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  • Premiered: 
    March 1, 2018
    (Click date to see TV listings for that day)

  • Network: BBC2
  • Category: Series
  • Genre: Documentary
  • Type: Live Action
  • Concept: 
    Inspired by the 1969 UK series (Civilisations) by Kenneth Clark 
  • Subject Matter: Historical
  • Tags: art

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  • Season 1
    • Amazon
Legal Full Episodes
Not Available Online
(That We Know Of)

Plot Synopsis

Inspired by Kenneth Clark's series of the same name, CIVILIZATIONS is a nine-part series that tells the story of art -- from the dawn of human history to the present day -- while introducing a new generation to the great masterworks of beauty, ingenuity and illumination created since the dawn of civilization itself. This new version of CIVILIZATIONS ranges more widely, featuring African, Asian, American as well as European cultures in order to explore how human creativity began and developed, how civilizations around the world influenced one another, and how artists have depicted the human form and the natural world. Plus, this series explores the visual culture of societies from around the globe revealing, alongside the magnificent objects made in the West, the wealth of treasures created by other cultures including the extraordinary landscape scrolls of classical China; the sculpture of the Olmecs; African bronzes; Japanese prints; and Mughal miniatures. CIVILIZATIONS has three hosts: art historian Simon Schama (five episodes); historian and writer David Olusoga (two episodes); and Cambridge classicist Mary Beard (two episodes). PBS aired the U.S. premiere of CIVILIZATIONS on Tuesday, April 17, 2018 at 8pm (check local listings).
On Tuesday, July 3, 2018 at 8pm (check local listings), PBS premiered the season finale of CIVILIZATIONS. The season ender, "What Is Art Good For?," explores art in the age of revolution, war and profound scientific change and considers the question: Should art create a separate realm, a place of escape, or should it plunge into the chaos, transforming the way we see and live in the world?


Other Titles

  • Originally aired in the UK with the title: Civilisations