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More ink has probably been spilled on Akhenaten and his times (‘the Amarna Period’) than any other figure from ancient Egypt, with a vast range of interpretations and theories that can leave the uninitiated utterly bewildered. Against this background, Akhenaten: A Historian’s View examines what scholars have said over the years regarding key aspects of the period, to produ More ink has probably been spilled on Akhenaten and his times (‘the Amarna Period’) than any other figure from ancient Egypt, with a vast range of interpretations and theories that can leave the uninitiated utterly bewildered. Against this background, Akhenaten: A Historian’s View examines what scholars have said over the years regarding key aspects of the period, to produce a ‘history of histories,’ exploring exactly how various chains of arguments were arrived at—and how houses of cards thus erected have subsequently come tumbling down. In particular, it teases out ideas based on solid documentation from those based on theory and fancy, and tracks ways in which new evidence became available, how it was interpreted, and how it fed—or didn’t—into the big picture. This book thus fills a major gap in the literature of the Amarna Period and also contributes to the wider, and much neglected, field of the historiography of ancient Egypt.


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More ink has probably been spilled on Akhenaten and his times (‘the Amarna Period’) than any other figure from ancient Egypt, with a vast range of interpretations and theories that can leave the uninitiated utterly bewildered. Against this background, Akhenaten: A Historian’s View examines what scholars have said over the years regarding key aspects of the period, to produ More ink has probably been spilled on Akhenaten and his times (‘the Amarna Period’) than any other figure from ancient Egypt, with a vast range of interpretations and theories that can leave the uninitiated utterly bewildered. Against this background, Akhenaten: A Historian’s View examines what scholars have said over the years regarding key aspects of the period, to produce a ‘history of histories,’ exploring exactly how various chains of arguments were arrived at—and how houses of cards thus erected have subsequently come tumbling down. In particular, it teases out ideas based on solid documentation from those based on theory and fancy, and tracks ways in which new evidence became available, how it was interpreted, and how it fed—or didn’t—into the big picture. This book thus fills a major gap in the literature of the Amarna Period and also contributes to the wider, and much neglected, field of the historiography of ancient Egypt.

28 review for Akhenaten (Auc History of Ancient Egypt)

  1. 4 out of 5

    Bruce

    For an Armana period enthusiast Akhenaten : A Historian’s view is a great resource reviewing and collating over two centuries of Armana research. The book considers the primary sources as well as the biographies by Redford, Aldred, Reeves, and Dodson. It provides extensive notes and a long comprehensive bibliography. He, with very few exceptions, does not introduce new ideas but rather critiques the existing speculation based on objective archaeological and textual evidence. The book includes an For an Armana period enthusiast Akhenaten : A Historian’s view is a great resource reviewing and collating over two centuries of Armana research. The book considers the primary sources as well as the biographies by Redford, Aldred, Reeves, and Dodson. It provides extensive notes and a long comprehensive bibliography. He, with very few exceptions, does not introduce new ideas but rather critiques the existing speculation based on objective archaeological and textual evidence. The book includes an introductory chapter and seven themed chapters covering: the pre-Amarna period, Akhetaten, the religion of Aten, the queens, international relations, the succession, and the royal tombs. Most chapters follow the debate on the selected topic in chronological order of publication in considerable detail. If someone is not familiar with the period it may be fairly tough going, but for the enthusiast, it will be a welcome summary of the arguments. Chapter 6, the international relations chapter, does a very good job reviewing and categorizing the Amarna letters. Chapter 7 demonstrates how an enormous amount of speculation can arise from tiny scraps of physical evidence when the role and origins of Smenkhkare are explored. It seems that the research for the book concluded well before publication in 2019 because of the omission of the recent publications by Barry Kemp, Anna Stevens and Gretchen Dabbs concerning the south tomb and north tomb cemeteries. These were published between 2011 and 2018. In particular, the findings from the north tomb cemetery casts a dark cloud over Akhenaten’s experiment in the desert. But despite this minor point I highly recommend this excellent book.

  2. 4 out of 5

    GMR

    The writing's a little dry at times, but overall this was an interesting and informative read. The writing's a little dry at times, but overall this was an interesting and informative read.

  3. 4 out of 5

    TR

  4. 5 out of 5

    Gus Gleiter

  5. 4 out of 5

    Karina Cruz

  6. 4 out of 5

    Brigitte

  7. 5 out of 5

    Lisa

  8. 5 out of 5

    Anthonyruggier

  9. 5 out of 5

    Amanda

  10. 4 out of 5

    Joyce

  11. 5 out of 5

    Iqra

  12. 5 out of 5

    Ali

  13. 4 out of 5

    Aaron

  14. 5 out of 5

    Olivia Eaton

  15. 4 out of 5

    William Wilson

  16. 4 out of 5

    Paul M Wortman

  17. 5 out of 5

    Iron Mike

  18. 4 out of 5

    Amy

  19. 5 out of 5

    Karela McKennie

  20. 5 out of 5

    Emrys

  21. 4 out of 5

    Jackson

  22. 4 out of 5

    Jen

  23. 5 out of 5

    Danelle Dann

  24. 5 out of 5

    Sameh Milad

  25. 4 out of 5

    charles p. chafee

  26. 4 out of 5

    Richard faris

  27. 4 out of 5

    Rod Dixon

  28. 5 out of 5

    Irina

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