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Origins of Great Ancient Civilizations (The Great Courses: Ancient History #3174)

3.81  ·  Rating Details  ·  73 Ratings  ·  12 Reviews
12 lectures, 30 minutes/lecture, 6 Audio CDs in vinyl case.

Course Lecture Titles
1. Cradles of Civilization
2. First Cities of Sumer
3. Mesopotamian Kings and Scribes
4. Hammurabis Babylon
5. Egypt in the Pyramid Age
6. The Middle Kingdom
7. Imperial Egypt
8. New Peoples of the Bronze Age
9. The Collapse of the Bronze Age
10. From Hebrews to Jews
11. Imperial Assyria
12. The Persian E
Published (first published July 8th 2013)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 137)
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Evan Hays
Jul 03, 2012 Evan Hays rated it it was amazing
Shelves: general-history
An excellent concise history of the ancient civilization of the near east and the regions near that. I will keep returning to this when I need a refresher on Ancient History to help my AP World History students.

Kenneth Harl is really just excellent. This is now the third lecture series by him that I have listened to/read, and his style is very conducive to learning a a lot and being interested all at the same time. He has a unique background to do this because he has been a teacher for very long
Aug 02, 2014 Jim rated it it was amazing
Shelves: tgc, history
This is a review of a 12 lecture (30 minutes each)in video format, presented by Dr Ken Harl.
I really cannot add much to the great reviews (mostly on the Great Courses website)...Serene Thought really put the course into the proper perspective (though I don't share some of his/her conclusions). Dr Harl presents an outline of just a small part of the cultural development during the earliest formative years of human civilization. Human evolution has exploded during the last 50-70,000 years, with r
Travis Mueller
May 17, 2016 Travis Mueller rated it liked it
An interesting series, but I find that I retain rather little of it; I think I've been binging on ancient history too much and it is all blurring together a bit. It did leave me with a clearer impression of the succession of empires in ancient Mesopotamia, and I should probably find some more material on then in particular.
David Williams
Apr 16, 2015 David Williams rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a really great lecture series. It is a wonderful introduction into the history of the Ancient Near East. Highly recommended!
Esther Dan
May 26, 2015 Esther Dan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Great study on Turkey and the surrounding nations
Frederick Frankenstein
A solid history of some of the wide human migration, geographical, and political changes of the ancient time. Events are viewed based on mostly archaeological findings while there is still some narrative relied on by ancient text- for the most part mythology and mysticism is not explored.

The video lecture is very well presented and should be consumed this way. The realtime graphs are helpful to show the changes in the region and of historical relics are displayed.

Coursebook is 100pages.
Jul 01, 2015 Vincent rated it liked it
This guide accompanied the Teaching Company course of the same name.

It was well presented and explained and I got much out of it but did not have enough foundation to get as much from the parts that I was less familiar with. - so for the parts on the Hebrews and Greeks I understood better and learned more.

Worth the time. Additional review and readings maybe later
May 25, 2009 Jessica rated it it was amazing
This course takes you from Bronze Age civilizations in 3500 B.C. to the Persian Empire in 500 B.C. The lecturer is engaging and the lectures carry through on themes of writing, political organization, the technology of war, and commerce. I wish I had had instructors like Dr. Harl in college.
Jul 09, 2015 Kara rated it liked it
Review of three ancient civilizations based on river valleys the Indus, the Tigris & Euphrates, & the Nile. Doesn't talk much about the Indus, but does a good job with the Sumerians.
Aug 04, 2013 Rustin rated it liked it
History of Egyptians, Mesopotamians, Assyrians and others. The invention of writing by the Sumerians allowed technology advances to be recorded. This began the advance of technology.
Nov 26, 2012 Elizabeth rated it liked it
12 audio lectures, and a course book. Very interesting. A little too detailed in some areas -- names, places, etc. Overall -- a great overview course.
Feb 22, 2013 Dayla rated it really liked it
Shelves: ancient-history
Dr. Harl is very learned, but he is a little dry. But still, very smart. I just had a hard time getting through to the end of this series.
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Dr. Kenneth W. Harl is Professor of Classical and Byzantine History at Tulane University in New Orleans, where he teaches courses in Greek, Roman, Byzantine, and Crusader history. He earned his B.A. from Trinity College and his M.A. and Ph.D. from Yale University.

Recognized as an outstanding lecturer, Professor Harl has received numerous teaching awards at Tulane, including the coveted Sheldon H.
More about Kenneth W. Harl...

Other Books in the Series

The Great Courses: Ancient History (1 - 10 of 37 books)
  • The Barbarian Empires of the Steppes
  • Great Ancient Civilizations of Asia Minor
  • Between the Rivers: The History of Ancient Mesopotamia
  • Ancient Empires before Alexander
  • The History Of Ancient Egypt (Great Courses, #350)
  • Ancient Greek Civilization (Great Courses, #323)
  • The Persian Empire
  • Alexander the Great and the Macedonian Empire
  •  Alexander the Great and the Hellenistic Age
  • The History of Ancient Rome (Great Courses, #340)

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