The essay mainly tries to make a comparison between the Old Babylonian Empire and the Hittite World, by empirically analysing the servants' rise from one social position to another. The author separately discusses status inconsistency in the Old Babylonian Empire and the integration of the ancient Oriental elite into the dimension of social status. Was there discrimination by gender in the Hettite labour market? What chances of mobility existed in the Egyptian army? The paper dwells on the problems of formal/informal prestige at length in the learned elite, not disregarding even such factors like emancipation, inheritance and law suits of slaves.
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