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This text is part of a six-volume work which offers an overview of art, music, literature, history and philosophy. Book 1 explores the first civilizations and their legacy, from prehistoric times to the Roman Empire and Han China. The text focuses on the Western tradition, but also includes strong coverage of other cultures, setting the arts of the West in the larger arena of world cultures including India, the East, Africa and Native America. Throughout the chronological narrative there is a focus on universal themes, integrating ideas and issues that relate to the human condition. The coverage of literature, art, music and architecture is integrated into discussions of cultural and political influences, aiming to create a logical presentation of broad subject matter.