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On profit-seeking, market orientations, and mentality in the "Ancient Near East."

IN THIS ERA OF PARTICULARISM and extreme specialization in scholarship, one encounters all too rarely the scholar with the intellectual fortitude and breadth of interest to venture beyond the haven of his own narrowly defined expertise. To his credit, the economist/economic historian Morris Silver has embarked upon such a venture in this book, which is largely a continuation of his earlier research (see esp. his Prophets and Markets: The Political Economy of Ancient Israel |Boston: Kluwer-Nijhoff, 1983~ and "Karl Polanyi and Markets in the Ancient Near East: The Challenge of the Evidence," Journal of Economic History 53 |1983~: 795-829). Silver sets himself the daunting task of bridging the gap between economists and other social scientists, on the one hand, and ancient Near East specialists and historians of antiquity, on the other. He addresses this task by assembling copious, diverse literature on economic structures in the ancient Near East and then approaching this material from the viewpoint of an economist. His discussions, accordingly, are replete with concepts and approaches that are somewhat alien to the usual scholarly discourse of most Assyriologists, Egyptologists, and historians of the ancient Near East. Silver wields these tools to produce an array of insights and hypotheses, some of them daring and, on occasion, even provocative. In attempting to support his interpretations, however, Silver employs historical evidence in a fashion that, from a historian's point of view, is frequently much too unsystematic, at times verging on the naive.

The first part of the following essay reviews the more salient elements of Silver's discussion; the second part offers a critique founded on some general conceptual and methodological concerns.

Silver divides his discussion into three essentially independent parts. In part I ("Structural Characteristics of the Ancient Economy"), Silver applies the concept of transaction costs ("the resources used up in exchanging ownership rights including costs of communication, acquiring and disseminating information, and designing and enforcing contracts"--p. 1) to the analysis of ancient Near Eastern economies. In so doing, he identifies and discusses various economic techniques and tendencies as elements in a strategy to cope with high transaction costs. Thus, chapter 1 examines the contributions of gods to economic growth, with particular attention to the role of temples as centers and protectors of trade and as business enterprises (even as "tax shelters"--p. 20) and to the importance of gods and oaths as binding forces in contracts. Especially intriguing is his analysis of syncretism as "the creation of a new public capital good, 'trust'", that enabled communities to reduce transaction costs by creating common religious practices. In this regard he notes, among other examples, aspects of the Osiris myth as solidifying the commercial links between Egypt and Byblos, and the sharing of Inanna as a goddess by both Aratta and Uruk as reflected in "Enmerkar and the Lord of Aratta." The gods' contributions to economic growth are rewarded when this growth results in the allocation of more resources to cultic purposes. In chapter 2, Silver examines the adaptations of markets and hierarchical relationships to transaction costs. He devotes specific attention to the importance of symbolic action ("publicly performed, conventional gestures"--p. 32) and recitation in lowering the costs of contracts, and to what he terms the "code of the merchant," an idea that he predicates upon a (perhaps anachronistic?) translation of awilum as a "gentleman" who ought to conduct his dealings according to ethical professional standards. Also examined are the importance of gift trade ("mutually beneficial intertemporal barter exchanges to take advantage of unexpected opportunities or to satisfy unexpected needs"--p. 34) and the role of family, women as enterpreneurs, and slaves and adoptees as tactics in combatting high transaction costs, especially by reducing opportunistic behavior within family firms. In Silver's view, firms in the ancient Near East would have been smaller, more diversified, and more versatile than modern firms, in order to combat "high communication costs and a relatively limited pool of entrepreneurs", and they were distinguished by a marked family orientation. Chapters 3 and 4 provide, respectively, a brief (and not especially enlightening) treatment of the "redistributionist or temple-state hypothesis" and a discussion of commercial transport by land and water and the role of storage.

