This topic provides and introduction to the Bronze Age in Europe, Africa and Asia, and first urbanised states of the Americas. Bronze Age is a critical period for the development of ancient civilisations characterised by the invention of writing, urbanism, administrative and legislative systems and hierarchy, developments of international trade routes and monumental infrastructure as well as progress in technology, science (including first attempts at astronomy and medicines) and arts. For many the sheer mention of 'archaeology' immediately conjures the images of Sphinx, Minoan Frescoes, Sumerian tablets, Mayan Pyramids or Aztec temples - all of them constructs of this period. The aim of the topic is to present a global overview of this important period in different parts of the world through the analyses of social and cultural processes that led to initial development of urbanised societies so prevalent in our modern world. Throughout this topic students will look at a number of case studies of great ancient cities and compare them to the construct of the city in different periods of history.
This topic aims to: