Where would you locate this civilization geographically and why?

I. THE BASICS: Where would you locate this civilization geographically and
why? If you have a particular preference for a time period in which to place your
civilization, what would it be? (NOTE: Even if you put this civilization into a time
frame, your examples DO NOT have to come only from groups that fit that time
frame. Remember that this is YOUR civilization you are not limited by time or
geographic constraints.)
AND…in this section, you do NOT need to base your time period and/or location
selection on any examples from the course. You may, in effect, set your
civilization a long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away… got it?
How would you run your civilization? Here is where
you need to begin to explain WHAT you would do and WHY. It just so happens
that an ambassador from a very distant planet has come to visit you to talk about
establishing diplomatic relations. His name is Beowulf – he has been sent as
the representative of a very advanced civilization. How are you going to define
and explain your governmental system to him? Whatever system you do decide
to have, whether it is a monarchy/dynasty, democracy, oligarchy, theocracy or
something else in between or blended, you MUST make sure that you define
your terms to the great hero Beowulf and then explain how your government
operates and WHY you use that particular form rather than something else. As
the former leader of a Germanic tribe, he may not be very familiar with the terms
and concepts you use, and you certainly do not want to confuse the issue.
III. BELIEF SYSTEM: What would the religious focus of your civilization be?
Would you have only one religion, or would you have several and WHY would
you do this? What sort of structures would you build as places for people to
worship? Where would you locate them and why?
As part of this question, you will need to explain the religious doctrine(s) of your
society. You will also need to define ALL of the terms you use to name and
describe your belief system. This is particularly important, since you have two
visitors interested in religious doctrines. One is a Buddhist monk, the other is a
Roman from the city of Pompeii. In talking about your civilizations belief(s), you
will need to explain everything in terms that these two visitors will understand. If
you have aspects of Islam, for instance, do NOT assume that either one will
know what a hajj is or that they have ever read the Quran.
IV. THE ARTS: What would you do about art, architecture and music? What
sort of buildings would exist for people to live/work in what would they look like
and how would they be made? What sort of paintings, sculptures, jewelry,
instrumental/vocal music could be found in your civilization and why? Provide
specific examples and discuss not only your choices but the reasons
realistically and symbolically for those choices.
Here you have another dilemma…a Paleolithic nomad has shown up to look at
your art, take samples of your jewelry and other decorations, to tour your
buildings and to listen to your music. He does not have a CLUE about anything,
so you MUST define clearly all
aspects of your civilization dealing with the arts, the architecture and music…and
you must define and describe these aspects in ways that this unusual visitor will
understand and appreciate. It might be helpful to compare the symbols in your
art using examples he is familiar with – like the cave paintings we looked at in the
beginning of the semester. (HINT: remember the definition for symbol and the
discussion on magic).
V. LITERATURE: What forms of written expression could be found in your
civilization? Again, use examples from Fiero and explain the reasons for your
choices.
Once more you are faced with a bit of a problem…Dante has decided to pay you
a visit and would like to be entertained – with LITERATURE – so you will need to
help him out. Make sure you define your terms and provide clear examples that
he can appreciate (as an example, IF you have as one of your literary forms Sufi
poetry, you will have to tell him WHAT it is, give him an example and tell him
what that example means…you might even challenge him to create an example
of his own, IF you feel brave enough.) But remember: Dante has made it very
clear what your afterlife might be like if you fail to answer his questions truthfully!
OK, NOW, FOR THIS LAST SECTION, YOU WILL NEED TO USE YOUR
IMAGINATION AND PERHAPS NOT JUST THE COURSE MATERIALS.
VI. EMBELLISHMENTS AND PASTIMES: Give an example of a typical day in
your society. Talk about the social system would there be classes of people
and why/why not? How would the people amuse themselves during their free
time? Would you have holidays (religious and/or secular) why or why not? CONCLUSIONS: Discuss some of the advantages and disadvantages of
your civilization. How long do you think it would last? HUMANITIES 001