Courses for Spring 2024

General Information About Courses

AAMW course numbers are crosslisted with departmentally based courses. Not all courses of relevance to AAMW students have AAMW numbers. Potentially relevant courses can be found in the rosters from the departments and programs in the History of Art, Ancient History, Anthropology, Classical Studies, History, Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations, Religious Studies, Architecture and Historic Preservation. In addition courses may be taken for Penn credit at Bryn Mawr and Princeton. Advanced students may also request to take a specialist course at other universities in commuting range. If the professor teaching the course agrees, the AAMW Graduate Chair will give the class a Penn Independent Study number, and transcribe the grade received.


Title Instructors Location Time Description Cross listings Fulfills Registration notes Syllabus Syllabus URL
AAMW 5120-401 Petrography of Cultural Materials Marie-Claude Boileau Introduction to thin-section petrography of stone and ceramic archaeological materials. Using polarized light microscopy, the first half of this course will cover the basics of mineralogy and the petrography of igneous, metamorphic and sedimentary rocks. The second half will focus on the petrographic description of ceramic materials, mainly pottery, with emphasis on the interpretation of provenance and technology. As part of this course, students will characterize and analyze archaeological samples from various collections. Prior knowledge of geology is not required. ANTH5211401, CLST7311401
AAMW 5252-401 Late Antique Art and Artifact Seminar Ann L Kuttner WILL 217 T 1:45 PM-4:44 PM What is 'Late Antiquity'? In 312 when Roman emperor Constantine inaugurated a Christian empire, 'Roman' culture was centuries old. The period ca. 200-650 CE saw profound transformations that launched Medieval, Byzantine and Islamic traditions. In this epoch of upheaval destruction was frequent but partial: Rome long survived, Constantine's 'new Rome,' Constantinople flourished, and around the Empire both proto-global visual culture and local forms prospered. Roman cultural models authorized both innovation and passion for tradition: we critique art-historical models for Late Antique 'decline', analyse habits of material reuse and curation, and look at new Christian and Jewish roles for Roman things as well as polytheist visual survival. Foreign allies and enemies interacted with Greco-Roman Late Antiquity; we visit them too, as in the early Islamic palaces. Media discussed include not just 'monumental' painting, mosaic, sculpture, but also silver, ceramic, ivory, figural textile, glass, painted books, jewelry, coins and more. We look too at Late Antique texts on art, objects, space and viewership. This seminar is open to graduate and undergraduate students. ARTH5252401, CLST7405401
AAMW 5280-401 Hellenistic Cities Seminar Mantha Zarmakoupi JAFF 104 M 5:15 PM-8:14 PM A new form of city and of urban life developed and spread during the Hellenistic period. The new political social and economic conditions resulting from the victories of Alexander the Great and the emergence of the Macedonian kingdoms deeply affected civic life and form. Hellenistic cities were not independent poleis but subject to absolute monarchs and were open to all residents regardless of their geographical origins. Civic life assumed a cosmopolitan character and the urban setting became an arena for the propaganda of the Hellenistic rulers. This course will examine the architectural and urban developments of the Hellenistic period together with central political institutions and religious and social practices that were associated with them. In studying a diversity of visual, material and textual evidence—such as urban form, architectural and sculptural monuments, as well as literary sources and epigraphic evidence—the course will address both the structure of the urban fabric and the socio-political situation of the Hellenistic polis. The purpose of the course will be to shed light on the principles of urban planning as well as the realities of civic life in the Hellenistic period. ARTH5280401
AAMW 5500-401 Archaeologies of Subalternity Kimberly Diane Bowes WILL 214 T 8:30 AM-11:29 AM This course addresses the various areas and approaches to "otherness" in ancient Mediterranean archaeology, and the power dynamics of oppression. We'll not only examine disempowerment around cultural identity, class, gender and sexuality, and race/ethnicity, but we'll spend equal time pondering how those subjects have been studied - or ignored - by classical archaeologists. The power relationships both inherent in the subjugation of various kinds of people in the ancient world, and in the academic discourses around them, are the themes of the course. While this course will be focused on the Bronze Age through late antique Mediterranean, those with other period/interests are most welcome. Students will be asked to bring their own interests to the course, which help shape the course. Upper-level courses in archaeology, anthropology, or ancient history are recommended prior to enrollment. CLST3317401, CLST5317401
AAMW 5520-401 Archaeometallurgy Seminar Vanessa Workman MUSE 190 F 8:30 AM-11:29 AM This course is designed to provide an in-depth analysis of archaeological metals. Topics to be discussed include: exploitation of ore and its transformation to metal in ancient times, distribution of metal as a raw materials, provenance studies, development and organization of early metallurgy, and interdisciplinary investigations of metals and related artifacts like slag and crucibles. Students will become familiar with the full spectrum of analytical procedures, ranging from microscopy for materials characterization to mass spectrometry for geochemical fingerprinting, and will work on individual research projects analyzing archaeological objects following the analytical methodology of archaeometallurgy. ANTH5252401, CLST7314401, NELC6950401
