Over the years, Classical archaeology has evolved from a pastime of collectors and antiquarians to a mature science. Today, the field is a multidisciplinary effort that involves not only traditional diggers, but also geologists, geographers, anthropologists, and linguists.These 36 lectures introduce you to this fascinating field of study. Professor Hale guides you through dozens of ancient sites with the skill of a born storyteller.
The riveting narrative unfolds like a series of detective stories and provides a new perspective from which to view the world of the Greeks and Romans, resurrecting them in all their glory and affording us a better grasp of cultures that have greatly influenced our own.
A series of exciting archaeological sites that provides you with a detailed idea of what Classical archaeology entails, as well as insights into the details of ancient Greek and Roman life. These case studies - involving both famous sites and discoveries unknown outside the field - include the city of Troy, the Athenian Agora, and the Cape Gelidonya Shipwreck.
Through an analysis of these and other riveting sites, you get a superb sampling of Classical archaeology and learn how it combines ancient history, anthropology, ethnography, comparative religion, art history, engineering, historical linguistics, paleobotany, and other pursuits with a dash of Indiana Jones-style adventure.
Mysteries abound in this course, and in the end, you'll view the world of the Greeks and Romans not as a sequence of historical events but as an immense living organism; a system in which society, culture, and the natural environment interact in dynamic, creative, and sometimes destructive ways.
PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying reference material will be available in your My Library section along with the audio.
©2006 The Teaching Company, LLC (P)2006 The Great Courses
Good speaker, well presented and in a light enough way that didn't get boring. Subject covered comprehensively. Made me even more determined to go for a degree in archaeology!
Yes, I have listened to this more than once. It is a fascinating discussion of archaeology for a newcomer.
This lecture series is a fascinating survey of the history of archaeology for the newcomer. I did not think I would like it but it is difficult not to carry on to the next lecture all the time to listen to it in one sitting! Highly recommended!
I bought this book because I was looking for something about Greece. I thought it was about Greek architecture because I wasn’t paying that much attention since it was the only choice in Audible in the category of Greek history. So when I first started to listen to it, I was a little disappointed that it was about Greek and Roman Archaeology. Boy did my opinion change.
This audio book has 36 chapters covering the history of archeology, examples of different sites and social aspects (slaves and women).
The author, John Hale, is absolutely amazing. He tells stories in the old tradition, where you sit back and enjoy his voice, and lyrical tale. He somehow is able to wrap up the ending of each chapter with a wonderful bow that leaves you satisfied yet wanting more.
I came from very little knowledge about archaeology and left with a good basic understanding of the study. I will definitely try more of his lectures.
This deserves all the stars possible.
"Fantastic ride of passion with an "insider""
It is quite possible that I will revisit parts of the lecture again, since both the passion that Mr. Hale (again) shows for his topic and the personal anecdotes he presents to illustrate the work of archaeologists are motivation to dig out some books again or, at the very least, open you eyes to the world around you.
Mr. Hale loves what he does, he is passionate and absolutely able to let his audience participate in his excitement. This is far more than one can say about most scholars, tutors or self-acclaimed specialists on any topic. Even if Mr. Hale at times seems to go a (very tiny) bit overboard with his confidence in what he sees as the "right interpretation", he always manages to get "back on track" and, in comforting contrast to some other lecturers, reminds the student of the "greater picture" and that there might always be more questions than answers in archaeological "evidence".
This is exactly what some European "old school" history professors need: To take one or twenty steps back from their high-handedness, and, may be, get their hands dirty.
Mr. Hale takes his audience on a tour through the history of archaeology. He shows what he considers the beginnings of this profession, telling a lot of - both personal and handed down - anecdotes that illustrate how conception of archaeology and its self-image have changed over time.
In the second part he lights up some more or less known excavations (that have been discussed "to death" elsewhere) by putting them into historical context, linking their background to archaeologists he described in his overview of the profession. This gives a far more complete image of what we learn from such undertakings (the excavations) and the interpretation of the findings, it also puts some perspective on what is going on world-wide at ancient sites today.
A really worth-while listening, touching far more than "only" dusty dirty grave-digging.
"Excellent material and presentation"
I have the DVDs for this course, but I like to listen to this audio when I'm driving. You don't need the visuals to understand the material. Lots of entertaining stories that encourage the listener to find out more. Totally agree with Benoibe - this is audio at its finest.
"One of my top 2 favorites of the Great Courses!"
I have listened to this audiobook 2x recently. It is so interesting!!! I wish there were more books about archeological discoveries. I initially worried from Prof Hale's description in the first lecture that it would be too technical, but it turned out to be exactly what I hoped and much more!!! Prof Hale is an exceptional lecturer! He goes through the great archeological digs relating to Roman and Greek culture, including a bit about Alexander the Great and the Macedonians. Hale doesn't go through the extremely technical part of archeology, instead he focuses on the exciting finds of history; for example, the excavation of Herculaneum and Pompeii is beyond fascinating!!
I know I'm not doing this series justice, but I hope my enthusiasm will convince readers that it's worth their time and credits!! I have bought all of Prof Hale's Great Courses that involve history. He also does a lecture series that involves early ancient religions and the archeological digs that give us information when there is no writing to help us understand. It is very interesting too.
This series along with prof Bob Brier's Ancient Egypt are two of my favorite Great Courses. Prof Brier discusses the archeological discoveries in Egypt. So if you like this audiobook, I highly recommend that series as well.
I hope to see more books and lectures about archeological discoveries. It's such a fascinating part of uncovering history!
"Best Speaker - Professor - EVER"
I've listened to many books - many of The Great Courses. John R. Hale is a truly great speaker. He's passionate about history and archaeology. His enthusiasm is infectious - I was sad for this course to end. But that's okay - I'll listen to every course he has available. I'll also listen to this course again - no doubt.
I have a graduate degree - I've attended many lectures for many years. I can assure you - this is a must listen. Rarely, very rarely do you find someone like this - so I say thank you - thank you to John Hale.
"Very informative, though it could be edited"
Yes, there was a lot to absorb form this lecture series. I would say the first two-thirds were better than the last third, though.
The lecture about underwater archeology was fascinating especially when it reveals that the ancient Greeks had bronze work and mechanical skills that we didn't expect.
The first two-third of the lectures were based on the history of how modern archeology evolved and were well grounded and interesting. The last third seemed to ramble and Hale's interpretation of Archeological finds were heavily biased and not as well supported as the previous lectures.
"Great companion to a trip to Greece"
I was recently in Greece for a vacation and visited many sites there. Listening to Dr. Hale's lectures added so much to my visit.
This material was presented in an interesting way. It is packed with facts and visual descriptions. I thoroughly enjoyed this.
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