Gregory Aldrete Ph.D.

Gregory Aldrete Ph.D. >

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Cities, Civilizations, and Sources
Episode 1 of History of the Ancient World
Learn about the different kind of approach the course will take in its explorations of the ancient world and hear a story that perfectly illustrates the risks inherent in letting one's own cultural biases and limited perspective overly influence the…
The Byzantine Empire and the Legacy of Rome
Episode 42 of History of the Ancient World
The eastern Roman: or Byzantine: Empire would outlast its counterpart in the West by a thousand years. Follow the fortunes of this flourishing hub, which included one of the most powerful women of antiquity and one of the ancient world's…
Mystics, Buddhists, and Zoroastrians
Episode 14 of History of the Ancient World
Your attention shifts to those thinkers who looked beyond the physical world for answers to their questions about the fundamental issues of existence. Examine the impact of several key texts and belief systems, including the Upanishads, Jainism, Buddhism, Daoism, and…
From Out of the Mesopotamian Mud
Episode 2 of History of the Ancient World
The course's first civilization reveals a theme that will appear again and again. Grasp the critical role of geography and resources in shaping not only Mesopotamia's method of subsistence, but also its religion, structures, empire, and means of leaving its…
1942 Stalingrad—Hitler’s Ambitions Crushed
Episode 35 of The Decisive Battles of World History
Chart the German invasion of Russia at the height of the war in Europe, which massed the full force of Hitler's war machine. Follow the clash of the seemingly invincible German panzer units with the Red Army and the Russian…
1600 Sekigahara—Samurai Showdown
Episode 20 of The Decisive Battles of World History
In this monumental episode of the samurai era, learn about the underlying politics and the major figures in the conflict, including one whose wavering loyalty took an astonishing turn on the battlefield. Track the events that unified Japan under a…
Ancient Egypt: The Gift of the Nile
Episode 4 of History of the Ancient World
Your introduction to Egypt reveals a civilization irrevocably shaped by geography. You learn how the Nile's predictable annual flooding of its banks, though creating a fertile strip amounting to only 3% of Egypt, permitted civilization to thrive in what was…
The Lost Civilization of the Indus Valley
Episode 6 of History of the Ancient World
Your exploration of a once-lost civilization introduces a key theme of the course: the enormous problems faced by modern historians and archaeologists in interpreting an ancient civilization through physical evidence alone, with no written documents to bring that evidence to…
What Makes a Battle Decisive?
Episode 1 of The Decisive Battles of World History
Contemplate the ways in which warfare can change the course of historical events. Examine the factors that make a military battle "decisive," such as its role in transfers of power and its social and political effects, and consider the study…
1942 Midway—Four Minutes Change Everything
Episode 34 of The Decisive Battles of World History
The advent of aircraft carriers brought a significant new era in naval warfare. Witness the most dramatic and pivotal of the "carrier versus carrier" battles, where the events of a short span of minutes permanently tilted the balance of power…
Homer and Indian Poetry
Episode 9 of History of the Ancient World
Discover how a work or body of literature can become the core of an entire culture in this examination of the influence of Homer on the Greeks and of the centrality of the Vedas and Epics in the civilizations of…
1066 Hastings—William Conquers England
Episode 10 of The Decisive Battles of World History
The Battle of Hastings changed the course of both English and world history. Here, encounter the redoubtable figure of William the Conqueror and his 1066 invasion of England to claim the crown. Witness the terrible engagement at Hastings and its…
Confucius and the Greek Philosophers
Episode 13 of History of the Ancient World
From 700 to 500 B.C., thinkers around the world began to turn to fundamental philosophical questions. This episode focuses on those whose concerns addressed this world and its pragmatic issues through rational inquiry, including Confucius, the Legalists, and the Greek…
The Great Empire of the Han Dynasty
Episode 25 of History of the Ancient World
Much of the world in 200 B.C. was entering nearly 600 years of instability: but something different was happening in China and Rome. Focus on the first of these two powers, each of which would shape a stable empire for…
Cultures of the Ancient Near East
Episode 3 of History of the Ancient World
The lack of geographical barriers made it difficult for even the most powerful cities to retain their power. See how a succession of empires rose and fell, leaving behind legacies ranging from the use of intimidation in warfare to seafaring,…
Mystery Cultures of Early Greece
Episode 8 of History of the Ancient World
Turn to the Minoan and Mycenaean civilizations of the Mediterranean. Learn about the historical underpinnings of the Minotaur myth, Plato's account of what might have been the basis for the legend of Atlantis, and the rediscovery of writing as Greece…
The Rise and Flourishing of Islam
Episode 45 of History of the Ancient World
Grasp how the tribes of the Arabian peninsula: within only 100 years of their conversion to Islam: were able to conquer half the Mediterranean world, shattering its unity, spinning its parts onto divergent paths, and establishing religious, linguistic, and cultural…
Athens and Experiments in Democracy
Episode 10 of History of the Ancient World
Greece's most famous city-state is often praised for its creation of democracy. You examine the origins of that system and discover some surprising revelations, including the seminal role played by an instance of spurned affection and perhaps the earliest example…
The Vedic Age of Ancient India
Episode 7 of History of the Ancient World
In an ironic reversal of the Indus legacy, the next great era of Indian history is known through an enormous bounty of texts, but relatively little archaeological or material evidence. Grasp what the thousands of verses we have tell us…
1759 Quebec—Battle for North America
Episode 23 of The Decisive Battles of World History
This key incident in the Seven Years War between England and France critically shaped the future of North America. Discover the conflict through the eyes of the opposing commanders as the British assault Quebec City. Observe the remarkable serendipity favoring…