The Role of Religion in Ancient Civilizations
Topics include the establishment of patriarchal civilizations, Mesopotamian and Egyptian religion, and the early civilizations of Northwest India. Students also learn about the religions of ancient China and Japan, traditional African religions and belief systems, religion and burial in Roman Britain, and the great temples of Meso-American religions. The final selections are devoted to early Christianity, the Byzantine Empire, and Islam.
Original introductions place the readings in context. Taken as a whole, these carefully curated articles demonstrate both the uniqueness of each religion and the traditions and practices that, over time, became interconnected and sometimes even fused to form new religions. The Role of Religion in Ancient Civilizations is well-suited to survey courses in world and ancient religions, as well as classes on religious history and the history of the ancient world.