AAMW 5570-401 Archaeology of Landscapes Mark T Lycett MUSE 419 R 10:15 AM-1:14 PM Traditionally, archaeological research has focused on the "site" or "sites." Regional investigation tends to stress settlement pattern and settlement system determined through archaeological site survey. This seminar will stress the space between the sites or "points" on the landscape. Most previous attempts at "landscape archaeology" tended to focus on the relationship of sites and the natural environment. This course will highlight the cultural, "anthropogenic," or "built environment"--in this case human modification and transformation of the natural landscape in the form of pathways, roads, causeways, monuments, walls, agricultural fields and their boundaries, gardens, astronomical and calendrical alignments, and water distribution networks. Features will be examined in terms of the "social logic" or formal patterning of cultural space. These can provide insights into indigenous structures such as measurement systems, land tenure, social organization, engineering, cosmology, calendars, astronomy, cognition, and ritual practices. Landscapes are also the medium for understanding everyday life, experience, movement, memory, identity, time, and historical ecology. Ethnographic, ethnohistorical, and archaeological case studies will be investigated from both the Old and New Worlds. ANTH5570401, LALS5570401
AAMW 5720-401 Geophysical Prospection for Archaeology Jason Herrmann MUSE 190 M 1:45 PM-4:44 PM Near-surface geophysical prospection methods are now widely used in archaeology as they allow archaeologists to rapidly map broad areas, minimize or avoid destructive excavation, and perceive physical dimensions of archaeological features that are outside of the range of human perception. This course will cover the theory of geophysical sensors commonly used in archaeological investigations and the methods for collecting, processing, and interpreting geophysical data from archaeological contexts. We will review the physical properties of common archaeological and paleoenvironmental targets, the processes that led to their deposition and formation, and how human activity is reflected in anomalies recorded through geophysical survey through lectures, readings, and discussion. Students will gain experience collecting data in the field with various sensors at archaeological sites in the region. A large proportion of the course will be computer-based as students work with data from geophysical sensors, focusing on the fundamentals of data processing, data fusion, and interpretation. Some familiarity with GIS is recommended. ANTH5720401, CLST7315401, NELC5925401
AAMW 6269-401 Classical Myth and the Image Ann L Kuttner JAFF 113 MW 3:30 PM-4:59 PM The peoples of the ancient Greek and Roman worlds shared a vast body of stories about human and not-human beings set in a legendary deep past or supernatural present - "Classical myth." Even their neighbor cultures took up those stories (or, sometimes, gave them). The stories as spoken, read, or performed turn up in surviving ancient literature. But from the very point when Greek myth began to be written down, those stories were told with images also. Many arts of the Mediterranean world explored myth at temples and sanctuaries, in civic spaces, theaters, parks, houses and palaces, for tombs and trophies - and even on the body upon weapons, clothes and jewelry. Love and desire and hate, hope and fear and consolation, war and peace, pleasure and excitement, power and salvation, the nature of this world and the cosmos, justice and duty and heroism, fate and free will, suffering and crime: mythological images probed the many domains of being human in order to move the emotions and minds of people (and of gods). Our class samples this story art to ask about its makers and viewers and contexts. What, also, were relations between images and texts and language? What about religious belief vs invention, truth vs fiction? What might it mean to look at this ancient art today, and to represent the old stories in post-ancient cultures? The class introduces ways of thinking about what images and things do; we will read in some relevant literature (drama, epic, novels, etc); and our Penn Museum will be a resource. No prerequisites--no prior knowledge of art history, archaeology, myth or Mediterranean antiquity is assumed. ARTH2269401, ARTH6269401, CLST3416401, CLST5416401
AAMW 6460-401 GIS for the Digital Humanities and Social Sciences Emily L Hammer PCPE 201 TR 1:45 PM-3:14 PM This course introduces students to theory and methodology of the geospatial humanities and social sciences, understood broadly as the application of Geographical Information Systems (GIS) and spatial analysis techniques to the study of social and cultural patterns in the past and present. By engaging with spatial theory, spatial analysis case studies, and technical methodologies, students will develop an understanding of the questions driving, and tools available for, humanistic and social science research projects that explore change over space and time. We will use ESRI's ArcGIS software to visualize, analyze, and integrate historical, anthropological, and environmental data. Techniques will be introduced through the discussion of case studies and through demonstration of software skills. During supervised laboratory sessions, the various techniques and analyses covered will be applied to sample data and also to data from a region/topic chosen by the student. ANTH1905401, NELC1905401, NELC6900401
AAMW 8000-003 Pedagogy Peter T. Struck Pedagogy
AAMW 8000-004 Pedagogy Josef W Wegner Pedagogy
AAMW 9950-039 Dissertation Mantha Zarmakoupi Dissertation