluate and utilise a variety of primary source material;
  4. demonstrate, by way of coursework and examination as required, the ability to develop and sustain scholarly arguments in oral and written form, by formulating appropriate questions and utilising relevant evidence;
  5. demonstrate independence of mind and initiative; intellectual integrity and maturity; an ability to evaluate the work of others, including peers.
Reading List
Austin, M. The Hellenistic World from Alexander to the Roman Conquest (2nd ed. 2006).
Erskine A. (ed.) A Companion to the Hellenistic World (pb. ed. 2005).
Giovannini, A. 'Greek Cities and Greek Commonwealth' in A.W. Bulloch etc. (ed.) Images and Ideologies: Self-definition in the Hellenistic World (1993), 265-86.
Shipley, G. The Greek World After Alexander 323-30 BC (2000).
Stewart, A. Faces of Power: Alexander's Image and Hellenistic Politics (1993).
Hölbl, G. A History of the Ptolemaic Empire (2001) .
Habicht, C. Athens from Alexander to Antony (1997).
Sherwin-White, S. and Kuhrt, A. From Samarkhand to Sardis: a new approach to the Seleucid Empire (1993).
Strootman, R. After the Achaemenids: Court and Elites in the Hellenistic Empires, c. 330-64 BCE (2014).
Carney, E. Women and the Macedonian Monarchy (2000).
Ogden, D. (ed.) The Hellenistic World: New Perspectives (2002).
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Not entered
KeywordsAfter Alexander the Great
Course organiserProf Andrew Erskine
Tel: (0131 6)50 3591
Course secretaryMiss Katherine Perry
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