This module aims to introduce students to the major themes of study and the principal issues of European prehistory, from the end of the last Ice Age to the dawn of the historic period, and the exciting research and discovery that characterise this important subject. The course examines many of the classic sites and cultures from across Europe and the Mediterranean that typify the early history of the continent, and some of the theories and models that have resulted from their study.
Two themes run through the module: human adaptation to change (climate, environment, food, technology, social structure) and the emergence of different cultural responses over time and space (such as settlement, economic strategies, material culture, art, burial, status, trade and ethnicity). The module explores and records how humans dealt with change over time, how people adapted to new technologies and economies, and how archaeologists apply scientific methods to study the remote past and its peoples.
The module is delivered through two weekly lectures, tutorial sessions on alternate weeks, and a field trip. Assessment is in the form of a written essay, class tests, and the completion of short written assignment for the tutorial sessions.
Module Co-ordinator: Dr Dirk Brandherm
Principal Contributor: Prof Caroline Malone
(Image: Stonehenge, Wiltshire – R. Rabett)