The two chapters of part II represent Silver's most recent attempt to lay to rest Karl Polanyi's model of the ancient Near Eastern economy. (Much of what appears in these chapters is also to be found in Silver 1983a.) Silver presents his case against Polanyi by criticizing and rejecting a series of fourteen "assertions" that he derives from Polanyi's arguments. Most of these "assertions" have become quite familiar to ancient Near East historians, especially those relating to the supposed absence of marketplaces (assertion 8), of supply-demand mechanisms to determine prices (assertion 1), of money (assertion 9), and of "private" trading (assertions 6, 11, and 12) from ancient Near Eastern economies, as well as those assertions relating to the once widely postulated, virtually monolithic domination of ancient Near Eastern society and economy by the "public," essentially redistributive institutions of palace and temple households (assertions 2, 3, 4, and 9).

In recent years a number of ancient Near East specialists have rejected Polanyi's views as in many instances unsubstantiated or even contradicted by the evidence (see, for example, Gledhill and Larsen 1982), and Silver's conclusions can hardly be termed revolutionary. In fact, Silver's criticisms of Polanyi's views (as presented in Silver 1983a) have been challenged by A. Mayhew, W. C. Neale, and D. W. Tandy (1985), who argue that the evidence that Silver adduces for price fluctuation is not in itself sufficient to disprove Polanyi's assertion that there were no self-regulating markets in the ancient Near East. In their view, Silver fails to provide any evidence that "the quantities of goods supplied depended upon the prices of the goods and the prices of the inputs needed to supply the goods, and that the material standard of living of persons depended on the prices they received for contributing to the production of goods" (1985: 129).

In the course of his critique of Polanyi, Silver offers several provocative interpretations regarding ancient Near Eastern society and economy. He rejects as an "illusion" Diakonoff's postulation of communal kin-based land ownership as evidenced by late 3rd-millennium B.C.E. Mesopotamian land-sale contracts, and argues instead that these contracts demonstrate the ownership of land by individuals (in the process citing Komoroczy in a somewhat confusing fashion and introducing some European evidence that seems of dubious relevance, at best). He goes on to reject, as well, Diakonoff's contention that there was no supply response or commodity production for market in ancient Near Eastern economies. Indeed, Silver is firmly convinced that major portions of ancient Near Eastern economic life can be explained in terms of entrepreneurs and market orientations. Noting, for instance, the evidence of large-scale production of copper and tin in the ancient Near East, Silver finds it "difficult to imagine" that such quantities "would have been mined in the absence of a market orientation". Likewise, the proliferation of date-palm orchards in southern Mesopotamia must have been a "response to emerging market opportunities", and improvements in irrigation facilities and industrial installations were "capital construction projects" undertaken in response to market possibilities and trade incentives and can be interpreted in terms of an "investment model." Flatly contradicting the views of Polanyi and M. I. Finley, who perceived a wide gap between the economic motivations of ancient and modern man, Silver asserts unequivocally (and not entirely unreasonably) that models of ancient economies must be expanded to include entrepreneurs motivated by profit. In part III ("The Response to Changes in Economic Incentives and Public Policy"), Silver maintains his focus on profit as a major economic force in the ancient Near East by explaining the evidence for land consolidation in early Sumer, Old Kingdom Egypt, and early 2nd-millennium B.C.E. Babylonia as a rational response to expanded opportunities for trade--that is, to expanded opportunities for profit. Regarding the early Old Babylonian evidence for land consolidation, Silver hypothesizes that the large-scale shift from wheat to barley cultivation by 2000 B.C.E. reflects, not a response to the problems caused by salinization (which, he notes, are never explicitly referred to in contemporary documents, and, he contends, could have been controlled anyway), but a "rational (in cost-benefit terms) response to newly emerging market opportunities" arising from external demand for wool and textiles and an increased demand for meat in response to higher incomes. This hypothesis may fit Silver's investment/profit model of ancient Near Eastern economies, but the evidence that he cites is hardly compelling; in particular, he is able to cite no compelling evidence for increased meat consumption during this period. In his brief concluding remarks, Silver emphasizes again that there were market systems in the ancient Near East and that the role of those systems ought not to be viewed as dwarfed by the systems of palace and temple--a point that other scholars with a longer involvement in ancient Near East studies have already made, but that now is offered the support of an economic historian. In sum, then, much of what Silver has attempted in his analyses revolves around his overweening need to translate the apparent realities of ancient Near Eastern economic systems into terms and concepts amenable to modern, formal economic theory and, particularly, to market orientations and profit motives. In such analyses, the possibly different mentalities of ancient and modern peoples are, in his view, neither of relevance nor, apparently, of consequence: "Economic theories are not tested by evaluating the 'realism' of the underlying assumptions or the 'mentality' of economic actors". For Silver, it seems, the truly important reality is the theory or model itself, and historical data are therefore to be used to substantiate it.

