Cuneiform I: You’ve Got Mail – The World’s First Writing

We’re going all the way back to ancient Sumer! Our new epic series is about the world’s oldest writing system, which revolutionized communication. Get your clay tablet and your stylus, and join us for: cuneiform!

Be sure to support the show at www.patreon.com/deadideaspod to get your portrait drawn!

Become our patron on Patreon at www.patreon.com/deadideaspod

Co-hosts: Nick and Anna

Time/place: Ancient Sumer, c. 3000 BCE

Dead Idea: Cuneiform

A Map of Ancient Sumer, c. 3000 BCE, by Adam McKithern

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Main Sources

Bahrani, Z. (2001). Women of Babylon: Gender and Representation in Mesopotamia. New York: Routledge.

Baruch, Book of. 6:43. Douay-Rheims 1899 American Edition. Retrieved 6-20-17 from: https://www.biblegateway.com/verse/en/Baruch%206%3A43

Bertman, S. (2005). Handbook of Life in Ancient Mesopotamia. New York: Oxford University Press.

Black, J., Cunningham, G., Robson, E., and Zólyomi, G. (2004). The Literature of Ancient Sumer. New York: Oxford University Press. – “A Supervisor’s Advice to a Young Scribe”

Bottéro, J. (2001). Everyday Life in Ancient Mesopotamia. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press.

Bottéro, J. (2004). The Oldest Cuisine in the World: Cooking in Mesopotamia. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.

Budin, S. (2006). “Sacred Prostitution in the First Person.” In: Faraone, C. A. & McClure, L. K. (2006). Prostitutes and Courtesans in the Ancient World. Madison, WI: University of Wisconsin Press.

Bullough, V., and Bullough, B. (1987). Women and Prostitution: A Social History. New York: Prometheus Books.

Chalcier, P. (2011). “Cuneiform Culture’s Last Guardians.” In: Radner, K., and Robson, E. (2011). The Oxford Handbook of Cuneiform Culture. New York: Oxford.

Civil, M., Trans. “Hymn to Ninkasi.” Retrieved May 14th, 2017, from: http://www.piney.com/BabNinkasi.html

Faraone, C. A. & McClure, L. K. (2006). Prostitutes and Courtesans in the Ancient World. Madison, WI: University of Wisconsin Press.

Fisher, D. S. (2008). Representations of the Poor in The Poor Man of Nippur and The Eloquent Peasant. Thesis. Nashville, Tennessee: Vanderbilt University.

Foster, B. (1982). “Administration and Use of Institutional Land in Sargonic Sumer.” Copenhagen Studies in Assyriology, Vol. 9. Copenhagen.

George, A., Trans. (1999). The Epic of Gilgamesh: The Babylonian Epic Poem and Other Texts in Akkadian and Sumerian. New York: Penguin.

Glassner, J. (2003). The Invention of Cuneiform. Baltimore, MD: Johns Hopkins University Press.

Harris, S. (2010, Sep. 16). “Prostitutes of God.” Vice. Retrieved 6-20-17 from: https://www.vice.com/en_us/article/prostitutes-of-god-episode-1

Herodotus. (1890). The History of Herodotus. Macaulay, G. C., Trans. Retrieved 6-20-17 from: http://www.sacred-texts.com/cla/hh/hh1190.htm

Jacobsen, T. (1987). The Harps That Once…: Sumerian Poetry in Translation. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press.

Kramer, S. N. (1963). The Sumerians: Their History, Culture, and Character. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.

Lafront, B. (2001). “The Ordeal.” In: Bottéro, J. (2001). Everyday Life in Ancient Mesopotamia. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press.

Lahtinen, S. (n.d.). “The Naditum as Businesswoman: The Economic Role of the Naditum in Old Babylonian Sippur.” Thesis. Uppsala University. Retrieved May 17, 2017, from: https://www.academia.edu/354008/The_Old-Babylonian_naditu_as_businesswoman?auto=download

Nemet-Nejat, K. R. (1998). Daily Life in Ancient Mesopotamia. Westport, CT: Greenwood Press.

“Proverbs, Collection 1.” The Electronic Text Corpus of Sumerian Literature. Retrieved May 27, 2017, from: http://etcsl.orinst.ox.ac.uk/proverbs/t.6.1.01.html

Radner, K., and Robson, E. (2011). The Oxford Handbook of Cuneiform Culture. New York: Oxford.

Roth, M. T. (2006). “Marriage, Divorce, and the Prostitute in Ancient Mesopotamia.” In: Faraone, C. A. & McClure, L. K. (2006). Prostitutes and Courtesans in the Ancient World. Madison, WI: University of Wisconsin Press.

Silver, M. (n.d.). “Temple/Sacred Prostitution in Ancient Mesopotamia Revisited: Religion in the Economy.” Retrieved May 29, 2017, from: https://www.academia.edu/2360254/Temple_Sacred_Prostitution_in_Ancient_Mesopotamia_Revisited

Stone, E. C. (1982). “The Social Role of the Naditu Women in Old Babylonian Nippur.” Journal of the Economic and Social History of the Orient, 15(1): 50-70.

Superdrug Online Doctors. (n.d.). “Perceptions of Perfection.” Superdrug Online Doctors. Retrieved 6-20-17 from: https://onlinedoctor.superdrug.com/perceptions-of-perfection/?utm_source=affiliatewindow&utm_medium=affiliate

Visicato, G. (2000). The Power and the Writing: Early Scribes of Mesopotamia. Bethesda, MD: CDL Press.

 

Maps, pics, references, and more at http://www.deadideas.net. Music and graphic design by Rachel Westhoff. Map by Adam McKithern.

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