Cuneiform Texts and the Writing of History

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Routledge, 1999 - History - 196 pages
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History does not begin in Classical antiquity. Several cultures in the Near East predate Greek historical tradition by many centuries. To understand the history of one of the main ancient Near Eastern cultures, that of Mesopotamia, the scholar has to rely on cuneiform texts which represent the oldest tradition of writing in human history, in use for nearly 3,000 years. The number and variety of texts written in the cuneiform script are enormous, and present a unique source for the study of history. This book describes the possibilities and challenges this material presents to the modern historian. It discusses how the abundant Mesopotamian sources can be used for the study of various aspects of history: political, social, economic and gender.

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