Ancient Near East: The Basics surveys the history of the ancient Middle East from the invention of writing to Alexander the Great's conquest. The book introduces both the physical and intellectual environment of those times, the struggles of state-building and empire construction, and the dissent from those efforts. Topics covered include: What do we mean when we talk about the Ancient Near East? The rise and fall of powerful states and monarchs Daily life both in the cities and out in the fields The legacy of the Ancient Near East: religion, science and writing systems. Featuring a glossary, chronology and suggestions for further reading, this book has all the tools the reader needs to understand the history and study of the Ancient Near East.