The program in Egyptology centers on the study of Middle Egyptian language and scripts, and the history, archaeology, religion, and culture of ancient Egypt. Other phases of the Egyptian language are also covered. Students are also advised to enroll in courses on Mesopotamia, ancient Israel, and the Mediterranean world in order to contextualize the civilization of Ancient Egypt. The program also emphasizes research on the Egyptian collections in the Kelsey Museum of Archaeology through participation in exhibitions, object-oriented independent study, and fieldwork. Students are encouraged to take advantage of the resources of the Papyrology Collection of the University Library.
In this program the language, literature, history, and culture of Ancient Israel and its neighbors are investigated. In addition to Hebrew, Aramaic, and Ugaritic courses, Mesopotamian languages, Greek, and Arabic can be elected. A rotating series of seminars presents special topics to graduate students. The lifeways and culture of ancient Israel are studied within a broad ancient Near Eastern context and also with reference to formal anthropological, historical, literary, and religious modes of analysis.
The Arabic program leads to a degree in Arabic literature and linguistics of the medieval and contemporary periods. It is linked with offerings in Islamic Studies and Near Eastern History and cooperates with other disciplinary units such as Linguistics and Comparative Literature. Professional and research interests of the faculty in Arabic include modern Arabic literature and its role in Arab society; medieval Arabic literature and its role in Islam; Arabic papyrology; literary analysis; translation; Arabic linguistics and dialectology; and the teaching of Arabic as a Foreign Language. Every attempt is made to design programs of study to fit the particular needs of individual students, as well as to prepare them for academic, government, business, and other professional employment.
Note: Students also have the opportunity to study Arabic in various Arabic Language Study Programs, many of which are overseas.
All periods of Armenian language, literature, history and culture are taught in this program in the broader Near Eastern and former Soviet contexts. Courses in Western Armenian, literature, history and culture are taught regularly and Classical and Eastern Armenian in alternate years. Independent study courses are offered to ensure complete coverage when established courses are not taught, and individual courses are tailored to fit the needs and interests of students. Many courses in Armenian Studies are relevant to students specializing in fields such as Anthropology, Classical Studies, Comparative Literatures, History and History of Art, Linguistics and Religious and Social studies. Professional and research interests of the faculty include: Armenian language, literature, history and historiography, intellectual history, nationalism and identity, anthropology, diaspora studies, and translation.
The modern Hebrew program educates students in modern Hebrew language and literature, and also in earlier periods of literature, including Aramaic texts. The program is supported by courses in the programs of Judaic Studies, Linguistics, Comparative Literature, Political Science, and History. Professional and research interests of the faculty in Hebrew include literary history and criticism, linguistics, translation, language and technology, the teaching of Hebrew as a foreign language, and several aspects of culture. The program prepares students for academic, government, and business careers as well as employment in Jewish community activities. A flyer detailing requirements for the program is available in the departmental office. For more information, visit the Hebrew and Jewish Cultural Studies website.
Islamic studies specialists teach a wide range of courses in medieval and modern Near Eastern history, pertaining to the rise and development of the Islamic religion, Islamic intellectual history and Muslim civilization. In addition to general survey courses on Islam, offerings are available in areas such as Islamic law, dialectical theology, mysticism, philosophy, Qur'anic exegesis, and pre-Islamic Arab culture. Seminars in Islamic studies make extensive use of original, classical Arabic sources and, hence, develop in the student essential philological skills required for research, such as the ability to understand and work with the technical terminologies of the Islamic religious and intellectual sciences.
Note: Students also have the opportunity to study Arabic for Islamic Studies in various Arabic Language Study Programs, many of which are overseas.
The focus of the program is on the languages, literatures, history, culture, and archaeology of Mesopotamia and on neighboring ancient states and cultures. Language courses in Sumerian and Akkadian are regularly scheduled, and offerings in Hittite and Egyptian are also available. The program in Mesopotamian studies emphasizes both the original contexts in which texts and artifacts were produced and the modern means for their interpretation. Students are encouraged to take courses in Anthropology, Classical Studies, Comparative Literatures, Religious Studies, and other units on campus.
Persian Studies offers in-depth investigations in the areas of classical and contemporary Persian literature, Persian history, Persian and Iranian linguistics. Independent study courses are available in Old Persian, Avestan, and other areas not offered on a regular basis. This program is supported by courses in the departments of Anthropology, History, Political Science, History of Art, and Economics. Professional and research interests of the faculty include literary history, literary theory and criticism, history, historiography, linguistics and dialectology, and Iranian religion. While the program chiefly prepares students for an academic career, interdisciplinary programs of study can be arranged for students interested in business and government employment.
The program trains doctoral students in the literature, history, religion, and culture of ancient Judaism in the Roman and Byzantine periods. The curriculum embraces the full spectrum of written sources from the ancient world, archaeology, and art. Special attention is given to developing proficiency in ancient languages and literary analytical skills, as well as to material culture. The program emphasizes (a) the Graeco-Roman context in which ancient Judaism and early Christianity developed (all students are required to gain a certificate in Greek and Roman History as part of their course work); and (b) critical and interdisciplinary approaches to the study of the past.
The Program trains graduate students as scholars and teachers in the field of Second Temple Judaism and Christian Origins, covering all major literary corpora of the period (Old and New Testament, Apocrypha and Pseudepigrapha, Dead Sea Scrolls, Philo, Josephus, Apostolic Fathers, Jewish-Hellenistic Literature) with no distinction between the canonical and the non-canonical, the Jewish and the Christian. Special attention is given to developing proficiency in ancient languages and literary analytical skills in the study of the intellectual context in which ancient Judaism and early Christianity developed.
This program trains students in Ottoman or modern Turkish language and culture. Supplemental instruction is given in related dialects of Azeri and Chagatay. Appropriate courses in the departments of Anthropology, Comparative Literature, Economics, History, History of Art, Linguistics, and Political Science support the program. Students may also choose independent study courses to ensure complete coverage of a particular program when established courses are not offered on a regular basis. Literary history and criticism, translation, and several aspects of cultural study are among the research interests of the faculty. The program prepares students for academic, government, and business employment. For more information, visit the Turkish Studies Web Site.