1) Compared to non-civilized societies, what are the major drawbacks of civilization?
2) What advantages does an agriculturally based society have over a hunter/gatherer based society?
3) Why was Jewish monotheism a significant development in the religious history of early civilization?
4) Why is the development of writing important in the history of the river valley civilizations?
5) How did Chinese culture, particularly Confucian philosophy, support the political structure of the Empire?
6) Why did the caste system develop and how was it perpetuated?
7) What differences between Indian and Chinese geography help explain differences in social and cultural patterns?
8) How did the Indian caste system differ from the organization of Chinese society?
9) Compare Greek, Roman, and Confucian ideals.
10) Explore the differences in the Eastern and Western portions of the Roman Empire. How did these differences arise? In what ways can it be argued that the Roman Empire survived in the Eastern Mediterranean even after it collapsed in the West?
11) What were the main factors in Rome's decline? Which do you judge most important? Why?
12) Why did the results of Han China's decline differ from those of the Roman Empire's decline?
13) Compare the major beliefs and religious organization of Christianity and Buddhism.
14) Compare the major beliefs and religious organization of Christianity and Hinduism. 15) Describe the social organization of the Arabs prior to the introduction of Islam.
16) Why was Islam able to appeal to people of so many different cultures?
17) What was the essential dispute within Islam over the succession to the Prophet?
18) What was the difference between the Abbasid Empire and the Umayyad Empire?
19) Discuss the religious trends of the Abbasid era and their impact on the expansion of Islam.
20) By what means did Islam spread to Southeast Asia?
21) What were the common elements of African society prior to the incursion of Islam?
22) By what means was conversion of sub-Saharan Africa carried out? What were the primary avenues of Islamic entry into sub-Saharan Africa?
23) Compare and contrast the spread of European civilization in eastern and western Europe.
24) What was the political organization of the Byzantine Empire?
25) What were the factors in the decline of the Byzantine Empire?
26) In what ways was the culture of Kievan Russia an extension of the Byzantine Empire?
27) Define manorialism and feudalism. How do they provide the building blocks for medieval political structure and society?
28) What were the characteristics of feudal monarchy as demonstrated in France and England between 1000 and 1300?
29) How did the theological outlook of western Europe change between 1000 and 1400?
30) What were the developments that led to increases in monarchic power at the end of the Middle Ages? How was royal authority limited?
Possible Answer Clues
1) Responses can include inequality in social structure and gender as well as disease and war.
2) The greatest advantage is reliable food supply, and hence, the capacity to support larger populations. Agriculture produces surpluses, and those and agriculture's sedentary nature, open the door to specialization and a more elaborate culture, etc. Wrong answers often will exaggerate "progress."
3) Monotheism represented a significant departure from polytheism in its concept of ethics and ideas of justice and in the extent to which the world was viewed as orderly.
4) Writing is essential for record keeping, bureaucracy, commerce, and accumulating knowledge; it also makes possible more varied cultural forms. Writing also led to new social divisions based on selective literacy.
5) Confucianism emphasized order, hierarchy, and deference, including specific injunctions to obey the emperor.
6) The caste system seems to have emerged as a means...
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