The notion of a typical “Western” way of war, as espoused most clearly by Victor Davis Hanson, is problematic to say the least.
This edited volume offers an excellent introduction to archaeological approaches to the study of warfare.
What is it that makes warfare in the ancient world such a fascinating and rewarding subject of study?
Fortifications such as walls and gates seem to have had an obvious defensive purpose. But how effective were they in keeping the enemy at bay?
Anthony Snodgrass associated changes in Greek fortifications over the course of the Archaic period with the rise of the polis, i.e. the “city-state”. Does that idea have merit?
Inspired by my postdoctoral research, I wonder whether the ancient Greeks built walls around (part of) their settlements primarily out of fear of attack.