This preview shows page 1. Sign up to view the full content.
Unformatted text preview: The Conditions of Civilization
Civilization is social order promoting cultural creation The Four Elements of Civilization Economic Provisions Political Organization Moral Traditions The Pursuit of Knowledge and the Arts Why Civilization? Civilization begins where chaos and insecurity end, for when fear is overcome, curiosity and constructiveness are free, and man passes by natural impulse and leans toward understanding and embellishment Temperate climates are ideal for civilization culture suggests agriculture civilization suggests the city The Origin of the word "Civilization"
Civilization is the habit of "civility" and civility is the refinement that townspeople, who made the word, thought possible only in the civitas or city. With civilization comes art and art begins when men undertake to beautify things The History of Ancient Egypt and its Literature By 4000 B.C. the peoples of the Nile had forged a form of government. Menes, a halflegendary figure, brought the "Two Lands" (Upper and Lower Egypt) under his united power, governed by laws given him by the god Thoth (the god of wisdom). Menes establishes the first historic dynasty, built a new capital at Memphis, and taught the people Egypt and Civilization The first real person in known history is Imhotep (his name meaning "the one who comes in peace) an artist, poet, scientist, physician, architect, and chief advisor to Pharaoh Zorer (or Djose`r); he was also the High Priest for the god Ptah (the god of craftsman). He existed in the Third Dynasty around 2667 B.C. He was responsible for the worlds first known monumental stone building, the step pyramid of Saqqara, and is the first architect we know by name. Soon, the ancient Egyptians begin building pyramids Imhotep and the pyramids are signs of an ever advancing civilization in Egypt Later, Imhotep is deified, known as the chief god of Memphis and the son of Ptah The Pyramids The pyramid's purpose was not architectural but religious; they were tombs Bodies were mummified and placed in these tombs Ancient Egyptians believed that every body was inhabited by the ka, a double (a soul) The ka would survive all the more completely if the flesh were preserved against hunger, violence, and decay. The pyramid by its height, its form, and its position sought stability as a means to deathlessness Painstaking mummification would help preserve the body, thus preserving the ka, while the pyramid would make the afterlife successful and enjoyable Life and the Afterlife and the poetry of Ancient Egypt The ancient Egyptians basically lived to die Death was merely a step to the afterlife, their greatest goal The oldest Egyptian poems are the hymns of the Pyramid Texts; there are also many love poems Poetry has two subjects in Egypt: religious poetry (The Leiden Hymns) and love poetry (The Love Songs) The Gods The Moon might be the oldest god but the sky and the Nile are the chief divinities with the sun being the greatest (Ra or Re the creator) They worshipped every form of life. In the South, Ra was called Amon The first instance of monotheism occurred in Ancient Egypt when Amenhotep IV became Pharaoh (13791362 B.C.); he changes his name to Ikhnaton (which means "Aton is satisfied"); Aton is the sun disk Ikhnaton proposed that there is only one god Aton; henceforth, he was called the heretic king because of his disruption of Egyptian life from ancient times His poetry is the first expression of monotheism Ancient Greece The Trojan War occurred somewhere around 12501150 B.C. Prior to Homer's epic poems, ancient Greece experienced a dark age with no writing, no literacy. Trade with the literate and artistic Phoenicians helped ancient Greece revive their literacy and art. Homer existed in the 8th Century B.C. Homer probably did not write the poems; rather, he restructured what had been passed down through oral tradition into much longer and complex poems to be sung by bards Bards are professional story tellers For the ancient Greeks, the Trojan War was synonymous with national and cultural identity. The Trojan War was the defining moment in the establishment of "Greek character" The Greeks turned to literature rather than religious texts Most educated Greeks would have memorized the entire Iliad and Odyssey, over 30, 000 lines of poetry The Greek Heroic Ideal Aristeia A warrior's (hero's) excellence; the essence of the Greek heroic code time' honor (what you conquer and take) arete' virtue, excellence (in battle) kleos fame, glory (the hero's ultimate reward, prized most) ...
View Full Document