world civilization






World Civilizations                                       Fall 2011                     Professor Katsiaficas



                                                         FINAL EXAM ESSAYS


Answer 1. Use the web, books, and any resources you like. Your essay should be a minimum of 2 pages, double-spaced typed. Be sure to acknowledge your sources of information. Your essay is due in Beatty 410 on Tuesday, December 13 between 11am and noon.


1. Read about the Latin conquest of Constantinople in 1202. Based upon your understanding of the history of Byzantium, what forces compelled the actions of the Fourth Crusade? How do you understand the similarities and differences between Byzantium and the Latins? What do you make of the Roman Pope’s return of the artifacts as detailed on the reverse? How did this return connect to the underlying theme in the course about the theft of ancient antiquities?


2. Compare Byzantine and Islamic culture and politics. How do you see (and explain) their similarities and differences? Discuss their tolerance for diversity and the differing status of women in these two civilizations.


3. Why did Western Europe not have a strong, centralized Empire at the end of the Middle Ages? Why might that have been an advantage in the long run? Explain.


4. Two thousand years ago, German tribes lived in much the same way as Native Americans lived on the Great Plains at the time of the American civil war. How do you explain the development of Germany into an industrial power while Native American Plains Indians remained in their state of grace?


5. Seven hundred years ago, the Mongols built what was arguably the greatest empire of anyone before them. The lands they controlled were twice as large as Alexander’s Empire and four times as large as the Roman Empire. Yet today, Mongolia is a relatively poor country. Discuss the reasons why the Mongol Empire disappeared. Are there any comparisons one could make to today’s world situation?





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