Rijksmuseum van Oudheden: Leemanszaal
The elites of ancient societies have been given prominence in historical and archaeological writings due to a focus on monumental architecture and the lives of political leaders. Yet, the archaeological record often lacks clarity when researchers attempt to study the lower classes. The reason for this is that long before we start to interpret and excavate ancient sites, political inequalities have already affected the durability of the archaeological record. Ziggurats, palaces and monumental graves are built forever, while the living quarters of the majority of the population are constructed from less substantial materials that gets more easily destroyed. This power imbalance in the transformation process has been referred to as “political taphonomy”, which will be the focal point of this workshop.
To tackle this topic, scholars based in institutions from Central Asia to Western Europe within the fields of Southwest Asian and Northeast African archaeology have been invited to talk about political taphonomy and its effects on graves, architecture, material culture as well as the detectability of sites in surveys. The overarching questions of the conference will be how the unequal access to resources shaped the archaeological record and what can we do to take this inequality into consideration, when writing our historical narrative.
Registration for in-person attendance, please contact Dr. Georg Cyrus – NINO Postdoctoral Fellow. Due to the room size, the maximum number of participants is restricted to 70 persons.
The sessions on the 17th and 18th November will take place in the Leemanszaal in the Rijksmuseum van Oudheden, Leiden.
The conference will round off with a closed World Café Discussion on the 19th of November involving all speakers.
Further updates, instructions and other information will be posted on this event page.
For additional questions and information, please contact Dr. Georg Cyrus – NINO Postdoctoral Fellow.
|10:30||Theory I:||Reinhard Bernbeck||The two faces of political taphonomy|
|11:00||Theory II:||Susan Pollock||Approaching the marginalized in Mesopotamian archaeology|
|12:00||Architecture I:||Alexander Tamm||From Riches to Rags – The Reuse of the Early Bronze Age Palace of Chuera|
|12:30||Architecture II:||Georg Cyrus||Four steps towards creating ‘dark ages’ – The silencing of post-collapse societies|
|14:30||Burials I:||Sarah Schrader & Veronica Tamorri||Post-Mortem Political Taphonomy: Mortuary Contexts and Human Skeletal Remains in Bronze Age Nubia|
|15:00||Burials II:||Mahsa Najafi & Reza Naseri||Tracing the concept of political taphonomy in Deh Dumen cemetery in Iran|
|16:00||Burials III:||Sepideh Jamshidi Yeganeh||Political taphonomy in the Blachak cemetery|
|10:30||Survey I:||Morteza Khanipour||Archaeological survey and social ranks in Fars cultural zone|
|11:00||Survey II:||Azer Keskin||Political Taphonomy of Iron Age Mesopotamia|
|12:00||Survey III:||Andrea Squitieri||Agricultural activities and everyday life in the Neo-Assyrian Empire|
|14:00||Objects I:||Johnny Samuele Baldi||De-silencing the poor by taking seriously their ways of doing things. Ceramic workshops and labour organisation in Bronze Age northern Mesopotamia|
|14:30||Objects II:||Bleda Düring||Identifying Sub-Alterns in the Early Assyrian Empire: A Perspective from the Periphery|
|15:30||Objects III:||Birgül Öğüt & Doğa Karakaya||Taphonomy in archeaobotany and how it might help to detect the ‘silenced’|
|World Café Discussion|