This course is, at its core, an introduction to the history and archaeology of the Levant, Anatolia, Mesopotamia, and Iran from the end of the Late Bronze Age (ca. 1200 BCE) to the rise of Alexander the Great (334 BCE). Against this vast backdrop, the course will focus specifically on cities and kings: we will explore the diverse histories and cultures of the ancient Near East through the dual lenses of urbanism and imperialism. This course is the same as RSP 201 and JDS 201 and course repeat rules will apply. Students should consult with their major department regarding any restrictions on their degree requirements.