300-level courses

CAS AR305 Paleolithic Archaeology
Introduction to the emergence of culture and the reconstruction of early lifeways from archaeological evidence. Topics include early humans in Africa, Asia, and Europe; Neanderthals; the first Americans; and the prelude to agriculture. (Course fulfills department topical requirement.)

CAS AR 307 Archaeological Science
Prerequisite: AR101 or consent of instructor. Natural sciences (biology, chemistry, geology) form an integral part of modern archaeology and are applied to issues of dating, reconstructing past environments and diets, and analysis of mineral and biological remains. Laboratories concentrate on biological, geological, physical and chemical approaches.  Lecture and Lab.  (Course fulfills department requirement.) This course is only offered in the Fall semester.


CAS AR322 Ancient Aztec and Inca Civilizations
The conquests, trades, society, history and religion, art and architecture of the ancient Aztec and Inca empires in Mexico and Peru, as revealed archaeologically and in the accounts of their Spanish conquerors.  (Cross-listed with AH322 and GRS AR722).  (Course fulfills department area requirement.)

CAS AR323 Maya Art and Architecture
This course introduces the styles and iconography of Maya sculpture, painting and architecture from Preclassic origins on the epi-Olmec Gulf coast, and the southern coast and highlands of Guatemala; then north into the south and central lowlands and the Classic Period florescence at Tikal, Copan, and Palenque, followed by the architectural innovations of the North, the hybrid grandeur of Chichen Itza, and finally the “international style” at the peripheries of the Classic Maya regions (AD 100-1400).   (Course fulfills department area requirement.)

CAS AR330 Greek Archaeology
Archaeology in Greek lands from the Iron Age to the first century BC; aims and methods of Classical archaeology; correlations with anthropology, art history, history and literature. (Course fulfills department area requirement.)

CAS AR331 Etruscan and Roman Archaeology
Cultural evolution on the Italian peninsula from the early Iron Age to the fall of Rome (1100 BC to AD 476). Origins and developments of Etruscan civilization; Italic peoples and the rise of Rome; Roman religion, economy, arts, architecture, and social and civic institutions. (Course fulfills department area requirement.)

CAS AR332 Greek and Roman Cities
Follows the development of urban centers in the Greco-Roman world from the Late Bronze Age through the Roman period. Topics include state formation, urban architecture and infrastructure, public and private buildings and monuments, and social dynamics of urban culture. (Course fulfills department area requirement.)

CAS AR 335 Mystery Cults in the Graeco-Roman World
Lectures and discussions on the evolution and nature of mystery cults in the Graeco-Roman World from the 7th c. BC to Late Antiquity. The course will be concerned with the rituals, belief systems, iconography, and sanctuaries of select cults, including Demeter and Kore, Dionysus, Cybele and Attis, Isis, the Syrian deities, and Mithras. Evidence will be drawn from archaeology, art history, literature, and inscriptions. (Course fulfills department area or topical requirement.)

CAS AR337 The Wine Dark Sea: Material Culture and Individual Identity in the World of Homer
This course examines the interconnected cultures of the eastern Mediterranean from the Late Bronze Age (c. 1400–1200 BCE) through the Achaemenid period (c. 5–4th C. BCE), with a focus on the material correlates of identity. (Course fulfills department area requirement).

CAS AR338 Mare Nostrum: Material Culture and Individual Identity after Alexander
This course examines the interconnected cultures of the eastern Mediterranean from the era of Alexander the Great (4th century BCE) through the Roman emperors period (c. 2nd-3rd centuries CE), with a focus on the material correlates of identity.  Meets with GRS AR738. (Course fulfills department area requirement).

CAS AR341 Archaeology of Mesopotamia
An overview of the core area of the ancient Near East from the introduction of agriculture to the Hellenistic era. Emphasis will be on the genesis of urban society and its transformation under the Sumerians, Babylonians, Assyrians and Persians.  Meets with GRS AR741.  (Course fulfills department area requirement.)

CAS AR342 Archaeology in the Holy Land
In Israel, archaeology is part of current events. We study remains from the Israelite to the Moslem conquests (c. 1200 BCE – 640 CE) to learn how material evidence created and still plays a role in a larger historical drama.  Meets with GRS AR742.  Cross lists with CAS RN390/690 & STH TX815.  (Course fulfills department area requirement.)

CAS AR343 Anatolian Archaeology
An historically oriented survey of the material remains of the ancient cultures of Turkey and northwest Iran from the Neolithic to the Hellenistic Period. Emphasis is on the Hittite Empire and civilizations that succeeded it in the first millennium. Meets with GRS AR743. (Course fulfills department area requirement.)

CAS AR 345 Introduction to Archaeological Field Methods: Getting the Context Right
Prerequisite: CASAR101 or consent of instructor. Acquaints students with some basic techniques used in modern archaeology prior to a full field school experience. Hands-on field and laboratory work, as well as examples from the literature, illustrate the techniques and concepts employed in the course.

CAS AR346 Seminar: The Archaeology of Ancient Egypt
Examines the prehistoric and early historical origins of ancient Egyptian civilization, major institutions of the culture, and culture changes through time. Major topics such as changing socio-political organization, demography and the economic system, and beliefs/religion will be studied.  Meets with GRS AR746.  (Course fulfills department area requirement.)

