Egypt and Africa

The history of the African civilization and society deserves significant attention and study.  African studies at large were largely subordinated to the study of Egypt which received massive investments from Orientalist institutes and universities in the US and Europe.  Within the last few generations however African studies blossomed and this allows a broader and more complete assessment of ancient history and its patterns of migration, and social and cultural history.

Reading Assignment in Primary Texts on Ancient Egypt:
1)  Tale of the Eloquent Peasant (from the Fordham Internet Sourcebook)
     What does this text suggest about the assertion of rights by common Egyptians circa 1800 BC?

2)  The Tale of Senahet  An Egyptian palace official called Sanehat, upon the death of the king, is forced to  flee Egypt.  He flees to the Sinai where he nearly dies of thirst until he is rescued by semi-nomadic tribes.  He emigrates to lower Syria where he tries to win the favor of a tribal ruler there. He engages with a duel with another Syrian who was probably threatened by his status.  He apparently remained in Syria for some time, but in old age, he writes of his decision to return to Egypt and to the palace court of his origins.  What does this text instruct us about how elites maneuvered and negotiated their way among other elites in other ancient kingdoms? 
3)  Wen Amun's Journey.  Although this text may be a work of fiction rather than an actual report, the account of Wen Amon's journey as an Egyptian traveler and official to Phoenicia in the 11th c. BCE,  XXth dynasty of the New Kingdom reveals much about the nature of diplomacy and commerce and the rise of the Sea Peoples and piracy in the Mediterranean. 
Egypt History Periodization 

Sources:  (see also the Primary Sources tab)
  1. Egyptian Literature
  2. Egyptian History
  3. Digital Egypt
  4. Theban Mapping Project
  1. On Late Predynastic and Early Dynastic Period 3400-2686 BCE
  2. Old Kingdom 2686-2160 BCE
  3. First Intermediate Period 2160-2055 BCE
  4. Middle Kingdom 2055-1650 BCE
  5. Second Intermediate Period 1700-1550 BCE
  6. New Kingdom 1550-1069 BCE 
  7. Third Intermediate Period 1069-715 BCE
  8. Late Period 715-332 BCE
  9. 332-30 BCE Ptolemaic Period
  10. Roman Period 30BC-395 AD
The Kingdoms of Meroe, Nubia and Axum
To the South of Egypt, three main civilizations arose to prominence during the ancient and classical periods.  These kingdoms were great rivals to the Egyptian dynasties and during various periods invaded, conquered or developed direct relations with Egyptian kingdoms.