I. Questions of periodization A. Nature and causes of changes in the world history framework leading up to 600 C. E. – 1450 as a period

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VIII. Diverse interpretations

A. What are the issues involved in using cultural areas rather than states as units of analysis?

1. Political boundaries

a. Yes, they might have centralized government, but…different people forced to live together

b. More centralized you get, the more organized you are, but…cultures oftentimes keep people united more than government

c. Political boundaries oftentimes based on convenient geographic factors, but don’t take cultural differences into account

2. Cultural Boundaries

a. During post-classical era – easier to write about regions in terms of cultural areas

1. Muslim World

2. Jewish Community

b. Religion a good way to divide

1. Christian sphere, Islamic sphere, Hindu sphere, Buddhist sphere

2. but…some overlap (Confucianism and Buddhism)

3. and…some are quite different (Eastern Europe vs. Western Europe)

c. Consider grouping the world into cultures that interacted vs. cultures that didn’t

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