Course Description

Ancient Near East 15: Women and Power in Ancient World, AN N EA 15

Lecture, four hours; discussion, one hour. Examination of how feminine power confronts masculine dominance within complex social systems in ancient world. To gain political power, some female rulers used their sexuality to gain access to important men. Other women gained their position as regents and helpers of masculine kings who were too young to rule. Others denied their femininity in dress and manner, effectively androgynizing themselves or pretending to be men so that their femininity would not be obstacle to political rule. Many women only gained throne at end of dynasties after male line had run out entirely, or in midst of civil war when patrilineal successions were in disarray. Women were sometimes only effective leaders left in drawn-out battles against imperial aggression. No women were able to gain reigns of power through their bloodlines alone. Women's power was compromised from outset. Examination of root causes and results of this political inequality. P/NP or letter grading.

Key Information

Credit: 5 quarter units / 3.33 semester units credit
UC Los Angeles, Near Eastern Languages and Cultures

Course Credit:

Upon successful completion, all online courses offered through cross-enrollment provide UC unit credit. Some courses are approved for GE, major preparation and/or, major credit or can be used as a substitute for a course at your campus.

If "unit credit" is listed by your campus, consult your department, academic adviser or Student Affairs division to inquire about the petition process for more than unit credit for the course.

UC Berkeley:
Unit Credit

UC Davis:
Unit Credit

UC Irvine:
Unit Credit

UC Los Angeles:
General Education: Historical Analysis

UC Merced:
Units toward degree (see your advisor)

UC Riverside:
Elective units

UC San Diego:
General Education: ERC - 1 course for Africa or ME Regional Specialization; TMC 1 course toward lower division disciplinary breadth if noncontiguous to major

UC San Francisco:
Unit Credit

UC Santa Barbara:
General Education: Possible Area D after petition; Possible World Cultures after petition;
Major Preparation: likely applicable toward the History BA 4 lower division units from any field in history, or History of Public Policy BA as a course from cultures outside the US and Europe, by petition

UC Santa Cruz:
Unit Credit

Course Creator

Kathlyn (Kara) Cooney

Dr. Kathlyn (Kara) Cooney is a professor of Egyptian Art and Architecture at UCLA. Specializing in craft production, coffin studies, and economies in the ancient world, Cooney received her PhD in Egyptology from Johns Hopkins University. In 2005, she was co-curator of Tutankhamun and the Golden Age of the Pharaohs at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. Cooney produced a comparative archaeology television series, entitled Out of Egypt, which aired in 2009 on the Discovery Channel and is available online via Netflix and Amazon.

The Woman Who Would Be King: Hatshepsut’s Rise to Power in Ancient Egypt, Cooney’s first trade book, was released in 2014 and benefits from her expert perspective on Egypt’s ancient history to craft an illuminating biography of its least well-known female king. As an archaeologist who spent years at various excavations in Egypt, Cooney draws from the latest field research to fill in the gaps in the historical record of Hatshepsut.

Cooney’s current research in coffin reuse, primarily focusing on the 19th and 21st Dynasties, is ongoing. Her research investigates the socioeconomic and political turmoil that have plagued the period, ultimately affecting funerary and burial practices in ancient Egypt. This project has taken her around the world over the span of five to six years to study and document nearly 300 coffins in collections, including those in Cairo, London, Paris, Berlin, and Vatican City.

Dr. Kathlyn (Kara) Cooney is a professor of Egyptian Art and Architecture at UCLA. Specializing in craft production, coffin studies, and economies in the ancient world, Cooney received her PhD in Egyptology from Johns Hopkins University. In 2005, she was co-curator of  Tutankhamun   and the Golden Age of the Pharaohs  at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. Cooney produced a comparative ...

Dr. Kathlyn (Kara) Cooney is a professor of Egyptian Art and Architecture at UCLA. Specializing in craft production, coffin studies, and economies in the ancient world, Cooney received her PhD in Egyptology from Johns Hopkins University. In 2005, she was co-curator of Tutankhamun and the Golden Age of the Pharaohs at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. Cooney produced a comparative archaeology television series, entitled Out of Egypt, which aired in 2009 on the Discovery Channel and is available online via Netflix and Amazon.

The Woman Who Would Be King: Hatshepsut’s Rise to Power in Ancient Egypt, Cooney’s first trade book, was released in 2014 and benefits from her expert perspective on Egypt’s ancient history to craft an illuminating biography of its least well-known female king. As an archaeologist who spent years at various excavations in Egypt, Cooney draws from the latest field research to fill in the gaps in the historical record of Hatshepsut.

Cooney’s current research in coffin reuse, primarily focusing on the 19th and 21st Dynasties, is ongoing. Her research investigates the socioeconomic and political turmoil that have plagued the period, ultimately affecting funerary and burial practices in ancient Egypt. This project has taken her around the world over the span of five to six years to study and document nearly 300 coffins in collections, including those in Cairo, London, Paris, Berlin, and Vatican City.


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