Archaeology of Greece and the Near East Syllabus

Archaeology of Greece and the Near East  (CC-261)
Spring 2012 – Tues-Fri 11.00 am – 12.15 pm ~ McDermott 201

In this class we will study the archaeology and art history of ancient Greece and the Near East (Asia Minor in the ancient world) from the  Minoan through the Hellenistic Period (ca. 1,700 BCE – 100 BCE), to explore how material and physical evidence shapes our understanding of the past. We will study the archaeological, architectural, and artistic remains of ancient Greece within their historical and cultural framework.

Instructor: Kristina Chew, Ph.D. ~ Associate Professor of Classics ~ Dept. of Modern & Classical  Languages & Literatures ~ Hillsdorf Hall (51 Glenwood Avenue), Room 203 ~ Saint Peter’s College ~ Tel. 201.761.6295 ~ Email. ~ Website: https://pavovox.wordpress.comOffice Hours: Monday, Wednesday: 10 am – 1pm.

Course Goals and Objectives
By the end of this course, the student will have achieved the following:

  • A knowledge of the art and architecture of these periods, including their production, consumption and display.
  • A knowledge of core concepts and terms from archaeology and art history.
  • A knowledge of ancient Greek history from the Minoan to Hellenistic periods.
  • Understanding of the problems and issues (economic, political, cultural and other) that archaeologists face in accessing sites, conducting excavations, protecting sites and artefacts, and communicating their findings to both the scholarly world and the public more generally.
  • Familiarity with various Internet resources for the study of ancient Greece and Rome, archaeology and art history.


Both of these books are required. You will not be able to pass this class without reading both books (and we will read both books in their entirety).

  1. William R. Biers, The Archaeology of Greece, 2nd edition (Ithaca: Cornell University Press 1996).
  2. Peter Drewett, Field Archaeology: An Introduction, 2nd edition (New York: Routledge 2011).

***Please check the professor’s website, daily for all homework and other assignments, links to online resources, and information about the class.

***Other technologies used will be films (from online sources and DVDs) and computer presentations.

Class Participation and Homework ~ 20%
1 research/interpretative essay, short writing assignments~ 25%
Oral Presentation ~   25%
Mid-term ~ 15%
Final exam ~ 15%

(subject to change at the instructor’s discretion)

Week 1: January 20: What is archaeology? How does it help us understand the past? Read: Archaeology Meets Politics in the Arab Spring and Biers, ch. 1, “Archaeology in Greece.”

Week 2: January 24:  Biers, ch. 1, “Archaeology in Greece”; Janary 27: Drewett, ch. 1, “Introduction”

Week 3: January 31: Biers, ch.2, “The Minoans”; February 3: Drewett, ch. 2, “What is an archaeological site?”

Week 4: February 7: Biers, ch. 3, “The Myceneans”; February 10: Drewett, ch. 3, “Finding an archaeological site”

Week 5: February 14: Biers, ch. 4, “The Dark Ages”; February 17: Drewett, ch. 4, “Recording archaeological sites”

Week 6: February 21: Biers, ch. 5, “The Geometric Period”; February 24: Drewett, ch. 5, “Planning the excavation”

Week 7: Feburary 28: Biers, ch. 6, “The Orientalizing Period”;    March 2: Review for Midterm

Week 8: March 6MIDTERM March 9:  Biers, ch. 7, “The Archaic Period”; Drewett, ch. 6, “Digging the site”

**March 12 – 16 SPRING BREAK**

Week 9: March 20: Biers, ch. 8, “The Fifth Century”; March 23: rewett, ch. 7, “Recording archaeological excavations”

Week 10: March 27: Biers, ch. 8, “The Fifth Century”; March 30:

Week 11: April 3: Biers, ch. 9, “The Fourth Century”  **April 6, Good Friday / no class **

Week 12: April 10: Biers, ch. 10, “The Hellenistic Age”; April 13: Drewett, ch. 8, “Post-fieldwork planning”; ch. 9, “Interpreting the evidence”

Week 13: April 17, 20: Presentations; Drewett, ch. 10, “Publishing the Report”

Week 14: 24, 27; Presentations; Reading TBA

Week 15: May 1, 4; Presentations, Review

May 8. Tuesday. Reading Day

May 9 – 15  Final Examination Period

Class Participation and Homework
This course will be taught in a seminar/lecture format. Students are expected to have prepared all assignments (reading, writing, and presentations) before coming to class;  to be prepared to engage in thoughtful discussion; to answer questions concerning the assigned readings. There will be daily homework assignments.

Writing Assignments/Essays/Oral Presentations
There will be one 5-7 page research/interpretative essay; one 10-15 minute oral presentation; one project (which will require you to create a detailed plan to preserve and promote an archaeological site; you will have the choice of writing a paper or giving a presentation about your plan).  There will also be occasional short (1 page) writing assignments on specific topics.

  • You will be required to make specific reference to sources (the two required textbooks, additional secondary sources)in your essays.
  • Essays and all written assignments are due at the start of the class on the due date.
  • Essays may be submitted in hard copy format (i.e. printed out on paper) or via email.
  • I am glad to discuss your essay with you prior to your writing it and will read rough drafts (either in hard copy format or sent via email) if you get them to me at least three days before the due date (i.e., if a paper is due on a Tuesday, the last date that I will read a draft is Saturday evening).

Midterm and Final
These exams will require you to (1) identify archaeological and art historical terms and concepts in short answer format; (2) respond to essay questions.

Plagiarism Policy
Plagiarism is the stealing, purchasing, or copying of someone else’s ideas, writing, or other original work and using them as one’s own. Plagiarism, intentional or unintentional, is considered academic dishonesty and all instances will be reported to the Office of the Academic Dean. Plagiarism and cheating of any kind are not tolerated under any circumstances.

Attendance Policy
Students are permitted no more than four absences after which they are in danger of failing the course. After missing two consecutive classes, you must contact the professor by email or phone to provide an explanation of your absence and a plan for making up all missed work. After three absences, an Early Warning form will be sent to the Academic Dean, who will ask you to meet with her in person to discuss the reasons for your absences and your commitment to the class. Lateness to class (more than two times) will count as an absence.

• If you are absent, it is your responsibility to contact the instructor and to check the professor’s website to find out the assignment for the next class meeting.
• Always bring the following to class: our textbook, a notebook, and a pen or other writing implement.
• Students will help to make this class a community by being courteous and committed members of the class, speaking frequently and thoughtfully in class discussions, and collaborating in frequent group work with one or two other students.

Accommodations for students with disabilities

The College will make reasonable accommodations for students with documented disabilities. Any student with a documented disability needing academic accommodations is encouraged to speak to the instructor as soon as possible, to ensure that such accommodations are implemented in a timely fashion.

Electronic devices in the classroom

  • The use of cell phones or other communication devices during class is disruptive; please set your ringer to “mute” or “vibrate” during class.
  • If you wish to use your computer, phone or other device to take notes, please inform the instructor about this at the very start of the semester.
  • Texting, emailing, etc. during class will lower your participation grade.

About kristinachew

classicist | translator (of ancient Greek & Latin poetry & drama) View all posts by kristinachew

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