Corridors and Colonies: Comparing fourth-third millennia BC interactions in Southeast Anatolia and the Levant

Raphael Greenberg, Giulio Palumbi

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


This study addresses what appear to be similar modes of external interaction experienced by societies of the Anatolian Euphrates valley and the northwestern Levant on the one hand, and on the other the southern Levant during the fourth and third millennia BC. During the fourth millennium BC, both regions were the target of expansion by neighboring literate cultures, Uruk in the north and Egypt in the south. Both regions were significantly affected by the withdrawal of colonizers associated with these expansions, and both saw the arrival of a vastly different third-millennium BC spread of people and ideas derived from the Kura-Araks cultures of eastern Anatolia and the southern Caucasus. In our discussion, we introduce cultural and sociopolitical developments in each region, and then compare them. To what extent are the Uruk and Egyptian ventures colonial in intent and in impact? What occurs in their aftermath? What brought ‘Kura-Araks people’ southward, and what cultural markers did they preserve in the farthest reaches of their expansion? What links together the various regions that they inhabited? This cross-regional consideration summarizes the present state of inquiry and initiates a dialogue on the significance of long-range interaction at the periphery of the core civilizations at the dawn of the Bronze Age.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Cambridge Prehistory of the Bronze and Iron Age Mediterranean
PublisherCambridge University Press
Number of pages28
ISBN (Electronic)9781139028387
ISBN (Print)9780521766883
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2014


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