“Algaze displays an impressive command of recent research in economic geography and an insightful knowledge of strengths and weaknesses of the textual and archaeological dataset. The result is a tight and theoretically explicit model for the precocious rise of southern Mesopotamian urban society that argues strongly for the primacy of trade, transportation technology, and uniquely diverse geographic circumstances. Algaze’s The Uruk World System drove the research agenda for the Uruk expansion; Ancient Mesopotamia at the Dawn of Civilization will structure the direction of future field research on the emergence of the world’s earliest urban states.”
(Jason Ur, Harvard University)
“This is an important and valuable distillation of Algaze’s most recent thinking on the development of southern Mesopotamian society. While it is indeed a worthy complement to his earlier work, this wholly original book takes his argument much further, making a number of important theoretical points.”
(T.J. Wilkinson, Durham University)
“Outstanding. . . . This book is the single best treatment available in discussing the complex issues involved in bringing about Mesopotamian civilization, offering a model of approach for anyone interested in the emergence of civilization.”
About the Author
Guilllermo Algaze is professor of anthropology at the University of California, San Diego, and the author of The Uruk World System: The Dynamics of Expansion of Early Mesopotamian Civilization, now in its second edition from the University of Chicago Press.