Inherent in such an approach is an unfortunate insensitivity to the diversity, complexity, and (especially with cuneiform records) the frequent intractability of historical evidence from the ancient past and of the human actors who produced that evidence. This insensitivity seems most obviously reflected in Silver's approach to three specific issues: (i) the nature of "ancient Near Eastern" societies, (ii) the question of ancient vs. modern mentalities and the possible impact of ideology on economic activities, and (iii) the concept of the "Ancient Near East" as a single culture area and a viable conceptual entity. I. THE NATURE OF "ANCIENT NEAR EASTERN" SOCIETIES

Any scholar sufficiently familiar with the documentary and archaeological remains surely will attest that a Braudelian "total history" of the "Ancient Near East" (or of any specific ancient Near Eastern society) quite likely will never be possible. The same pessimistic forecast must similarly apply to any quest for a "total" economic history or even a "total" picture of the "economic structures" of the ancient Near East; accordingly, it is hardly fair to expect Silver to have produced one here. Nonetheless, Silver fails to convince the reader that his economic analyses reflect a sufficient understanding of just how much the textual and archaeological sources have revealed of the complexity and diversity of ancient Near Eastern societies over time. Especially distressing is his virtually complete neglect of the non-urban component of ancient Near Eastern societies--and, by extension, of their roles in "economic structures." Silver's ancient Near Eastern world is essentially restricted to palaces, temples, and city-based merchants and entrepreneurs, with little apparent regard (for instance) for the demonstrably vital role of pastoral semi-nomadic peoples in ancient Near Eastern society and economy; indeed, his extensive bibliography lists none of the works of the late M. B. Rowton. More generally speaking, Silver is unable to appreciate sufficiently the link between economy and society, or, as John Gledhill and Mogens Larsen (1982: 198) have put it, "to retain the basic realization ... that there is no autonomous category economy as a separate sphere of social life in precapitalist societies." Indeed, as they assert, "we must insist on the historical relativity of economic categories and in fact the category economic itself."


As was noted earlier, Silver argues rather strenuously that questions of "mentality" are not germane to the testing of economic theories. He vigorously assails the views of Polanyi and M. I. Finley in this regard by stating that "the postulate of wealth-maximising used by modern economists is said to be utterly inappropriate to the 'irrational' (that is, nonutilitarian) ancients. These allegations have rarely been confronted by competent economists". In Silver's view, Finley's "claim that 'no modern investment model is applicable to the preferences of the men who dominated ancient society,' simply misunderstands the nature of economic models". Indeed, "the warning not to 'impose' modern economic structures on ancient societies should not be used as a crutch or as an excuse for failure to employ the best available tools of analysis". Silver's view of formal economic structures and models, then, is essentially ahistorical and acultural; questions of mentality, ideology, and the like have no bearing on the study of economy, ancient or modern. Instead, economic structures in history can be explained most effectively through formal economic models predicated upon investment models, profit motives, and market orientations. And ancient human beings, regardless of ideology, mentality, or ideas of the cosmic order and humankind's place in it, can be assumed always to have reacted in a rational and predictable fashion to opportunities to acquire profit. To an extent, it certainly seems a foolish denial of one's everyday experience of human nature to contradict an assumption that underlies much of Silver's discussion: economic enterprises are generally predicated upon the expectation of some kind of gain. Nor can one ignore the likelihood that an Old Assyrian trader in the karum at Kanesh nursed a longing for profit similar to that of a modern Wall Street investment broker; indeed, in their letters to their husbands, the wives of the Assyrian merchants at Kanesh complained that their spouses were only interested in money (Larsen 1982: 42-43). But to divorce an entrepreneur's lust for financial gain from any considerations of ideology and mentality more complex than a code of "gentleman's" ethics, rejecting out of hand the possibility that different ideologies might provoke in different individuals different entrepreneurial responses to a particular "opportunity," suggests a failure to appreciate that the real "stuff" of history involves complicated human beings who, in some instances, may try to govern their lives by a quest for profit, but whose lives and motives (whether they are aware of it or not) surely are governed by much more than that.

