In the book the civilization is examined as the socio-cultural system related to a specific level of social development. Formation of class relations as well as the state foundation is that level with different steps for the first civilizations. They represent the epochal phenomenon that have been promoted on the proscenium of the Old and New Worlds at the end of the primitive ages. Combination of high producted and large-scale agriculture with specialized crafts were typical for the technological side of production. Both creation of the elite subculture and a great number of cultural innovations allow stating that the cultural revolution took place in the ages where the first civilizations were formated. Their type is strictly interpreted in a number of ancient cultures; each of them has its distinguished unrepeatable traits in the technological side of production, in ideology, in social psychology in aesthetical canons. A number of ancient civilizations known in a considerable extent thanks to archaeological discoveries are characterised in the book from the above mentioned positions. Study of processes of cultural genesis according to archaeological data has become the basis for methodological analyses. Culturological reconstructions occupy the determine place in procedure of scientific analysis following the archaeologicial systematization (fig. 2). Typology of the ancient cultures is an important element in analyses where the epochal, regional and local cultural types are notable (fig. 1, 45). Mechanism of cultural changing is connected with the dialectical interaction of traditions and innovations (fig. 3). The latters are often emerged from combinations of traditional elements composed in a new unusual way (fig. 4). After passing through stereotypization stage the innovation itself appears as an element of traditional culture. Among aspects of cultural development one should mark out the spontaneous and the stimulated transformation (fig. 6). Culturological approach allows to study such important phenomenon as the mode of life accurately responded to both epochal and social changes. A special attention is given to the cultural progress, complication of the concrete historical development when the regress and disintegration trends as well as reverting of societies to a lower level of development are possible. Civilization rises to the early agricultural epoch. In this respect creation of a stable system of consummation products, start of development of a great number of specialized manufactures and formation of a new mode of life with the rich world of things appeared the primordial phenomena. The early agricultural site Chatal-Huiik (fig. 7) reveals this and achievements in art. Although with general regularities in this period one should notice also a considerable variety both in culture and in agricultural system. Not all the early agricultural system and bound with them economical structures have been found as perspective ones in a like manner from the further progress point of view. Broad archaeological investigations throw better light on all the real difficult roads in process of historical development.


In Mesopotamia a real chain of subsequent stages is leading from the early agricultural complexes (fig. 14) to the Sumerian civilization (fig. 19) which can be treated as a standard model for a regional cultural type. Both spontaneous transformation and creation of cultural innovations through mutation are fully represented here. In the Northern Syria the progress paces are slacken (fig. 24). At a certain stage the high developed centres influenced the increasing role of stimulated transformation. In Palestine with the available cultural raising in the epoch of archaic agriculturists (Jerikho) subsequent evolution became slacken, culture changed into provincial one (fig. 25) and used Mesopotamian and Egyptian standards. In Asia Minor the early farmers cultural success was more impressionable than that in Palestine (fig. 26). Irregular character of culture resulted in developed military function as well as the role of military leaders (fig. 28) in the III mil. В. С Mesopotamian standards also play the leading part as it was in the Northern Syria at its formation stage.

In the early farmers epoch Iran is represented with a number of brilliant complexes not yielding those in Mesopotamia (fig. 31, 32). Then one can observe the uneven rate of growth. In southern-west regions the protoelam civilization is formed. There equally with the initial local stratum Mesopotamian cultural standards were of important enough. Creation of the protourban of the early-urban culture in the rest of the territory takes place in the III mil. В. С (fig. 34). Desintegration of those ancient civilized centres is over in the middle of the II mil. В. С, where class relations and state system were of less significance, being precipitated in the west through the military and political interaction with the states in the West Asia.

Materials of the meridional Middle Asia indicate of the spontaneous transformation according to the Sumerian standards but a little slacker for the limited natural resources (fig. 36). At times one can state the stimulated impact of the Iranian and Mesopotamian cultural standards. Discovered regional Altyn-depe civilization (fig. 38) may characterise the early- urban organism being developed in a natural way on the basis of communitive structions. Both collapsing and desintegration of the centre of impulsive development simultaneous with the same process in Iran made it trasferred to the east in Margiana and in Bactria. Irregular cultural development is also typical for Hindustan. Culture of the archaic farmers (fig. 46) close to the Middleasian Jeitun evolves rather rapidly in the high developed system, that bears the strongly pronounced features of cultural peculiarity. To all appearances the spontaneous transformation type prevails here. Harappian civilization belonged to the ancient eastern regional type has rather distinctive traits in sphere of urban amenities and in that of military function that was poorly developed. Broad stable lies both in culture and in trade with Mesopotamia as well as with far northern centres including the Altyn-Depe civilization are typical for it.

As origines of ancient Chinese agriculturists stay unclear general cultural aspect of that period keeps much originality (fig. 54). Spontaneous type of transformation prevails here. Adopted metallurgy could be there only as the technological import less influenced the local cultural aspect. One should state the In dynasty standards impacked greatly the centres beyond the nuclear zone of the civilization.

With the chronological gap available between the first civilizations of the Old World and the ancient culture of Peru and that of Mesoamerica the latters are obviously appropriated to the same epochal type. Their creation and progress confirm significance of the first civilizations period as the diachronous phenomenon with the definite stages of the mankind history. The initial stratum of the early agricultural epoch is accurately revealed in the New World. Complex economy which combined agriculture and marine resources (fig. 59) indicates of the considerable cultural achievements in the littoral regions of Peru. Mochika (fig. 64) and Olmek (fig. 65) civilizations though being retarded in the formative stage created initial cultural standards and patterns for their regions. Socio-cultural system of the Post- Olmek Mesoamerica with the common features, determined according with the epochal and regional cultural type, had much peculiarities in each civilization. Study of ancient cultures in dialectic unity of general and separate traits is the most perspective way in analysis of the historical past.

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2000 Умер Герман Алексеевич Фёдоров-Давыдов — советский и российский историк, археолог, специалист по нумизматике Золотой Орды и средневековой Восточной Европы, один из основателей и руководитель Поволжской археологической экспедиции. Доктор исторических наук, профессор Московского государственного университета.


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