CAS AR347 Egypt and Northeast Africa: Early States in Egypt, Nubia and Eritrea/Ethiopia
This course focuses on early states in northeast Africa, in Egypt, Nubia, and Eritrea/Ethiopia.  Comparative analyses include socio-economic institutions, kingship, burial practices and religions of these early states, concentrating on archaeological as well as textual evidence.  Meets with GRS AR747.  (Course fulfills department area requirements.)

CAS AR 348 Gods, Graves and Pyramids: Ancient Egyptian Religion and Ritual
The ancient Egyptians created monumental evidence of their belief systems, relating to both state religion and the mortuary cult. This course examines ancient Egyptian religion from the evidence of tombs, both royal and private, as well as the temple – all of which evolved over the course of 3,000 years of the pharaonic state. Additionally, hieroglyphic texts associated with these monuments will be studied in translation. These texts not only greatly expand what is known about ancient Egyptian beliefs, but also the rituals that were practiced within Egyptian temples and tomb complexes. The purpose of this course is to provide a better understanding of the beliefs of the ancient Egyptians, from their origins in Predynastic and Early Dynastic times to the development of the great temple complexes in the New Kingdom and later, based on a broad synthesis of the data: archaeological, architectural and textual.

CAS AR353 Urbanism in Ancient Mesoamerica
Prerequisite: AR100, or AR101, or consent of instructor.  Comparative study of ancient Mesoamerican cities, including the Aztecs, Maya, and their predecessors, focusing on urban functions, cosmological symbolism, and development over time (ca. 1000 BC – AD 1500).  (Course fulfills department area or topical requirement.)

CAS AR360 The Indus Valley
Course focuses on the archaeological evidence for antecedents of the Indus Civilization and cultural processses leading to its climax and decline (3000-100 BC). Involves in-depth study of socio-economic, political and religious complexities of its organization, technology, settlement patterns, architecture, subsistence, inter-regional trades and relationships with contemporary civilizations. (Course fulfills department area requirement.)

CAS AR370 Archaeology of Colonial America
Introduction to the archaeology of American life in the Colonial Period. A consideration of the material culture of early America, including architecture, artifacts, complete sites, and the use of archaeology to confirm or modify the written record.  Meets with GRS AR770.  (Course fulfills department area requirement.)

CAS AR371 Archaeology of Post-Colonial America
The archaeology of America from the Revolution to the present. Deals with the social history, industry, and the material culture of recent and modern Americans.  Meets with GRS AR771.  (Course fulfills department area requirement.)

CAS AR372 Archaeology of Boston
Boston’s buried history revealed through excavated artifacts and features. Tours of archaeological laboratories, Boston’s neighborhoods, burying grounds, waterfront, and Harbor Islands. “Big Dig” finds in Charlestown, Mill Pond, North End; Fanueil Hall, Blackstone Block, Boston Common, and Paul Revere House. Meets with GRS AR772.  This course is usually offered in the summer.  (Course fulfills department area requirement.)

CAS AR375 Oral History and Written Records in Archaeology
A practical introduction to the use of archival and oral sources in text-aided archaeology; surveys the use of oral and documentary sources by archaeologists, giving attention to the type and scope of documents-defined in the broadest sense-available. Critical analysis of documents as a step in constructing anthropological history, historical ethnography, and the “new culture history” as well as the interaction of history, anthropology and material culture studies in historical archaeology. Meets with GRS AR775.  (Course fulfills department topical requirement.)

CAS AR381 Introduction to Paleoethnobotany
Introduces the method and theory of the study of the uses of plants by humans derived from evidence presented in the archaeological record, the relationship between humans and their environment, and the relationship between the environment, and the Archaeological record. Laboratory sessions concentrate on identification, and a Project using Archaeological samples. Lecture and Lab.  Meets with GRS AR881.   (Course fulfills department technical requirement.)

CAS AR382 Zooarchaeology
Introduction to archaeological analysis of animal bones. Provides a basis for the use of faunal remains in the investigation of paleoecology, analysis of archaeological site formation histories, and techniques for interpreting human subsistence activities.  Lecture and Lab.  (Course fulfills department technical requirement.)

CAS AR390 The Archaeology of Southeast Asia
Examines the prehistoric and historic cultures of Southeast Asia, including the first arrival of humans, regional neolithic and Bronze Age communities, early states, maritime trading networks, as well as political motivations in archaeology and the illicit Asian antiquities trade. Meets with AR790. (Course fulfills department area requirement.)

CAS AR393 Out of the Fiery Furnace: Early Metallurgy of the Pre-industrial World
Technology is a central part of the human experience, and the development of metallurgy stands out as one technology that was mastered by some cultures, and virtually ignored by others. This course explores all aspects of the development of copper, bronze, gold, silver, iron, and other metals among the prehistoric and early historic cultures across Asia. By first providing an understanding of the technical aspects of mining, smelting, casting, alloying, and finishing, the course then looks at this technology within a much broader context, examining its varied roles and impact in the ritual, military, symbolic, and economic aspects of these cultures. Its prominence in the modern antiquities trade is also examined, as is its manipulation as a potent tool in modern nationalistic debates.  Meets with GRS AR793.  (Course fulfills department topical requirement.)

CAS AR396 Cultural Heritage and Diplomacy
Course considers place of heritage in archaeology and cultural diplomacy; art architecture as cultural ambassadors; culture representation in museums and cultural landscapes; international art law; cultural affairs in U.S. embassies; the State Department; strategic impact of heritage in promoting U.S. foreign policy.  Cross listed with CAS IR396/796 meets with GRS AR796.  (Course fulfills department topical requirement.)