In recent years, several investigators have emphasized that mentality and ideology, for so many years virtually abandoned as proper elements in a would-be "scientific" study of society, are in fact inextricably woven into the fabric of human existence in all its aspects. As Michael Pearson has noted, Ideology is an active part of human practice and is not external to what humans actually do.... Ideology is not the spiritual as opposed to material reality but is present in all material practice. The ideological sphere extends to include the vast majority of our activities--the nature of our work and leisure, house forms, food preparation, our use of the past, attitudes between men and women, and our need for certain kinds of commodities and energy for consumption are just some of the areas in which we make conscious or unconscious political and ideological decisions every day. While the complexity of our reality has led us to specialize in different fields and disciplines, a properly integrative study of ourselves must break down the watertight compartments into which the social, political, economic and ideological are sometimes separated. (Pearson 1984: 60-61; see also Hodder 1982: 151) The ethnographic record abounds with examples of situations in which, as Jonathan Parry (1989: 68) has noted, "commodity relations appear to be a domain of dark and dangerous supernatural forces and a moral peril for those who must engage in them" (see, for example, the essays by Parry and by M. Bloch and Parry in Parry and Bloch |eds.~ 1989). Even in contemporary Western society one discerns many situations (for example, spending money on a wedding gift, even though one expects nothing in return, or bringing a bottle of wine to a dinner party) in which considerations of social propriety--i.e., mentality--shape one's economic decisions (Snell 1991: 137). Evidently, then, there occur complex interactions between the realms of economic enterprise and ideology--realms that, as Pearson suggests, ought not to be treated as segregated entities--as well as evidence of the significance of ideology and systems of spiritual belief in governing an individual's responses to specific economic opportunities. Throughout his discussion, however, Silver insists on treating entrepreneurial activity as a realm evidently completely unaffected by such considerations. To cite but one example, he considers the improvements in irrigation facilities and industrial installations made by various rulers in southern Mesopotamia to have been "capital construction projects" undertaken in response to market possibilities and trade incentives, and he accordingly interprets them within the framework of an investment model. That construction projects of these kinds would have brought in their wake substantial economic benefit can hardly be denied, nor can one believe that the rulers who undertook these projects were not motivated, perhaps in large measure, by such considerations. But is one then simply to ignore the inscriptions and literary works in which these rulers profess to have completed such projects, not simply for economic gain, but for the patron deities of their respective cities in order to fulfill their time-honored role as pious, zealous stewards of the gods' estates? A modern researcher, of course, can hardly peer into the soul of (for instance) the mid-third millennium B.C.E. Sumerian ruler Urnanshe of Lagash to scrutinize the actual motives behind the many construction projects recorded in his inscriptions. One might note, however, that in one of Urnanshe's inscriptions (La 1.6 in Cooper 1986: 24-25), the digging of irrigation canals is mentioned just after the building of several temples and sanctuaries and just before his claims to have fashioned several cult statues. Urnanshe undoubtedly was aware of the economic advantages to be derived from canal construction when he decided to undertake these projects. But unless one takes an exceedingly cynical view of this and other, similar inscriptions, one must conclude that ideology--specifically, in this instance, Urnanshe's belief in the obligations incumbent upon him as steward of the gods' estate--was an important motive, arguably even the predominant one, in undertaking these "capital construction projects." (For a related point regarding the accumulation of treasure by Old Babylonian rulers as a means of enhancing their status and prestige, see Renger 1979: 255-56.)

In sum, then, in attempting to translate some structures of ancient Near Eastern economies into terms amenable to the analyses of modern economists, Silver adopts an approach that largely divorces those economic structures from the complexly motivated humanity that shaped them and labored within them. To the historian sensitive to the often crucial role of mentality and ideology in determining and shaping human actions throughout history, the result is hardly satisfying.


