The Great Hymn to the Aton

Read Backman’s account of Akhenaton (pp. 43-4) along the Great Hymn to the Aton (sourcebook 1.8) with the various views in Akenaten and A New Relationship in the Near East module on BlackBoard. Post whether or not you think Akhenaton should be considered to be a reformer and give specific examples of what his reign shows about Egyptian kingship? After posting you should respond to at least two of your peers with a comment that is substantial and constructive (do not simply simply say I like your post) to debate the question.

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Write responses for these two discussions :

1- I don’t Akhenaton should be considered a religious reformer. His move to reform Egypt into a monotheistic society failed, and after his reign, old practices were soon implemented again. Akhenaton’s reign shows that Pharaoh’s had immense power, and they could frame society into whatever they sought fit. As stated in ‘Akenaten and A New Relationship’, his reign damaged the image of the Pharaoh caused disdain toward the kingship even after his reign, “kingship was so integral to the cultural identity of the Egyptians that this deliberate royal assault on religious assumptions gave the kingship lasting weaknesses”. The kingship had such a large role in everyday life in Egypt, and although Akhenaton tried to reform it, he failed to do so and left a negative impact on the position for years to come.

2- I do not think that Akhenaton should be considered a reformer because he ultimately failed to implement a full monotheistic religious society. He manged to create one, but once his kingship ended the old Egyptian practices were reimplemented. Not only did his religious ideals stick but his politics did not stick around long after his reign ended. People believed that his politics even weakened the country as a whole.

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