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Homework for Tuesday, October 20th

October 16, 2015


For homework tonight you will begin your study of the Minoans. This is our first transition away from Mesopotamia and toward the Greeks – the culture we will be spending most of the second quarter studying. The Minoans were an ancient civilization that was contemporaneous to the rise of the great Sumerian city-states, Sargon, and Hammurabi. You will note though that their culture developed in quite a different way, with alternate deities, economies, and forms of government. Above is a map of the eastern Mediterranean. The Minoans flourished on the island of Crete found in the lower center of the map. Have a sense of where that is and how its geography differs as compared to Mesopotamia.

Your assignment is to do the attached reading. When you finish, you should have in your notes the definitions of the bold-faced terms and the information you need to answer these questions:

1. How did the Minoans react to their limited resources?
2. How did the Minoans benefit from Crete’s “geographic uniqueness”?
3. What was Linear A? How does it impact our understanding of Minoan culture?
4. How was the Minoan bureaucracy organized?
5. What is a “leisure society”? Why is this important to the development of Western culture?
6. Why do you think the Minoan pantheon of gods was primarily matriarchal?
7. What causes the downfall of Minoan civilization? How do we know there was a transfer of power to a more Greek culture?


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