The geo-cultural designation, "ancient Near East(ern)" has had a long and eminently useful career in the field of ancient studies. Its use has become virtually second nature for Assyriologists and ancient historians in general; indeed, the term, admittedly, is sprinkled quite liberally throughout the preceding pages. For years, it has provided a certain intellectual comfort as a sprawling, somewhat nebulously bounded scholarly vineyard wherein Assyriologists, Sumerologists, Hittitologists, Aramaicists, and those of related philological ilk, as well as archaeologists, could claim to be laboring in a (likewise often nebulously bounded) common cause. And for most authors of textbooks on the history of Western Civilization, the "ancient Near East" has served for decades as a convenient geocultural monolith in which college freshmen can be taught to recognize both the genesis and, often just as commonly, the antithesis of what has been commonly regarded as unique--and allegedly superior--in "Western Civilization."

Given that the term "ancient Near East" has become so firmly rooted in scholarly discourse, and its application so customary, it might be salutary to remind ourselves that the terms "Near East" and "Middle East" are, in fact, entirely artificial creations that originated with Western political/military strategists of the late 19th and 20th centuries. As such, they are terms demonstrably expressing an Occidental point of view. As Nikki Keddie has noted, there are only two points that might favor the use of the term, "Middle East" (and, I would include, "Near East" as customarily applied by "ancient Near Eastern" scholars), to demarcate an entity of any historical validity: (1) the area commonly regarded as the Middle East roughly coincides with the extent of the Arab conquests and with the three major Muslim empires (the Umayyad, the early Abbasid, and the Ottoman), and (2) this area is generally semi-arid, is characterized by irrigation agriculture and pastoral nomadism, and is partially isolated from sub-Saharan Africa and the Indo-Pakistan subcontinent by deserts or mountains. Moreover, "for pre-Islamic times the Middle East as defined by its current borders has no meaning. Such entities as Egypt and the Fertile Crescent, the Persian Empire, the area of Hellenistic influences, the Roman Empire, the Mediterranean lands, and the Byzantine and Sassanian Empires are all more meaningful" (Keddie 1973: 257). In light of all these considerations, the only reason why the term, "Middle East," continues to be used today is "the cumbersomeness of any more scientific designation thought of thus far" (Keddie 1973: 267). One might add to this reason, of course, that of simple--for want of a more elegant term--terminological inertia: witness the deeply embedded, probably never to be eradicated misnomer "Hittite" for the Indo-European speakers in ancient Hatti--or, for that matter, "Indian" for the aboriginal inhabitants of the "Western" Hemisphere. One is inclined to applaud the recent attempts of some scholars to move away from the use of the term, "ancient Near East": A. Bernard Knapp's decision to title his recent general survey, The History and Culture of Ancient Western Asia and Egypt (Knapp 1988), comes most quickly to mind in this regard.

Despite these considerations, the "ancient Near East," as both a geo-cultural designator and an analytical framework, is most probably here to stay. We would do well to remember, however, that both the term and the concept are entirely of the modern Western world's own invention, and that their use, no matter how handy or time-honored, has exacted from us a hefty cost: it has led us to lump together distinctive, diverse cultures and peoples over several millennia, undoubtedly detracting from the inherent uniqueness of each of them and, just as undoubtedly, from the quality of our perception of them. Among the unfortunate results has been the creation of an "ancient Near East" that has all too often been perceived, as Gledhill and Larsen (1982: 202) have put it, as a "static, unchanging world." And, as they also note, that world is "no longer a viable paradigm" for a proper understanding of the ancient civilizations of western Asia.

This seems, however, very much the kind of paradigm that Silver has employed in his analysis of "ancient Near Eastern" economic structures. In several instances, he refers to the "ancient Near East" as if it were some kind of living, breathing, corporeal entity. Thus, he notes "the ancient Near East's preoccupation with the names of gods"; he refers to "ancient Near Eastern firms"; and he asserts that "the ancient Near East held 'excess' stocks of staples against fluctuations in supply". On page 32, he even goes so far as to refer to "ancient Near Easterners." The last usage in particular, in its implicit homogenization of the diverse peoples of ancient western Asia, smacks very much indeed of what has come to be identified as "Orientalism," the history and attitudes of which have been so ably exposed by Edward Said (Said 1978; see also Larsen 1989 for an enlightening discussion of Orientalism in the context of the study of the "ancient Near East").

