Course description

Jerusalem is a holy city to the adherents of the three great monotheistic faiths: Judaism, Christianity and Islam. For most of its existence it has also been a national capital or major provincial center for the many states and empires which vied for control of the vital land bridge connecting Africa, Europe and Asia. Thus many of the pivotal events which shaped western civilization were played out in the streets and structures of Jerusalem. This class will explore the history, archaeology, and natural topography of Jerusalem throughout its long life, from its earliest remains in the Chalcolithic period (ca. 4000 B.C.E.) to the 19th century, including Jebusite Jerusalem, Jerusalem as the capital of the Davidic dynasty, the Roman era city of Herod and Jesus, the Crusaders and medieval Jerusalem, and Ottoman Jerusalem as the city entered the modern era. Students will examine the original historical sources (e.g. the Bible, Josephus, the Madeba map, etc.) which pertain to Jerusalem. Slides and videos will be used to illustrate the natural features, man-made monuments, and artifacts which flesh out the textual material providing a fuller image of the world's most prominent spiritual and secular capital.


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Previously offered classes

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