Themes and Topics 2: State development, Empires and social life in the Near East: 6000 BCE to 300 BCE

Course content

This course will outline some of the key themes and debates from the Chalcolithic to later historical periods of the Middle East, covering the Near East and northeast Africa from the 5th to the 1st mill BCE. Proceeding chronologically, the course will cover a wide array of themes ranging from the importance of feasting in chiefdoms, state development and the origins of hierarchy to the larger empires of the later periods. The course will be taught by means of lectures, seminars and practical exercises.

The students will gain in-depth knowledge of chosen periods from proto-historic and historic archaeology and history of Southwest Asia (and to a lesser degree North Africa), and will critically examine the use of archaeological and historical data to interpret this record. Students will be able to engage with some relevant material culture in the practical exercises and use it to develop their own research questions. Completion of three short practical projects and their presentation is a mandatory course requirement. The course is taught in English.


Fagstudieordning Bacheloruddannelserne i assyriologi, nærorientalsk arkæologi og ægyptologi, 2019

Fagstudieordning BA-tilvalg i assyriologi, nærorientalsk arkæologi, ægyptologi 2019

Fagstudieordning Kandidatuddannelserne i nærorientalsk arkæologi, assyriologi og ægyptologi 2019.

Fagstudieordning Kandidattilvalg i assyriologi, nærorientalsk arkæologi, ægyptologi 2019


Learning outcome

BA 2019-studieording
Temaer og emne i nærorientalsk arkæologi 2 (aktivitetskode HNAB00201E)

BA tilvalg 2019-studieordning
Temaer og emner i nærorientalsk arkæologi 2 (aktivitetskode HNAB10351E)

KA 2019-studeordning
Archaeological Analysis (constituent for Near Eastern Archeology), (aktivitetskode HNAK03531E)

KA tilvalg 2019-studieordning
Critical Analysis of Materiel Culture (aktivitetskode HNAK13001E)

Exchange students BA level
Themes and Topics in Near Eastern Archaeology 2 (activity code HNAB10351E)

Lectures, exercises, discussion and student presentations

Teaching will be in English, and students will be expected to read literature in English

Feedback by final exam (In addition to the grade)
Peer feedback (Students give each other feedback)
Type of assessment
Criteria for exam assessment
Type of assessment
Criteria for exam assessment

Academic targets

At the examination, the student can demonstrate:

Knowledge of:

key issues and discussions within selected periods and topics in Near-Eastern archaeology, urbanisation and early formation of polity, archaeology in the media, and the past in the present at a more advanced level.

the relevant chronology for the periods discussed in more detail.

the history and geography of the relevant area at a more detailed and more analytical level.

cultural differences and their origins.

Skills in

explaining the relationship between an analytical framework and current discussions.

discussing analytically, critically and reflectively a specific issue at a more advanced level.

presenting a complex issue by means of an oral and written presentation of the subject matter.

Competencies in

researching a specific topic on the basis of a relevant research question.

communicating the results of exploration at multiple academic levels.

explaining cultural differences and their causes.



The syllabus is 1,400-1,600 standard pages, which must be apparent from the bibliography of the take-home assignment. At least 500 pages of these 1,400-1,600 standard pages must originate from the syllabus of 1,200-1,600 standard pages specified by the lecturer.


Teaching and working methods

The course comprises lectures with active student participation and practical exercises, including up to six short written assignments, one comprehensive mid-semester assignment, and an oral presentation. The students will be asked to work individually and/or in groups.


Exam provisions


Form of exam: Take-home assignment, optional subject.

Scope: 20-22 standard pages.

Assessment: Internal exam with a single examiner with assessment based on the 7-point grading scale.

Regulations for group exams: The exam can only be taken individually.

Exam language(s): Danish or English.

Materials permitted: All.

Make-up exam/resit: Conducted in the same manner as the ordinary exam.






  • Category
  • Hours
  • Lectures
  • 42
  • Preparation
  • 156,5
  • Practical exercises
  • 42
  • Project work
  • 100
  • Guidance
  • 2
  • Exam
  • 70
  • English
  • 412,5


Course number
See exam description
Programme level
Bachelor choice
Full Degree Master
Full Degree Master choice

1 semester

Se skemalink nedenunder
Study Board of Cross-Cultural and Regional Studies
Contracting department
  • Department of Cross-Cultural and Regional Studies
Contracting faculty
  • Faculty of Humanities
Course Coordinator
  • Susanne Kerner   (6-6e6875716875436b7870316e7831676e)

Susanne Kerner,
Scott Haddow,
Maximilian Holmström

Saved on the 19-04-2024

Are you BA- or KA-student?

Are you bachelor- or kandidat-student, then find the course in the course catalog for students:

Courseinformation of students