Silver's consistent disposition to lump together so many diverse cultures as the "ancient Near East" is further reflected in the manner in which he assembles and cites evidence. With disturbing frequency, he uses an approach that casts an extremely large net and then rather unsystematically empties the contents. For example, to illustrate a point in his discussion of "Business Transactions under Divine Auspices", he cites, in the following order, pieces of evidence from 2nd-millennium B.C.E. Babylonia, Assyria, Elam, the Book of Joshua, 2nd-century B.C.E. to 1st-century C.E. Delphi, 3rd-millennium B.C.E. Egypt, 18th-century B.C.E. Ur, 3rd-century B.C.E. Rome, "Babylonia, Ugarit, and Hittite Anatolia," Neo-Hittite Carchemish, Karatepe, early 2nd-millenniumn B.C.E. Assur, and early 2nd-millennium B.C.E. Babylonia. That Silver can cite all this disparate evidence surely attests to his remarkably broad interests and erudition. Yet one finds oneself asking, "What can all of this possibly mean? What can all these bits of evidence, cited so unsystematically, really reveal about anything?" All of this, in my view, brings one back to the point made above. When one considers the immense time span and the tremendous diversity of peoples, ecosystems, cultures, languages, customs, and systems of belief that the "ancient Near East" has come to encompass, the utility of that concept as a framework for the kinds of analyses that Silver has attempted in this book becomes questionable, at the very least.

Despite the objections raised in this essay, some features of this book deserve to be commended. For one thing, it bears witness to a tremendous amount of research by an esteemed and experienced scholar who has devoted much time, energy, and reflection to the investigation and elucidation of ancient economies. But even more significantly, this book constitutes one of those all-too-rare attempts by a non-"ANE" scholar to venture into the almost arcane specialization that the study of the "ancient Near East" has increasingly become in recent decades. Indeed, a statistical study published as recently as 1986 concluded that "the area of ancient Near Eastern studies ... relies heavily upon itself," with a high rate (about 75%) of self-citation (i.e., Assyriologists citing other Assyriologists), a phenomenon that was interpreted as "a negative indication regarding the interdisciplinary nature of the field" (Yitzhaki 1986: 86-87). In a similar vein, Carena has lamented the "clear backwardness of oriental historical studies" and the general inability of Assyriologists and ancient historians to come to grips with "a history of Mesopotamia conceived in adequate and proper historical terms" (Carena 1989: 18). Carena implies that this situation is due in no small part to an excessive (though, admittedly, sometimes necessary) pre-occupation with philology that has dominated the field. Most recently, even Jean Bottero, one of the truly eminent figures within the traditional Assyriological establishment, has commented eloquently on this disturbing state of affairs:

... Assyriologists themselves have not been able (I think they have never seriously tried) to integrate the subject of their research into what concerns all of us: the history of our own past, what has made us the way we are. Assyriologists are too few in number and preoccupied with deciphering difficult documents that have been taken out of the earth by the hundreds of thousands for over a century, and that are inscribed on fragile clay tablets in a language and a script that were both dead and forgotten for two millennia. They give the impression of being astronomers who are fascinated only by an enormous globe that is wandering through the universe and is separated from us by thousands of light years. Such stubbornness can well be admired, but does not prevent us from leaving such touching eccentrics to their dusty unintelligible scribbles. (Bottero 1992: 27)

Given this state of affairs, it is heartening that in recent years a number of scholars well trained in the traditional philological apparatus of Assyriology have begun to apply to cuneiform documents and/or archaeological data techniques and insights derived from other, generally more progressive disciplines. (The recent works of Norman Yoffee, Mogens Larsen, and Herman Vanstiphout, among others, readily come to mind.)

Accordingly, even though this essay has taken serious issue with some central aspects of his approach and with much of his basic analytical framework, Prof. Silver deserves to be commended for the vision, fortitude, and industry with which he has attempted to apply modern formal economic theory to the analysis of evidence from the historical records of ancient western Asia. Even with its flaws, this study opens a door that, in time, may allow re-vitalizing drafts of interdisciplinary cooperation and stimulation into what has been, for too many years, the virtually closed shop of "ancient Near Eastern studies." BIBLIOGRAPHY

Bloch, Maurice, and Jonathan Parry. 1989. "Introduction: Money and the morality of exchange." In Money and the morality of exchange, ed. J. Parry and M. Bloch. Pp. 1-32. Cambridge: Cambridge Univ. Press.

Bottero, Jean. 1992. Mesopotamia: Writing, Reasoning, and the Gods, tr. Zainab Bahrani and Marc Van de Mieroop. Chicago: Univ. of Chicago Press.

Carena, Omar. 1989. History of the Near Eastern Historiography and its Problems: 1852-1985, part one: 1852-1945. Alter Orient und Altes Testament 218/1. Verlag Butzon & Bercker Kevelaer.

Cooper, Jerrold S. 1986. Sumerian and Akkadian Royal Inscriptions, I: Presargonic Inscriptions. American Oriental Society Translation Series, vol. I. New Haven: The American Oriental Society.

Gledhill, John, and Mogens Larsen. 1982. "The Polanyi Paradigm and a Dynamic Analysis of Archaic States." In Theory and Explanation in Archaeology: The Southampton Conference, ed. Colin Renfrew, Michael J. Rowlands, and Barbara Abbott Segraves. Pp. 197-229. New York: Academic Press.

Hodder, Ian. 1982. The identification and interpretation of ranking in prehistory: A contextual perspective. In Ranking, resource, and exchange: aspects of the archaeology of early European society, ed. Colin Renfrew and Stephen Shennan. Pp. 150-54. Cambridge: Cambridge Univ. Press.

Keddie, Nikki R. 1973. Is there a Middle East? International Journal of Middle Eastern Studies 4:255-71.

Knapp, A. Bernard. 1988. The History and Culture of Ancient Western Asia and Egypt. Chicago: Dorsey Press.

Larsen, Mogens Trolle. 1982. Caravans and Trade in Ancient Mesopotamia and Asia Minor. Society for Mesopotamian Studies Bulletin 4:33-45.

----- 1989. "Orientalism and Near Eastern Archaeology." In Domination and Resistance, ed. Daniel Miller, Michael Rowlands, and Christopher Tilley. Pp. 229-39. London: Unwin Hyman.

Mayhew, A., W. C. Neale, and D. W. Tandy. 1985. "Markets in the ancient Near East: A challenge to Silver's argument and use of evidence." Journal of Economic History 45:127-34.

Parry, Jonathan. 1989. "On the moral perils of exchange." In Money and the morality of exchange, ed. J. Parry and M. Bloch. Pp. 64-93. Cambridge: Cambridge Univ. Press.

Parry, Jonathan, and Maurice Bloch. 1989. Money and the morality of exchange. Cambridge: Cambridge Univ. Press.

Pearson, Michael Parker. 1984. "Social change, ideology, and the archaeological record." In Marxist perspectives on archaeology, ed. Matthew Spriggs. Pp. 59-71. Cambridge: Cambridge Univ. Press.

Renger, J. 1979. "Interaction of Temple, Palace, and 'Private Enterprise' in the Old Babylonian Economy." In State and Temple Economy in the Ancient Near East, vol. I (Orientalia Lovaniensia Analecta 5), ed. E. Lipinski. Pp. 249-56. Said, Edward W. 1978. Orientalism. New York: Vintage Books.

Silver, Morris. 1983a. "Karl Polanyi and markets in the ancient Near East: The challenge of the evidence." Journal of Economic History 53:795-829.

----- 1983b. Prophets and Markets: The Political Economy of Ancient Israel. Boston: Kluwer-Nijhoff.

Snell, Daniel C. 1991. "Marketless Trading in our Time." Journal of the Economic and Social History of the Orient 34:129-41.

Yitzhaki, M. 1986. "Citation patterns of the research literature of ancient Near Eastern studies." Journal of Cuneiform Studies 38:81-93.
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Author:Robertson, John F.
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Date:Jul 1, 1993
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